, July 28, 2017 | More Post by

2018 calendar model Jamie Vanek and her kids on her favorite trail near her home.

Our new A Calendar to Live By 2018 will be unveiled at the Pink Carpet Gala on September 9, and we’re so excited that the big day is almost here! We’re offering you a brief introduction to the 2018 calendar girls team here on our blog – we asked them to share a story about one of their life-shaping moments and we’ll post the responses here over the next few weeks. We hope you’ll come meet these women at the Gala! Click HERE for a link if you’d like to learn more or get tickets!

Meet Calendar Model Jamie Vanek

10 years ago I uprooted my life to move to a state that I hated with a man that I loved. I hated everything about Virginia until I discovered Newport News’ little treasure, the Noland Trail. When my husband first showed it to me I told him I couldn’t run 5 miles. But later, it is on this trail that I fell in love with running and truly accepted my new home. From this trail I trained for my first marathon, planned our new house, explored with our children, and pondered life. So much has happened in 10 years and so much of it has happened around this location.

-Jamie

, July 26, 2017 | More Post by

Our new A Calendar to Live By 2018 will be unveiled at the Pink Carpet Gala on September 9, and we’re so excited that the big day is almost here! We’re offering you a brief introduction to the 2018 calendar girls team here on our blog – we asked them to share a story about one of their life-shaping moments and we’ll post the responses here over the next few weeks. We hope you’ll come meet these women at the Gala! Click HERE for a link if you’d like to learn more or get tickets!

Meet Calendar Model Cheri Lavalle

November 20, 2007 was the day I married my best friend Hector. He has been the most remarkable person in my life. He has cared and supported me through the most traumatic time of my life which is breast cancer. He has told me how beautiful I am with no hair, how strong I am at my weakest moment and how much he loves me even though cancer has consumed the past 3 years of our marriage. I  cannot imagine my life and this journey of cancer without him.

-Cheri

, July 25, 2017 | More Post by

Our new A Calendar to Live By 2018 will be unveiled at the Pink Carpet Gala on September 9, and we’re so excited that the big day is almost here! We’re offering you a brief introduction to the 2018 calendar girls team here on our blog – we asked them to share a story about one of their life-shaping moments and we’ll post the responses here over the next few weeks. We hope you’ll come meet these women at the Gala! Click HERE for a link if you’d like to learn more or get tickets!

Meet Calendar Model Miki Fett

Unbelievably, moving to Hawaii with my handsome new groom was one of the hardest things I’ve done in my life (besides beating cancer!). It was a year of changes and adjustments… I had never been this far away from family and friends, my husband and I had never even lived in the same state.

A year later, once we had it all figured out, he was deploying for 15 months. I was going to be alone, on an island, far from home. A week after his deployment, a kind voice on my answering machine said her husband sat by my husband on the plane to Kuwait, had mentioned that his wife needed a friend, and passed along my number. Should I call her back, I wondered? She took a chance by calling me so I gave it a shot.

11 years later, we are still the best of friends.  We’ve been through and hell and back together. During that 15 month deployment, we bonded with six other ladies too (we’re all pictured here) and they’ve all taught me life lessons… the biggest one being that blood does not make you family. It is the experiences and bonds shared, being sisters for one and another that does. I have a wonderful blood and unrelated family, these ladies have had the largest impact on my life and I carry a piece of them with me always. We are the Band of Sisters and my life was forever changed by making that phone call.

-Miki

, July 18, 2017 | More Post by

Desiree Parker is our Pink Link Program Manager. Here’s why she’s “Here for the Girls”:

Years ago, I had a job where I didn’t feel like I was making that much of a difference to anyone, even though I wanted to. If you think about it, your job is often where you expend the most effort (aside from what you do for your family), and I wanted to do something with my life that was useful and meaningful. I volunteered for Here for the Girls back when it was just Beyond Boobs!, and I loved what I did there. When I got the chance to work for the organization, I was thrilled to become part of the team!

Cancer has touched my life – as it has for many others. My mother had lung cancer when I was a teenager that ultimately metastasized and caused her death. She also had an early-stage primary breast cancer after her lung cancer diagnosis (it’s unusual for someone to have two primary cancers, especially when they occur close together) which was treated with a lumpectomy. After she died, I felt guilty because I didn’t think that (as a somewhat self-absorbed teen) I had done all I could to be there for her after she was diagnosed and through the five years until she passed away. (The photo is of me when I was little, sitting next to my mom).

I’ve come to realize over the years that we all handle tough situations like the death of a loved one in different ways at different times in our lives; we simply do what we can based on where we are emotionally. It makes me happy that now, as an adult and as a mother myself, I have a chance to work on behalf of women who are dealing with life after a breast cancer diagnosis. I’m glad to be a part of offering them a network of love and support. Many of the women we serve have happy outcomes, though some do not – but the important thing (to me) is to make sure they all have support at every phase of their treatment and beyond. You can face so much more in life when you have a hand to hold. That’s why I’m Here for the Girls!

, July 06, 2017 | More Post by

Jamin Riley is the husband of Victoria Riley, our Business Development and Operations Manager. He explains why he is “Here for the Girls”:

This past October, I was fortunate enough to volunteer at the annual “Run for the Hills” event on behalf of Here for the Girls. The spirit that was present was something else all together. Teams festooned with all manner of sparkle and shine chugged along in support of an organization unlike any other.

As a marshal for the race, I manned one of the checkpoints on the course and watched as group after group of uniquely exuberant racers walked, jogged, trotted, and even skipped along. I ran cross country in high school, but I had never seen a race quite like this. Spectators and runners alike were out of breath. Not from the race itself, but from cheering and uplifting. Every time a new group sprung from the woods, they echoed the screams of the volunteers and were given new life while rounding the turn.

I watched all of this unfold and couldn’t help but draw a comparison to the organization that we were all there to support. Here for the Girls makes a real difference in the lives of the women it embraces. This unique organization, festooned with all manner of sparkle and shine, gives Boobers! the breath they need to keep running each and every day.