Meredith College bestowed its annual Woman of Achievement Award to Nancy Goodman Brinker on April 21, 2010. The award recognized her accomplishments as founder and CEO of Susan G. Komen for the Cure, UN Ambassador for Cancer Control, and former US Chief of Protocol and US Ambassador to Hungary.
President Maureen Hartford presented the award to Brinker on behalf of the Meredith community.
“We thank her for teaching a generation of women and men how to move mountains and follow dreams,” Hartford said. “She is truly a catalyst for change.”
When accepting the award, Brinker acknowledged previous recipients Judy Woodruff, Celine Cousteau and Phyllis Trible, ’54, who was the inaugural recipient of the award.
“The previous winners were a crusading journalist, an environmentalist and a theologian,” Brinker said. “Some days, that is a pretty good approximation of my job.”
Drawing on her remarkable life as a breast cancer survivor, catalyst of an international health movement and U.S. ambassador, Brinker presented a lecture that detailed her work as the founder of Susan G. Komen for a Cure and her experience in public service.
“A passion, a dream, an idea – these are the pivot points that turn history,” Brinker said.
After describing the atmosphere around cancer treatment when her sister, Susan G. Komen, was diagnosed as a time when “there was tremendous social stigma about cancer,” Brinker explained that her promise to her sister to erase this stigma inspired her life’s work.
“That was my own pivot point to change history—a history that was hurting people,” Brinker said. “We were determined to bring breast cancer out of the shadows.”
Susan G. Komen for the Cure has since raised nearly $1.5 billion that has been invested in breast cancer research.
“I am proud to say Susan G. Komen for the Cure is leading the fight not just in the U.S. but all over the world,” Brinker said. “The Race for the Cure is a journey for all of us from Raleigh to a village in Africa. We are all in this journey together.”
This lecture was part of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Presidential Lecture Series at Meredith College. Each year, the series is designed around Meredith’s campus theme. For 2009-10, the campus theme is “Catalysts for Change.”
The Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Presidential Lecture Series at Meredith College stimulates and enhances the intellectual and academic climate at Meredith College and the broader community.
Date Submitted: 2010-04-21
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