Diagnosed with invasive breast cancer in 2006, AnneMarie Ciccarella embarked on a path of patient advocacy in 2011 when late onset and worsening effects of cognitive issues caused by chemotherapy forced her off her former career path. Her mom, with two separate breast cancer diagnoses at twenty-year intervals, is now living with metastatic disease. This has made AnneMarie more determined than ever to encourage people to look beyond the pink ribbon.
AnneMarie sits on a number of scientific advisory boards, has served as a patient advocate on research grant applications and has participated in the peer review process to evaluate applications for funding recommendation. From bench to bedside, she believes the patient voice should be included along the entire continuum of care.
She has lobbied Congress for research funding and was invited to a join a group of advocates at a White House meeting with high-level administrators. Interviewed on radio, TV, online video and featured in number of national print magazines, she has spoken at several different venues on all aspects of patient engagement.
Recently her advocacy moved into the area of mental illness and diseases of the brain and is she currently working on a project to address the effects of cancer and its treatments on sexuality. AnneMarie believes in the power of social media to learn, to teach and above all, to support others.