September Volunteers of the Month: Komen Young Professionals

This month’s volunteer of the month spotlight goes to an amazing group of influential movers and shakers in our community. It is with great pleasure we announce that the Komen Young Professionals are our Volunteers of the Month!

IMG_0929The executive team of Komen Young Professionals (KYP) just wrapped up a successful Style for the Cure Fashion Show in late August all while working full-time jobs. Becca Thomas, director of events and marketing at Komen Columbus, says the group’s attention to detail made the event memorable for all those who attended.

“The 13 members of the KYP executive committee, led by Vanessa Butler and Heather Massey, put hours of time and energy into the event and all their efforts paid off – more than 80 attendees were on site August 17 at the event that raised nearly $10,000,” said Thomas.

The KYP executive committee is comprised of: Vanessa Butler, Mike Corey, Heather Gilbert, Carla Hall, Kim Jennings, Maria Massenelli, Heather Massey, Kelly Norman, Molly Osmon, Nikki Reiss, Amy Shea, Lori Summers, Laura Vaughn, and Michelle Wong Halabi.

We are proud of this group for their leadership and commitment to Komen’s mission. KYP’s President, Michael Corey, shares some insight to this amazing group and their motivation to advocate on Komen’s behalf.

What (or whom) inspired you to get involved with Komen Columbus?

Our executive committee has a passion for service generally—most if not all of our members are involved with other non-profit organizations, in addition to all the time and energy they devote to KYP. But with Komen, it’s personal. We have members that have lost loved ones to breast cancer, and we have members that have loved ones that are survivors of breast cancer. But we’re all committed to preventing the former and being able to celebrate the latter through advocacy, awareness and fundraising. We see that as our role, and we are committed to expanding the good we do for young professionals in Central Ohio.

What’s your favorite part about volunteering with Komen Columbus?

We take great satisfaction in knowing that our efforts are making a difference. Knowing that every young woman better educated in early diagnosis has a better chance of surviving; knowing that the dollars we raise are going toward grants and toward research; and knowing that we can and are playing a role in improving survivorship rates—that’s all we’re here to do.

But we also enjoy getting to know others, and certainly one another, through our events which are geared toward being both informative and fun. Being able to build relationships through Komen is very gratifying and we’re grateful to have the opportunity to do so.

What is the most memorable moment or event you’ve experienced with Komen Columbus? And why?

I suspect our most memorable moment thus far was our recently completed fashion show and seeing the survivors and their supporters have a great time and be received so well by a packed house. That was the perfect confluence of what we seek to do as a group; putting on the show is a great deal of work, and to see it come together like that was very exciting and very rewarding.

When you’re not volunteering for Komen Columbus, what do you like to do?

We each have demanding jobs, and we each bring our own set of diverse interests and commitments to the table. Some of us commit a lot of time to fitness, some of us are heavily involved in other outstanding non-profits in town, some of us love to travel. But we all have a passion for this city, and for doing our part to make it a little better. We feel both Komen and the city of Columbus have given us much, and we hope we’re giving equal or more in return.

Stay connected with Komen Young Professionals on Twitter @KomenColumbusYPFacebook  or their website.

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