Frontline Edition IV, 2020

Page 1



2020, Volume IV

Funding the Treatments of Tomorrow: Researchers Selected to Receive PBCC Grants MEET OUR 2021 RESEARCH GRANT WINNERS


4.3 million

to PA breast cancer researchers

UPMC's Dr. Vera Donnenberg, 2019 PBCC grant winner uses her funding to study metastatic breast cancer therapies


Alessandro Fatatis, MD, PhD Drexel University

he PA Breast Cancer Coalition is proud to announce the researchers selected to receive $50,000 breast cancer research grants in 2021: Alessandro Fatatis, MD, PhD, Drexel University Targeting Metastatis-Inhibiting Cells

Zachary Schug, PhD, The Wistar Institute Epigenetic Remodeling in HER2+ and Triple-Negative Breast Cancer

Zachary Schug, PhD The Wistar Institute

Adrian Lee, PhD, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Estrogen Receptor Fusion Genes as Drivers of Endocrine Resistance Breast Cancer

Every year, the PA Breast Cancer Coalition provides funding to outstanding researchers working to find the cause of and cure for breast cancer. Our peer review panel composed of expert researchers and survivors chooses winners based on a number of criteria. With this funding, scientists are able to get their big ideas off the ground and qualify for even larger grants from agencies like the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Congratulations, 2021 PA Breast Cancer Coalition research grant winners! Want to make a gift toward the PBCC's research grants initiative? >>

Adrian Lee, PhD University of Pittsburgh Medical Center

Don't Miss your Mammogram! Breast cancer diagnosis rates are down, which sounds like a good thing, but it's not. Many women are delaying their mammograms. Please don't put it off! Mammography centers are open and ready to screen you safely! Are you uninsured or underinsured OR Have you lost health insurance coverage due to COVID-19? You may be eligible for a FREE mammogram!





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Breast cancer has not stopped and neither will we. Are you with us? Join the PBCC's fight to find a cure for breast cancer now... so our daughters won't have to.

Get started and make an impact today! Visit to learn more




Survivor Spotlight


Tell us about learning you had breast cancer. STACIE: Back in April 2020, when we were all under quarantine, I felt a lump. Dr. Google said “Boobs are lumpy…” I thought nothing of it. Exactly one month later, that lump didn’t go away. In fact, I thought maybe I felt two lumps! Reluctantly, I called my doctor, who got me in for an appointment the following day, two days before my 36th birthday and a holiday weekend. It was June 1. Another daunting Monday morning under quarantine with two kids under 4, and back-to-back conference calls. The new “normal." It was 8:30am, I hadn’t even finished my coffee. I was sitting next to my 4-year-old son watching cartoons and my 17-monthold daughter is on the ground playing nearby, when my cell phone rings. I answer, and all I hear is the doctor’s voice. She got right to the point: "Mrs. Crane, I’m sorry, but you have cancer."I think all I could muster up was “Okay… what now?”

I recall the nurse walking me out the back door of the office, before I left she asked me if I had help at home because I wasn’t going to be able to function normally once I started treatment. I remember staring back at the nurse dumbfounded. It was like she was speaking in another language. I sort of waved her off, saying “No thank you” and “I’ll be okay."

There is no one to hold your hand. No hugs allowed! You just have to sit and cry while a stranger tells you everything will be okay. It brings out another side of you, a side you may not know you had in you. A strong, resilient side. From there I found my mantra: “I can, and I will.”


The doctor allowed me to call my husband. I put him on speaker as she walked us through my diagnosis: Stage 2 breast cancer, invasive ductal carcinoma, triplenegative.

Stacie and her husband Anthony, their son AJ and daughter Mia - "this was the day after I got my port."

Do you have a support system by your side? STACIE: I have a village! My husband was shook after my diagnosis, but he didn’t skip a beat! He took on all the childcare and home responsibilities without hesitation. I am thankful to have family nearby.

It wasn’t until I was in my most vulnerable state that I saw the strength in me to start my regrowth. I am not going to be the same woman I was before cancer… but that doesn’t have to be a bad thing."

I truly had no idea. You received treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic. What was that like? STACIE: Treatment during a pandemic is one word… lonely. I remember crying during the blood draw for my pre-op bloodwork before my port was placed, just a few weeks after my diagnosis. I know the nurse felt awful, she thought she had hurt me. I wasn’t crying because I was in pain, I was crying because I was scared.

Before I went public with my diagnosis, I asked my boss at Volkswagen if we could hold a call with the team so I could share the news with them first-hand. I view them as an extendsion of my family. I needed them. They have been nothing but amazing every step of the way. What message would you share with newly diagnosed women? STACIE: You are not alone. This might not be a club you ever imagined you would become a part of, but it is a sisterhood and an extensive community of wonderful caring people.

I remember opening the care package from PBCC and crying. I didn’t know that someone who had never met me could care so much - or that this community was so vast! It brought me hope, and allowed me to start to lower my defenses. I needed to accept the fact that, for once, I needed to lean on other people for help and guidance and that was okay. Stacie's Volkswagen family made a surprise gift to the PBCC in her honor. Turn to page 7 for details!

