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, August 25, 2016 | More Post by

In just a few short weeks we will be unveiling A Calendar to Live By 2017, chock-full of lifesaving health tips, hope, and inspiration. Since this is the calendar’s 10-year anniversary, we wanted to make it extra special. So for the first time, each of our calendar models had her very own photographer!

We consider ourselves beyond blessed to have such an amazing group of photographers lending their talents to support BB! Several of this year’s photographers shared with us, in their own words, what it means to be a part of this incredible milestone.

Thomas Gorman:Thomas Gorman

It has been a pleasure to work with Beyond Boobs! for the last six years, but it was a true honor to photograph a calendar model and a number of group shots for the calendar this year!! To be around such strong, inspirational women who face a tough battle was very humbling. I am touched that what I do as a photographer helps to spread the mission of this great organization!

Robert Hersh, MD:

Robert HershMy association with BB! started with my role as a reconstructive surgeon caring for patients who were members of this fabulous organization. To assist these women and their families with their recovery and seeing them thrive is the greatest honor I have had in my chosen profession.

Another great passion of mine, other than the love I have for my wife and children, is PHOTOGRAPHY. I have been further honored this year to contribute to BB! and help its members in another capacity: As a photographer for A Calendar to Live By 2017. I look forward to a lifetime association with this wonderful organization.

Kathy Hornsby:Kathy Hornsby

Calendar model Alveta Henderson is a creative director, an art director, and general enthusiast supreme! Her concept of our photo shoot was not only colorful, but deeply meaningful to her family history. That emotional connection allowed us to work for hours outside on an oddly cold spring day (snow flurries!). Although Alveta is incredibly photogenic and naturally looks simply stunning, her vision is what really made the shoot easy for me! I loved working with her!

Todd MeigsTodd Meigs:

When I started volunteering with BB!, cancer hadn’t touched me personally. But last year, on July 7, my mom was diagnosed. Now I’m back in the game, and it’s personal.

 

Beth Oliver:Beth Oliver

Working with calendar model April Salvant and BB! has been so inspirational in my own breast cancer healing and love of life. These women are faced with severe adverse conditions daily, but they stand strong with positive hearts. I am glad that for even a day we could go have some fun and produce a beautiful memory together.

Wallace Roark:

Wallace RoarkIn a time when there is so much going on around us, it is refreshing to support a group like Beyond Boobs!, which strives to help women and empower them in their time of need. The Beyond Boobs! organization puts a lot of love into supporting women in their quest for a better tomorrow. I feel truly honored and blessed to be in the company of so many amazing people.

, July 11, 2016 | More Post by

Scott Mielock first danced onto the Beyond Boobs! stage three years ago. He and his wife, Melinda, a professional dance instructor, are part of Starlets of Dance, BB!’s annual fundraiser that celebrates survival through movement and music. Scott has served as the event’s emcee, and also performs with Melinda during the program. The couple thrives on BB!’s energy and enthusiasm, and they love sharing their passion for dance with the organization.

Scott Mielock, Mr. Breast Fest 2016, and runner-up Robert Glover pose with BB! Co-Founder Mary Beth Gibson.

Scott Mielock, Mr. Breast Fest 2016, and runner-up Robert Glover pose with BB! Co-Founder Mary Beth Gibson.

In addition to his dancing shoes, Scott now has a new accessory for his wardrobe – a crown. Last month he earned the title of Mr. Breast Fest, and he is eager to begin his reign, which was a year in the making.

“Some of the Boobers! I met at last year’s Starlets of Dance event told me I should compete to be Mr. Breast Fest,” Scott explained. “I said I would, and when the deadline for applications rolled around, those Boobers! didn’t forget! I was flooded with texts and messages,” he added, laughing.

For a year, Scott thought about the strategy he would use during the Mr. Breast Fest competition. A Navy man for more than two decades, Scott is no stranger to tactics and lots of planning. “I wanted to maintain a fun, carefree, crazy mentality, but also be serious about raising money for the group,” he said.

Seeking to bring new ideas and a burst of energy to the event, Scott treated the competition like a presidential race. He promoted his involvement on his Facebook page, asked for likes from his followers, and sent out tweets. “I wanted to make it a very active process,” he said. “I wanted to get the message out and engage people online to get donations.”

