National Board of Directors

This is a fabulous organization that provides one-on-one support to breast and ovarian cancer patients. The volunteers are survivors and give an amazing amount of personal time and energy to provide support for patients, their friends and family members. It's amazing what these women do for FREE! I tell all new breast cancer patients about Breast Friends. I consider them a key resource and don't know what I would do without them!

~Spotblue

Trustees in Support of the Mission

Breast Friends’ governing body is made up of a national board including the two co-founders, executive officers, and board members who also oversee the Oregon Affiliate. We also have Local Advisory Boards in each other affiliate location. To see the local affiliate board members, please visit each affiliate page separately.

Executive Officers

Becky Olson
Co-Founder & Director of Community Outreach

Professional Speaker & Author
Retired-Sales Manager-Dex Media
Diagnosed 1996, 2004, and 2009
Becky, Co-FounderBecky is a three-time survivor of advanced stage breast cancer, diagnosed in 1996, 2004, and again in 2009.  She left her job as a sales manager for Dex Media in 2005 to pursue her role as Co-Founder and Director of Community Outreach of Breast Friends. Becky has also developed her skills as a professional speaker and now travels all over the country sharing her experience and inspiring her audiences.  She is the published author of, “The Hat That Saved My Life,” which was published in 2004 with a second printing in 2007, as well as a contributing author of several other books. She is a wife of over 36 years, mother of five, and grandmother of four, with an amazing rescue dog, Swayze. Learn more about Becky.


Sharon Henifin
Co-Founder & Director of Programs

Certified Life Coach
Retired-Sales Manager & Trainer-Dex Media
Diagnosed 1993
Sharon Henifin, Co-FounderSharon co-founded Breast Friends in 2000. She was a Sales Manager and eventually a sales trainer at Dex Media where she spent 30 years. Finally in 2006, she retired to work full-time in her role as co-founder of Breast Friends. She became a Certified Life Coach in 2008 and expanded the Breast Friends survivorship program. She is a published author with chapters in two publications and is presently working on her first book. She also speaks, facilitates her workshops and sells her photography around the area. She has three grown children and four grandchildren. She lives in Tigard with her husband.


Gail LeVine

Board President – 2015
Board Member since 2014
Senior Oncology Specialist – Eisai Inc.
Gail LeVine
Gail has been a strong supporter of Breast Friends since 2012. Gail is a Community Ambassador and promotes the valuable psychosocial support that Breast Friends provides within Oregon’s cancer clinics. She works for Eisai educating the oncologists in Oregon. She has been recognized by Eisai Inc. for her work with Breast Friends and won the 2014 Human Health Care Activity Award for the Americas and the Global HHC Encouragement Award. She received the Breast Friends coveted “Angel Award” in October 2014.


Karen Donovan
Board Secretary – 2015

Board Member since 2014
No Photo Available
Karen brings more than 20 years of healthcare executive sales and business development experience to the organization.  She is passionate about improving the patient experience and currently serves as a Sales VP at VIA, Inc., which specializes in translation, localization and eLearning services directed towards the Healthcare, Technology, Compliance and Legal industries. Here at Breast Friends, she has the opportunity to further promote health literacy and support. Karen’s prior roles include Market Development at Kryptiq Corporation, as well as Business Development and Senior Leadership roles at Quest Diagnostics and SmithKline Beecham. She holds a BA in Management and Organizational Leadership from George Fox University.

 

Charlie VanRossen
Board Treasurer – 2016
Board Member since 2016
No Photo AvailableBio coming…

 

 

 

 

Board Members at Large

Linda Adams
Board Member since January 2014
Community Ambassador
Diagnosed 2010
Linda Adams, Board MemberLinda brings with her a real passion for Breast Friends and its mission to help cancer patients. She has been a valued volunteer since 2010 and has been a speaker at the Joy of Life Fundraiser and Survivor Luncheon. As a board member and volunteer she strives to always be available to help in any way necessary from taking women to medical appointments for Breast Friends, chairing our decorations committee, or speaking at community events. Linda is also a spokesperson for early detection, she is passionate about speaking on the importance of breast self-exam.

 

Cynthia Aks, DO
Board Member since January 2016
Legacy Medical Systems

Cynthia AksA Board Certified General Surgeon in practice since 1990 and a dedicated breast surgeon since 1997. Her practice focus is influenced by an interest in Integrative Medicine with principles in Holism. She is a strong patient advocate with a kind, calming and compassionate bedside manner. Dr Aks is a seasoned surgeon with skills to include, but not limited to, office based ultrasound and stereotactic breast biopsy, cryoablation and ductoscopy. She has experience in program development and have worked in a NAPBC accredited comprehensive breast center. Dr Aks is a certified yoga instructor with a special interest in yoga therapy and has training in Reiki therapy and a special interest in nutrition as it relates to health. She is a lover of nature, music, dancing, scuba diving, cooking and have a passion for life and learning.

 

Marjorie Elken
Board Member since June 2016
Attorney, Buckley Law PC
Margie delivers exceptional value for closely-held business owners. Her clients know that with one phone call they can pass off their legal issues, and Margie will either handle them or get them to the right person. Margie also advises companies navigating the rapidly evolving laws and regulations for legalized marijuana.  Prior to going to law school, Margie worked in both local government and the insurance industry – two entities that businesses often have to face.  Margie’s insight into how these entities function helps her find practical and efficient solutions for her clients.

