Named one of fifteen Disruptive Women to Watch in 2015, along with the Honorable Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Maria Shriver and Elizabeth Holmes, Kym shares her journey as a 4-time cancer survivor to help executives, clinicians, patients and families embrace a 21st-century approach to healthcare leadership.
Long before her initial Hodgkin’s Lymphoma diagnosis in 1983 at the age of seventeen, Kym endured trauma and drama. Years of family dysfunction drove her down a path of self-destruction that she believes launched an unforgiving assault on her lymphatic system. Early signs of her poor choices went unnoticed and she wonders if her diagnosis could have been prevented had her parents and doctors tuned in and encouraged emotional intervention.
Three decades ago, childhood cancer was a rarity and survivorship was dubious. Peer support was sparse and the Internet was in its infancy. Forced to internally process her cancer experience, Kym extracted life lessons that reached beyond her years and carried her through her subsequent melanoma, breast cancer and basal cell carcinoma diagnoses. And with each new diagnosis, a deeper well of insight emerged that Kym draws on every day.
Cancer survivorship is a multi-faceted, whole person experience that impacts one’s physical, emotional, mental, spiritual and social dynamics of self. Navigating four unique cancer diagnoses during three distinct phases of life and electing three different treatment paths has taught Kym an abundance of life and leadership lessons designed to (1) transform fear, (2) embrace change, (3) renew self and (4) engage others. The key insights she shares can help improve life at home, work or play and are suited to patients, families, clinical providers and healthcare executives.
She invites all members of her audiences – whatever their current health status – to think like a cancer survivor. In doing so, she illuminates the wisdom that cancer survivorship holds for those of us who have endured, those of us who provided care and those of us who may one day experience overwhelming fear upon hearing, “You have cancer.”
Authentic, smart, inspiring and empowering, Kym has an open and genuine approach to addressing challenging and troubling topics. She is one to search for deeper meaning and impactful ways to navigate cancer, integrate patient feedback, improve patient-centered care and practice wholistic living.
Kym is a graduate of Bryant University and received her Master’s in Business Administration from University of Connecticut. She is also a Certified Wholisitic Nutrition Consultant and Fitness Trainer who employs an array of complementary therapies and integrative medicine for her personal cancer management and her family’s health. She embodies the possibilities of 21st-century healthcare.