Because of his background as an actor and dancer, Scott thought he would have the competition in the bag. He got a little nervous, though, when he saw the other contenders in person at the Eagle’s Nest in Chesapeake, where the event was held on June 11.

“I was sizing up the other guys and realized I had my work cut out for me,” he said. “I had no idea what would happen, but I had fun with each part of the contest because I knew the money I raised was going to a great cause.”

Decked out in a decorated bra that fit his curves just right, Scott spent the afternoon dancing for dollars, holding on for dear life atop the mechanical bull, answering on-the-spot questions, and munching his way to greatness by being the first to eat a doughnut suspended from a string.

The doughnut-eating contest during the Mr. Breast Fest contest was a tough challenge.

The doughnut-eating portion of the Mr. Breast Fest contest was a tough challenge.

“Eating a doughnut from a string is a lot harder than people might think,” Scott said. He mashed his doughnut against the head of Robert, another contender for the crown who was voted runner-up. “I was basically eating the doughnut off of Robert’s head,” Scott explained. “I even left a streak of white powder on the side of his head. How can you not be entertained by that?”

When Scott’s name was called as the winner, he accepted his crown with a mixture of relief and excitement. “I love what BB! stands for, and I love that they are working to support women diagnosed with breast cancer,” he said.

Robert Glover, a personal trainer at Brix Fitness, has many friends in the Hampton Roads fitness circuit, including Joshua Banks, Mr. Breast Fest 2015. When Joshua told Robert about the Mr. Breast Fest competition, he was all in.

“The competition was literally an answer to my prayers,” Robert said. “I had been asking God for a way to lend my energy to an important cause, so finding Beyond Boobs! was like a divine connection.”

Robert had never worn women’s lingerie before, but luckily he had a client at his fitness studio who offered to help him out by putting together something for him to wear. He admits he spent a few extra minutes in the restroom before the event, adjusting the sparkly, hot-pink garment, but he wore it well and was voted runner-up.

“I wasn’t sure what to expect, so I had no real strategy,” Robert said. “I wanted to smile, talk to people, and try to pry some dollars out of their pockets for the cause.”

Robert enjoyed meeting and talking with people as he worked to earn votes at the event. He especially loved interacting with the Boobers! “I really liked seeing the looks on their faces as all of us guys made fools of ourselves,” he said.

Robert looks forward to taking part in BB! events in the year ahead, and wants to be involved with the group as much as he can. “I am in the fitness industry, and a big part of my calling is to educate people about the advantages of living a healthy lifestyle,” he said. “I want to use my talents and experiences to educate and inspire others.”

, July 01, 2016 | More Post by

The Women Behind the Boobs – Meet Chris Schwab

By: Jamie McAllister

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

chris schwabChris Schwab has the distinction of being the very first full-time staff member Beyond Boobs! brought on. She has held the title of Managing Director for six years and she cherishes every moment she spends working for the group.

Chris worked as a teacher and a school administrator in Pennsylvania until she and her husband David took a chance and moved to Cape Charles, on Virginia’s Eastern Shore. She took a position as assistant principal at Accomack Public Schools, pivoted again to a position with a commercial construction company, and then discovered Beyond Boobs! in 2008.

“I was looking for a philanthropic connection for the commercial construction company I worked for and I found Beyond Boobs!,” Chris explained. “When I attended the Pink Carpet Gala for the first time I was just blown away by what the group was doing.” She called BB! Co-Founder Mary Beth Gibson bright and early Monday morning to ask how she could get more involved.

Chris volunteered with BB! for about two years before she signed on as a staff member in July of 2010. “It was like coming home,” she said. “It was another big transition, but every night when I put my head on the pillow, I know that I have reached someone.”

Over the years Chris has watched the BB! family blossom and grow. As managing director she plays a part in every aspect of the organization. “I work closely with Mary Beth and help manage all of the pieces,” she said. “I am behind the scenes and I love it.”

Sometimes, though, Chris puts her hair in a ponytail, dons a baseball cap, and is just one of the girls. “The annual Boober! retreat is my favorite weekend out of the whole year,” she said. “It gives me the chance to really connect with the women we serve.”

Through all of the growth and change Chris has witnessed during her years with BB!, one thing has stayed the same. “The BB! culture never goes away,” she said. “We still offer that personal touch. The reasons we wake up every morning and what we think about before going to sleep every night are the Boobers!”

