Ginny L. Clements Breast Cancer Institute brings community together through Beauty + Bubbly event

Oct. 9, 2023
Beauty + Bubbly

Community members, survivors, patients and researchers gathered on the UACC patio to honor breast cancer awareness month.

Everyone in the cancer community needs an annual event where they can meet up, hear about inspirational cancer survivors, learn about new technologies, and enjoy a little something bubbly.

Event attendees listen as Ginny L. Clements tells them her experience with breast cancer.

Event attendees listen as Ginny L. Clements tells them her experience with breast cancer.

On Oct. 5, the University of Arizona’s Ginny L. Clements Breast Cancer Institute, part of the UArizona Cancer Center, held the Beauty+Bubbly breast cancer awareness event under pink-draped tents on the center’s terrace. 

More than 70 people attended, including patients, survivors, caregivers, clinicians and basic scientists.

During the event, Ginny L. Clements told the story of how she found out she had cancer at 15 years old, and how she not only survived it, but was able to have an active high school experience, complete with cheerleading and other activities. 

In 2010, Clements said she began to disclose her breast cancer journey after reading a book about a woman who died of breast cancer in 1980, Susan G. Komen by her sister, Nancy Brinker, that inspired Clements to open up to others and to create the institution nine year later.

“I feel that research is our only answer,” Clements said. “For all of you that have breast cancer or are a survivor, you are all sisters and brothers to me.”

Alan Chiang, MD, discusses new advances in imaging

Alan Chiang, MD, discusses new advances in imaging.

Alan Chiang, MD, PhD, division chief of breast imaging, site director of the Advanced Breast Imaging Center and program director of the Breast Imaging Fellowship, told participants about the latest mammography advancements and the importance of early detection through testing.

Nova Foster, MD, FACS, medical director of the Breast Program in the Department of Surgery, discussed the advances in surgery concerning lumpectomies and mastectomies, and how systemic therapies involving new drug treatments have resulted in improvements to treatment.

Nova Foster, MD

Nova Foster, MD, explains the newest, innovative surgery techniques in mastectomy and lumpectomy.

“It seems like almost every day there are new research discoveries, and new drugs and clinical trials, so it's really an exciting time to be involved in breast cancer," Dr. Foster said.

Speakers also included Mindy Griffith, executive director of Bag It Cancer, and Marcy Poreda, owner of Glow Designer Wigs.

Participants enjoyed makeovers from Tullia Salon & Spa, gift bags from Dillard’s, and giveaways from the Cancer Center’s Office of Community Outreach and Engagement, coordinated by Namoonga Mantina, research program administrator and doctoral candidate. Bag It Cancer and Glow Designer Wigs also met with participants.

“We hope you leave here knowing that there is an entire community of people dedicated to preventing and curing cancer who care about you,” said Joann Sweasy, PhD, Cancer Center director.

Joann Sweasy, PhD, Cancer Center Director

Joann Sweasy, PhD, Cancer Center director, introduces Ginny L. Clements.

The Ginny L. Clements Breast Cancer Institute thanks Drs. Terry Badger, Jennifer Bea, Sima Ehsani, Jennifer Erdrich, Jennifer Segar, Cynthia Thomson, Karen Weihs, and Monica Yellowhair, and to Alaina Krone and Elizabeth McPeak for attending the event and supporting the local cancer community.