L-R: Oliver Bogler, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs, MD Anderson; Judith Salerno, President and CEO, Susan G. Komen; Celina Schocken, CEO, PRRR; Ambassador Deborah Birx, U.S. Global AIDS Coordinator; John Damonti, President, Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation; and Lisa Carty, Director of U.S. Liaison Office, UNAIDS
Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon’s Steering Committee, comprised of representatives of its partner organizations, assembled on October 25 in at the Bush Institute in Dallas, TX to review the partnership’s achievements over the past six months and consider the future.
President George W. Bush and Mrs. Laura Bush, whose vision led to the organization’s creation five years ago, offered opening remarks. They thanked the partners for their contributions, and Pres. Bush described his impetus for founding Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon, saying it broke his heart to hear about women dying of preventable and treatable diseases even as they were surviving HIV. “It’s a moral duty of our country to impact human suffering. That’s definitely the spirit of Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon,” he said.
The meeting covered topics ranging from fundraising and advocacy to programmatic updates. Breast cancer screening and vaccination against HPV, the virus that causes cervical cancer, were particular areas of programmatic focus, as Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon considers how to build on its activities in these areas for greater impact. Country-by-country updates on all the partnership’s activities reflected a long-standing objective to secure the sustainability of programs for the long term, managed and funded by National Governments. Finally, CEO Celina Schocken sought and received feedback on updating the organization’s strategic plan, and revising the structure of the partnership to appropriately reflect partners’ contributions to Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon.
The meeting was a fantastic opportunity to hear from our partners and ensure we are aligned in our work to address cervical and breast cancer.
By Jennie Aylward, Pink Ribbon Red Ribbon Consultant