There is no doubt Chris has helped shape the direction BB! has taken, but BB! has also left its imprint on her life. “BB! has gotten me out of my box,” Chris said. “And after hearing the stories of our Boobers!, I am a different person and I look at things differently.”

Chris and her husband David have been married for 32 years. The couple has two adult daughters, Victoria and Samantha. This past fall they welcomed two sons-in-law into their family, and in a few short weeks they will meet their very first granddaughter. Their family also includes Rocky, a 14-year-old Shih Tzu-poodle mix.

, June 29, 2016 | More Post by

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

lisa marshallIn January of 2014, Lisa Marshall began a new chapter in her life. Recently divorced, she had retired from her 30-year teaching career and her daughter Eme was away at college. She was also celebrating 10 years as a breast cancer survivor. It must have been fate, then, that led her to BB!’s booth at the MyTime Women’s Show in Hampton, Virginia.

“I was drawn to their booth,” Lisa said. “It just radiated energy.”

That day Lisa met Vicki Vawter, BB!’s Events and Community Relations Manager, as well as Gale Bryant, a BB! volunteer. The three hit it off right away, and by the time Lisa returned home she had received an e-mail from Gale about volunteer opportunities. Lisa became a “Tuesday Tag Team” (T3) volunteer and is now a Full-Support Volunteer for Events and Corporate Liaison.

As a volunteer, Lisa jumps in to help with any number of events BB! hosts or attends each year. In fact, one year after she met Vicki and Gale, she was manning the booth at the MyTime Women’s Show. Lisa spends a great deal of her time preparing for the “Breast” Ball Golf tournament, as well as the Pink Carpet Gala. She has also traveled with BB! cofounders René Bowditch and Mary Beth Gibson to out-of-state conferences related to breast cancer.

“The spirit of Beyond Boobs! fills my heart,” Lisa said. “The unconditional love they have for survivors is tremendous. If I can help with events that raise money to support this group, then I want to do that.”

Lisa lives in Newport News with her daughter, Eme, and a miniature dachshund named Pretzel. Lisa enjoys crafting and cooking, especially Cajun food that reminds her of her Louisiana heritage. She also loves to travel.

“I never seem to run out of things to do,” Lisa said. “I live life with an exclamation point, and I want to help others do the same.”

, June 28, 2016 | More Post by

The Women Behind the Boobs – Meet Gin Marks

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

Gin marksGin Marks went from Beyond Boobs! calendar model to full-support volunteer in just a few short years. Diagnosed with breast cancer in 2008, Gin was in her oncologist’s office when she caught a glimpse of a BB! rack card. The words “Not Your Typical Support Group” caught her eye.

“I had been to support groups with my brother for lymphoma and my mom for diabetes, and they were depressing and boring,” Gin said. “Beyond Boobs! just looked like fun.”

Dinner with BB! cofounder Mary Beth Gibson led to modeling for A Calendar to Live By 2009. She wore her sash with pride to represent BB!, and in 2010, when she retired early from NASA, she signed on to be an office volunteer.

As an auxiliary staff member for operations and management, Gin draws on her project management background to assist BB! with strategic planning, grant writing, policy development, event planning, and more. Outside the office she assists with event setup, conducting safety walk-throughs, or registering guests at a BB! signature event.

“I am an introvert, so my behind-the-scenes work with Beyond Boobs! fits me perfectly,” Gin said. “The women I work with are incredible, and we work well together as a team.”

Gin lives in Hampton with her husband Rick. The couple has been married for 37 years and have two adult children, Maurie and Sean. They are also doting grandparents to three grandchildren, Liam (1), Mikko (4), and Halvor (1).

, June 26, 2016 | More Post by

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

celia styerA neighbor first told Celia Styer about Beyond Boobs! several years ago, but at the time Celia was still raising her two sons, Ryan and Mitchell. Later she cared for her mom, who had been diagnosed with breast cancer, and provided a home for her niece. However, after her mom passed away and her niece moved out, Celia found herself with time on her hands. She knew just where to turn.

Celia began volunteering with BB! in 2010. Two years later she joined the group as a staff member. Initially she worked on administrative tasks, but gradually she drifted over to the events side of things, which is where she spends her days now as the Marketing and Events Coordinator.

“I began helping with the silent auction at the fashion show on the Southside first,” Celia explained. “The first year I worked on getting items for the auction, and then the next year I was running it myself. After that I started doing registration.”

