Judy Medeiros Fitzgerald
Consumer Advocate for Phase I Trial of Adjuvant Therapy With an α-lactalbumin Vaccine in Patients With Non-Metastatic Triple-Negative Breast Cancer at High Risk of Recurrence
Judy was diagnosed with bilateral breast cancer in 2009 and her treatment included a double mastectomy and reconstruction. Since her diagnosis, she has been an active advocate for breast cancer prevention and founded Sisters4Prevention in 2010. Judy serves as a consumer advocate for the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Grant Program and is an active blogger on social media. Her passion is diet and lifestyle changes that can help survival as well as supporting the development of a vaccine for the prevention of breast cancer. Judy is a graduate of Providence College with a BS in Chemistry and served as a science and computer teacher until her retirement in 2008. In 2015, she was selected by Ford Motor Company as a “Warrior in Pink” for her service to the breast cancer community. She serves as a patient advocate for the pending Phase I clinical trials for the preventive breast cancer vaccine under the direction of Dr. Vincent Tuohy.
Judy is primarily responsible for conceptualizing, writing, editing and promoting all the content for the Toni Turchi Foundation website. She was selected in 2016 by Ford Motor Company as a Warrior in Pink. At the invitation of the National Breast Cancer Coalition she will be participating in Project LEAD training this July. She is the author of the book, A Teacher’s Journey…What Breast Cancer Taught Me, the proceeds for which benefit breast cancer prevention research. She is a retired Catholic School Teacher and serves as a Cruise Host along with her husband for the Signature Hosted Voyages Travel Program.
Founder and Executive Director, Toni Turchi Foundation
Toni Launched the Toni Turchi Foundation in 2012, following a diagnosis/treatment of triple-negative breast cancer. She endured five (5) months of chemo, a double mastectomy, and thirty-six (36) rounds of radiation. She’s worked extensively raising funds for Cleveland Clinic’s Learner Research Institute. Today, much of Toni’s time is spent researching the importance of life-style change and how it can use the mind-body connection to a cancer patient’s advantage to enhance both mental and physical health. She serves as a patient advocate for newly-diagnosed women/men with breast cancer and her mission is to aid and inspire hope for women affected by breast cancer. Toni refers to herself as “NED” – No Evidence of Disease, and takes nothing and no one for granted.
Toni is responsible for the operations, management, administration, and the grant making decisions for the TTF. Most importantly, she is accountable to the people it serves, to its funders, the attorney general, and the general public.
Women Who Care about Breast Cancer
Dr. Marjorie Moyar was born in Akron Ohio and for fifty-four years has lived in Cleveland, earning her master’s degree at Cleveland State University and her Doctorate at Case Western Reserve University. Prior to beginning her profession as a psychologist, she taught history at Lakewood High School. For the past fifty years, Dr. Moyar has been a very active parishioner at Saints Constantine and Helen Greek Orthodox Cathedral. She is a past president of the parish.
Dr. Moyar has been involved with Philoptochos, the women’s service and philanthropic organization at her church, and served for many years on the national Board of that organization, where she co-chaired the Family and Society Committee. Dr. Moyar’s Cleveland civic activities include service on the Board of the Benjamin Rose Institute on Aging and on the Board of the Hitchcock Center for Women, which she chaired for the initial four years of its existence. Currently, she serves on the Board of the Cleveland Institute of Music.
She and her husband, Bert, have three sons, two daughters-in-law and five grandchildren.
Marjorie’s first work as a licensed psychologist was at Merrick Hall, which was the in-patient unit for chemically dependent women at Woman’s General Hospital. Her thirty-five years of private practice always included women in recovery. In March of 2018, she concluded her private practice to engage in more public service. Eight years ago, she started a coalition named Women Who Care About Breast Cancer to support the development of a breast cancer vaccine by Dr. Vincent Tuohy, the Mort and Iris November Distinguished Chair in Innovative Breast Cancer Research at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute. In 2010, the Cleveland Clinic recognized his work as the most innovative and significant of that year. She currently serves as co-chair of that organization with Susan Larson. What led her to support Dr. Tuohy’s work were her own encounters with breast cancer and her desire to assure her two granddaughters could overcome their possible inheritance.
This is the language we asked for and the language Debbie Wasserman Shultz championed and passed the house in HR 2740:
Clinical Trials for Primary Prevention of Breast and Ovarian Cancers: The conferees direct NCI to develop a “Request for Applications” (RFA) supporting expenses for phase I, phase II, phase II/III, and phase III clinical trials focused on primary immunoprevention of breast cancer and primary immunoprevention of ovarian cancer, i.e., prevention of these cancers in cancer-free subjects. Support will include costs related to GMP and GLP expenses, direct subject/patient expense reimbursement associated with enrollment, participation, retention, long-term patient outcomes, and long-term research outcomes. The trials will involve relevant underrepresented and minority communities. NCI is encouraged to develop the RFA in consultation with NCI-designated Cancer Centers, the National Clinical Trials Network, the NCI Community Research Program, and non-profit foundations currently working in this area. The conferees direct NCI to provide a description of its plans for this study to the Committees on Appropriations of the House of Representatives and the Senate within 90 days from the date of enactment of this Act.
Senate budget actual language: H.R. 1865 / Public Law 116–94
Gynecologic Cancer Clinical Trials.—NCI is encouraged to work with stakeholders to address priorities for the gynecologic oncology clinical trials scientific agenda, including consideration of the availability of trials for these patients.