Meet our newest team member!

my last bday with Momma
*How did you get involved with The Project?
My life drastically changed on February 16, 2011 when my lovely mother passed away after her almost five-year fight against colon cancer came to an end.  About a year after she passed away, I searched for organizations in the area that would allow me to donate my time and energy to this important cause.  I was immediately drawn to The Project and its mission, and knew from the initial conversation I had with Andrea Shepherd that this was the perfect organization for me to be involved with.  I am extremely excited to have been offered the newly created position of Community Outreach and Survivor Support Manager, and I look forward to all the opportunities this role presents for me and The Project!  I am eager to work with and get to know each of you--together we will kick colon cancer's butt!
 
 
*What excites you about this line of work? 
I am excited about many things, but one of the most important to me personally is the passion I have behind this cause and our mission.  Everyone has their own "story" and I am excited to learn others' stories, and to share mine with others with the hope that they will not experience what I did in the loss of my mother.  I believe that we are already making a difference, and I am excited to be involved in all the work we are doing to continue achieving wonderful things.  I have never been in a line of work that I am as passionate about as this.  I now truly look forward to coming to work every day and completing each task with passion, and I believe there is nothing greater!
 
 

*Describe how your early work experiences (high school and/or college) shaped your work ethic.

I attended DuPont Manual Magnet High School here in Louisville, and I felt extremely prepared for college after completing the rigorous Mathematics/Science/Technology program.  Just days into my college career, my father announced to the family that he had been laid off from his job.  I contemplated whether or not to remain at Xavier University since it was a private, out-of-state university.  Thankfully, I chose to remain there and worked three jobs while going to school full-time.  The strict scheduling and organization that this situation mandated led to the development of my strong work ethic, and enabled me to graduate in seven semesters from the Honors Program with my Bachelor of Science in Business Administration (BSBA) in Management degree from Xavier's Williams College of Business. 

 

*Why Louisville?

My family moved to Louisville when I was 5 years old, and I thoroughly loved growing up here!  Many of my best friendships were developed here, and thankfully they have withstood the test of distance, as various life experiences have led me to live in Cincinnati, OH, Indianapolis, IN, Dayton, OH, and Philadelphia, PA after graduating from high school.  After two years in Philadelphia, I realized I belonged in Louisville, so I moved home.  While my mother will unfortunately miss many of my life accomplishments, I am so happy that she shared the milestone experience when I purchased my first home in May of 2010.

 
 
*What is one interesting fact about you that most people don’t know?
I once had to go to the doctor's office to have a pea removed that I had stuck up my nose.  Sadly, I must admit that this was not the only such event.  Other incidences included an M&M removed by my mother, as well as an infected piece of foam from my preschool "naptime" mattress.  Long story...but thankfully I no longer have any desire to stick foreign objects up my nose!
 
*What is your motto you live by?
My high school senior quote, which I continue to find is true: "That which does not kill us makes us stronger." - Friedrich Nietzche 
 
*What is some advice you were given long ago and still live by?
In many different situations growing up, my father always encouraged me to "Rise Above."  I remind myself of those two simple words often, and feel the power of doing so continuously.
 

*What is your guilty pleasure? (Yes, we mean the one you are slightly embarrassed to admit.)

I know my boyfriend will be proud of me admitting that my current guilty pleasure is, in fact, playing CandyCrush.  If you have never played, I believe you are missing out!  It is something I do at night before bed, and I love the different challenge each level presents.  I have loved jigsaw puzzles since I was very young (and still do), so this presents a new avenue for me to fulfill the desire for mental challenge.  I am currently on level 241.  Who else is a fan?

 

*If you could go anywhere in the world right now, where would you go and why?

I do not think Heaven qualifies, but there are so many places I would love to travel to!  Currently, I would have to say the Maldives for a beautifully relaxing vacation.  Every single picture I have seen of that area is truly breathtaking, and I feel it would be a wonderful escape and chance to recharge in a serene atmosphere.  Anyone interested, please feel free to sponsor my trip there.  :)

Comments  

 
0 #1 Suzanne Gude 2014-06-24 13:15
Welcome to the cancer battlefield! It's good to know that another compassionate, energy-filled, deeply committed soldier has joined our ranks!

Thank you for sharing a bit of your story with your mother's presence. I lost my beautiful father-in-law to this dreadful disease so I can relate some to your experience.

I know you're going to be fantastic in this position because someone who has volunteered her time to a cause makes for a dynamic employee for that same cause!

I hope our paths cross one day. Wishing you all the best!

Sincerely,
Suzanne Gude
Cancer Control Specialist
KY Cancer Program
Lincoln Trail District
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