Celia considers herself a low-key, behind-the-scenes kind of gal, so the BB! dialect took some getting used to. “I consider myself very proper in public, so at first I was embarrassed by all of the terminology,” Celia said. “Words like Boobs, Boobers!, and Boostiers. But now I use those words all the time and don’t even think twice about them.”

Celia and Vicki Vawter work as a team on BB! signature events. “Vicki is the big-picture person,” Celia said. “I keep the trains running, so to speak, with spreadsheets and details.”

In the fall Celia spends a lot of her time organizing the Mustang Raffle that leads up to the Starlets of Dance competition.

Starlets also happens to be Celia’s favorite BB! event. It was one of the first she ever attended and she loves seeing the transformation of the Starlets over the eight weeks of practice before they take the stage to perform and compete.

“I work closely with those women and I see them from the start,” Celia said. “They are so nervous, but after weeks of lessons they accomplish a huge thing in front of so many people. There is nothing like the smiles on their faces when they finish.”

Celia enjoys working with BB!, but it is the Boobers! who keep her going. “Talking with the women at the first Boober! retreat I attended hooked me,” Celia said. “The experiences those women had with breast cancer were so different from what my mom went through. It is important to be able to help someone talk and heal.”

The BB! staff members also hold a very special spot in Celia’s heart. “I love my team,” Celia said. “These are the hardest working people I have ever known. They are phenomenal.”

Celia and her husband Don have been married for 29 years. In addition to their two adult sons, they are the proud pet parents of Tank, a golden retriever; Fox, a Pomeranian; and Ohana, a Quaker parrot who likes to bark, make zipper sounds, and cluck like a chicken.

 

 

 

 

 

, June 24, 2016 | More Post by

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

jenn haynesJenn Haynes, owner of A-One Mobile Bookkeeping, handles all of the finances for Beyond Boobs!, from tallying donations to paying bills. BB! has been one of Jenn’s clients since December 2013. She spends about 10 hours every week at BB! headquarters and shares an office with Managing Director Chris Schwab.

Jenn is also a proud supporter of the group. She is a B Cup Sponsor for A Calendar to Live By 2017, and in the past has purchased tickets for the BB! Mustang raffle, as well as the annual Pink Carpet Gala.

“I love the people at Beyond Boobs!,” Jenn said. “They do very important work and offer an invaluable service to the community.

In addition to running A-One Mobile Bookkeeping, Jenn is co-owner of Work Nimbly, a co-working space in Williamsburg. Jenn and Paul, her husband of nine years, live in Williamsburg. They are the proud parents of two fur babies – Maybell, an eight-year-old goldendoodle, and Pixie, a border collie/corgi mix.

, June 22, 2016 | More Post by

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

victoria rileyVictoria Riley joined Beyond Boobs! as Business Development and Operations Manager in February of 2016, but her involvement with the group goes back several years. Her mom, Chris Schwab, is BB!’s Managing Director, and when Chris became active with BB!, she brought her daughter along with her to events. Victoria took part in the BB! fashion shows on the Southside, and also went to the Pink Carpet Gala and the “Breast” Ball Golf Tournament.

Victoria studied art history in college, but she is equally at home with technology. Currently she is working to build BB!’s infrastructure, including the implementation of Salesforce, a cloud computing platform.

“It is an exciting time to join the organization,” Victoria said. “We are experiencing a new wave of growth that will bring on new technology and infrastructure developments, which is something I am passionate about.”

Victoria and her husband Jamin were married last fall. The newlyweds, along with their rescue dog, Finnigan, live in Fairfax and are in the process of relocating to Williamsburg. Victoria and Jamin love playing golf and tennis together. They also spend as much time as they can hiking and camping, especially in their favorite spot, the Shenandoah Valley.

, June 19, 2016 | More Post by

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

Vicki Vawter and her husband, Lenny.

Vicki Vawter and her husband, Lenny.

Vicki Vawter, Events and Community Relations Manager for Beyond Boobs!, discovered the group back in 2007. One of her friends, a breast cancer survivor, showed her a copy of BB’s annual A Calendar to Live By. Vicki was intrigued by the calendar, which does double duty as a health and wellness guide.

Back then, Vicki walked to raise funds for a national breast cancer foundation, and she was also putting together a golf tournament to raise money for that group. After seeing the calendar, Vicki invited BB! to be part of the tournament. By the time the third year rolled around, the fundraiser was all about BB!