WOW! Mid Penn Bank CEO Rory Ritrievi presents Pat Halpin-Murphy with a donation at the State Capitol. Mid Penn has contributed over $300,000 to breast cancer survivors and researchers in PA. Thank you, Mid Penn Bank!





3 1. Mid Penn Bank - $75,000 2. Rally Fore the Cure - $21,340 3. Pink Zone - $5,000

4 4. Pat Webberking Butterfly Memorial - $3,590 5. Dance for Life - $1,510 6. Field of Screams Zombie Fun Run- $4,800

6 7. Pink Party at Kitchen Kettle Village - $900 8. Hero in the Fight - $400 9. Orangetheory Fitness Lancaster - $378










10. GEODIS - $3,779 11. Regulators Baseball Team - $1,963 12. Cumberland Valley Corvette Club- $1,500

13. State College Field Hockey - $4,450 14. Lebanon County Commission for Women - $740 (gift made in honor of Alicia Richards)




15. Women's Harrisburg District Golf Association - $7,650 16. Tree Top Golf Course Golf 'Til You Drop - $6,308 17. Lancaster Plumbing, Heating, Cooling and Electrical - $2,100 18. CJ's Tire & Auto - $4,000 Host an event in your community! Visit to get started


MEDICAL NEWS Meet Pennie: Enroll Today for Health Coverage in PA Jessica Altman

Commissioner, Pennsylvania Insurance Department


ennsylvanians now have a new way to access health coverage. The Commonwealth transitioned from to Pennie, our self-sustaining health insurance marketplace and the home for high-quality, affordable health insurance plans.

Pennie provides customers three free avenues for assistance: • Customers can call the Pennie Call Center at 1-844844-8040 to work with a trained customer service team member who can answer questions, direct customers to online resources, as well as to in-person specialists.


Pennsylvania’s state-based exchange was created by Act 42 of 2019, which was passed unanimously by both chambers of the General Assembly and signed into law by Governor Wolf on July 2, 2019. The mission of Pennie is to help Pennsylvanians get the coverage they need, with increased access to financial assistance for which they may be eligible to help lower their monthly costs. Affordability is now more important than ever, as many have lost employersponsored coverage as a result of COVID-19. Pennie is committed to educating Pennsylvanians and raising awareness about the marketplace as a resource for assistance and financial options to help pay for coverage.

access to employer-sponsored coverage, as well as Pennsylvanians who are uninsured.

Pennie is the home for highquality health insurance plans for those who need to buy insurance for themselves and their families. The launch of Pennie is a landmark step for healthcare in the Commonwealth."

• Customers can also schedule an appointment with a Pennie-certified Assister. Pennie’s assisters, who have been trained to assist both in-person and virtually, are available to walk customers through their options and the enrollment process.

• If customers seek more support with choosing the best plan, they can find a Pennie-certified Broker. Brokers are professionally trained to work with customers one-on-one and can help narrow down their options. Unlike other unbiased resources, Pennie-certified brokers can recommend the plan they feel is best suited for the customer.

Pennsylvania consumers began shopping for health insurance coverage through Pennie on November 1, 2020. The state-based platform extended the Open Enrollment Period through January 15, 2021; four weeks longer than

Pennie is the ONLY place that can connect Pennsylvanians to financial assistance to lower monthly payments and/or out-of-pocket expenses.

Pennie is dedicated to helping customers transition from as well as individuals and families without

Nearly 9 out of 10 Pennie customers qualify for financial assistance. For more information, visit

Enroll Today! Apply online at through January 15, 2021


Drive out & about


with the PA Breast Cancer Coalition

Hopeful Road Ahead: PA Car Dealerships Join Forces to "Drive Out Breast Cancer" This October, car dealerships across Pennsylvania celebrated Breast Cancer Awareness Month by participating in the 6th Annual Drive Out Breast Cancer campaign. The dealerships below donated a portion of ALL October sales in support of breast cancer survivors and researchers in our state. THANK YOU to the incredible participating dealerships for helping to find a cure for breast cancer now... so our daughters don't have to. A special thank you to our Drive Out Breast Cancer coordinators, Helen Michener and Laraine Forry!

Since 2015, Drive Out Breast Cancer has raised more than $160,000 for the PBCC!

SURPRISE! Volkswagen Donates New 2021 Atlas SUV to PBCC Following Fire A highway fire totaled the PA Breast Cancer Coalition's beloved van in May. Volkswagen of America staff heard the news and decided to make a surprise announcement at the PBCC Virtual Conference. Igor Skinder, Sales Operations Manager for the North East Region of Volkswagen, shared the secret: VW would be donating a brand new 2021 Atlas to the PBCC! Check out the wrap design! "One of Volkswagen's own," Stacie Crane, was diagnosed with breast cancer this year. Read Stacie's story in the Survivor Spotlight on page 3.

Wrap design for our new 2021 Volkswagen Atlas donated by Volkswagen Group of America

2397 Quentin Road, Suite B, Lebanon, PA 17042 800-377-8828

Need Health Insurance? Apply now for coverage with More info on page 6!

Open enrollment runs from Nov. 1, 2020 to Jan. 15, 2021