 

Ty Hall
Board Member since 2016
Ty brings over 16 years of healthcare sales along with business development to the Breast Friends organization. He is passionate, driven and is always willing to go out of his way to help patients both with his current role with Foundation Medicine and with our organization. Here at breast Friends, he has the opportunity to further promote our services to his existing clients. In addition, help Breast Friends become a household name in every Oncology office. He holds a B.S. in Communications from Oregon State University. In his pastime, Ty likes spending time with his wife Diane, three kids Taylen, Eric and Rebecca, their dog Marley and two cats Mr. Wiggles and Fred. He also enjoys being outside, working out, watching and playing sports, reading and just enjoying life.

 

Theresa Langdon, MD
Board Member since 2016
Dr. Langdon has been a primary care physician in Portland for 30 years. She is passionate about her work and has always been a strong advocate for her patients. She is an active volunteer, and has served on the boards of the Portland Adventist Community Services Clinic, Children First for Oregon, the Portland-Milwaukie Light Rail Project Citizen Advisory Committee, Oregon Mensa, three schools and her local neighborhood association. She has had several articles published in the Placebo Journal. In her free time, Dr. Langdon enjoys riding her Harley Davidson Softail and playing the accordion, but never at the same time..

 

David B. Page, MD
Board Member since January 2016
Medical Oncologist
Providence Medical Group
Providence Portland Medical Center

David B PageIn addition to providing compassionate and individualized care for patients with cancer, Dr. Page’s mission is to improve the quality of that care by dedicating himself to clinical research and by reflecting upon the unique experiences of each of his patients. Dr. Page’s research investigates new cancer treatment approaches that harness the ability of an individual’s immune system to recognize, attack, and eliminate cancer. Dr. Page grew up in Niagara Falls, New York, and spent much of his childhood cooking at his family-owned restaurant. He did his fellowship at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York, N.Y. He is excited to join the Portland community, where in addition to advancing breast cancer care, he continues to be an avid cook, camper and dog owner.


Advisory Committee

Kelli Houston
Board Member since December 2014
WA State Training Director for Embassy Management LLC
Kelli_H-crpdKelli Houston, MBA, has served on several nonprofit boards as co-chair, president and secretary most recently co-chair of Kaiser Permanente multi-cultural committee. She has over 20 years of nonprofit leadership including co-founder of AIDS Network of Arizona and Vision Consulting both serving diverse communities providing healthcare services and community supported programs. Currently she serves as a Manager at Kaiser Permanente Westside Medical Center overseeing volunteer service operations for the newly designed medical center. Kelli has an MBA and Bachelor of Science degree specializing in Business Management. In her spare time, Kelli performed on stage as a standup comedian and auditioned for NBC’s Last Comic Standing. She is also a golf and Seattle Seahawks aficionado.

Brad Lebowsky
Non-profit Consultant
For more than 30 years, Brad has successfully managed national and international Fortune 250 companies exceeding in operational excellence and the training and development of top managers. In addition, he has a strong commitment to the community exhibited by volunteering and consulting with local and national nonprofit organizations. For more than 20 years Brad has been successful in fundraising, strategic planning, and leadership training for board members which has resulted in millions of dollars in donations. He helps us with strategic planning, grant writing and wise counsel to help our organization grow.

R. Craig Byrd, PhD
Financial Consultant-Owner, Byrd Financial Group, Inc.
Craig Byrd has been a supporter of Breast Friends since the inception of our organization. He has supported us financially and emotionally by providing networking and staff support for our programs and projects. Craig lost his wife Carol to breast cancer, so he holds our cause near and dear to his heart.

Scott Fish
32 Degrees Digital Marketing
Board Member since March 2015
Scott’s company 32 Degrees Digital is helping businesses find and cultivate the best digital channels to successfully forge meaningful relationships with customers. He has offered his assistance to take Breast Friends to the next level with website improvements, social networking and his overall marketing expertise.

Gary McGee
Certified Public Accountant – Non-profit tax professional
Gary is the founder and managing director of Gary McGee & Co., a firm that focuses exclusively on providing accounting, audit, tax, and management advisory services for nonprofit organizations. He has worked in the tax-exempt community for more than 25 years and practices extensively in the areas of charitable giving and solicitation, trust administration, and federal grant and contract compliance. He lectures frequently on nonprofit subjects and provides counsel to tax-exempt institutions throughout the country on financial, accounting, and tax matters.

Kayla Victor
Public Affairs Liason
Kayla
is an expert in building professional relationships. She uses her expertise as a communications consultant and community outreach professional to help Breast Friends make new contacts; create awareness and help with advocacy.

Tatiana Melendez-Rhodes, Ph.D. LMFT
Dr. Melendez-Rhodes is a Clinical Fellow of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT). She received her M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in Marriage and Family Therapy from the University of Connecticut. She is also a licensed Clinical Psychologist from Peru. She was awarded with the prestigious Fulbright Scholarship allowing her to pursue her studies in the United States. Dr. Melendez-Rhodes has been teaching graduate courses of marriage, family therapy and supervision in the US and she has taught undergraduate courses in the Department of Psychology in several universities in Peru. She incorporates her extensive clinical experience and teaching to her research. Dr. Melendez-Rhodes has presented her work in national and international conferences. She plans to create a research project showing how important emotional support is to quality of life and its effect on healing.