In 2010, Vicki and Beyond Boobs! cofounder Mary Beth Gibson were sitting in the bleachers, watching their kids play baseball, when Mary Beth turned to Vicki and said, “You’re already ‘working’ for us. Let’s make it official.”

“It was the perfect time in my life for me to take on full-time work,” Vicki explained. “Why wouldn’t I help if I could?”

Vicki was one of the first full-time BB! staff members, second only to Managing Director Chris Schwab. “It is amazing to have been there from the beginning and to know you are helping to build something,” Vicki said.

In addition to organizing the “Breast” Ball Golf Tournament every year, Vicki works with the BB! team to put together all of the group’s signature events, including the Pink Carpet Gala, Run for the Hills, Mr. Breast Fest, and Starlets of Dance. She also communicates with everyone who raises funds for BB! and makes sure they have the promotional materials and information they need.

“Every day after work I know I have made a difference,” Vicki said. “I can see the difference in people’s lives when they connect with others at events, choose a healthier lifestyle, or get a mammogram. You can’t do that at just any job.”

The golf tournament, which celebrated its ninth year in April, is still Vicki’s favorite BB! event. This year, 343 golfers participated in the tournament. The parking lot was a sea of golf carts bearing familiar faces, as well as golfers new to the event. Vicki and her husband high-fived each golfer as they passed on their way to the course. Over the past nine years, the tournament has raised nearly $200,000 for BB!

This summer Vicki and Lenny will celebrate their 20th wedding anniversary. The couple lives in Williamsburg with their two children, 17-year-old Karsen and 14-year-old Ryan.

, June 15, 2016 | More Post by

Beyond Boobs! is one big happy family, but it is also a business. In addition to a host of amazing volunteers, BB! has been blessed with a group of talented, hardworking staff members who are truly the backbone of the organization. Because of their love and dedication, we are able to continue our mission of providing encouragement and support to young women diagnosed with breast cancer.

Staff members work behind the scenes to make sure all of our events run smoothly, and they take care of the millions of not-so-sexy, but just as valuable, details of running a business. Most important, they are there for our Boobers!, helping them live life with an exclamation point!

We share so much of our lives with our staff. Spending time with these amazing women and getting to know them and their families is a joy. And now it is our great privilege to introduce them to you. In the coming weeks, the blog will feature profiles of our staff members – the women behind the boobs.

Here's Desiree Parker manning a Pink-Link booth at a recent conference.

Here’s Desiree Parker manning a Pink-Link booth at a recent conference.

Desiree Parker was a roving reporter for Williamsburg Yorktown Daily, an online news site, when she met Beyond Boobs! Cofounders Mary Beth Gibson and René Bowditch in 2008.

“They were so kind, loving, and open,” said Desiree. “I covered the group as part of my nonprofit beat for WY Daily and felt such a connection with them.”

Desiree also has a personal connection to the BB! mission. Her mom was diagnosed with two unrelated cancers – lung and breast. She passed away in 1997 from complications related to lung cancer, at the very beginning of Desiree’s freshman year at the College of William & Mary. Because of that, the work BB! does to support young women diagnosed with breast cancer and their families is especially close to Desiree’s heart.

When Desiree decided to take some time off from work in 2014, it felt only natural to volunteer with BB!, so she offered to write press releases for the organization. In June of 2015 she became a contract employee. “I got sucked in,” she said with a laugh.

In addition to writing press releases for BB!, Desiree also helps the group with their social media presence. She is on the ground floor of Pink Link, a social media site for breast cancer survivors that is part of the BB! family. “I handle administrative duties for Pink Link and I have also been working to get the new site up and running,” she explained.

Desiree loves the teamwork that comes with being a BB! staff member. “We are a small group and I feel like we all have lots of ownership in the organization,” she said “It’s not just Mary Beth’s baby, it’s everyone’s baby.

“Covering Beyond Boobs! as a reporter made me want to work with them,” she continued. “Working with a nonprofit is a good career path for your heart and your soul. I am exactly where I want to be and I am so happy this worked out.”

Desiree and her husband Gary have been married for 13 years and have a 12-year-old son, Alex. The family lives in Williamsburg. When Desiree isn’t working or watching her son play soccer, she enjoys writing fiction, doing yoga, and meditating.