Breast Cancer Awareness

Komen Pink Elevator in Ann Arbor

As an 11-year breast cancer survivor, First Lady Sue Snyder is passionate about helping connect women with the resources they need to have access to necessary and often life-saving cancer and treatment programs. She is an active supporter for multiple breast cancer organizations across the state.

Early breast cancer detection is key to survival and greatly enhances the odds of beating the disease. In Michigan, breast cancer is the most frequently diagnosed cancer and nearly 7,500 women are faced with this diagnosis each year. State programs such as Healthy MI and the MDCH Breast & Cervical Cancer Control Program have helped thousands of Michiganders gain access to preventative breast cancer services, like screenings and mammograms.

Snyder knows first-hand how important it is to have access to medical professionals, treatments and a strong support system. Breast cancer is treatable if detected early, but treatable doesn’t mean easy. Cancer places a burden not only on the one facing the diagnosis but often on an entire family. Snyder is no stranger to the struggles a family faces when a loved one is fighting breast cancer.  In addition to fighting cancer herself, Snyder lost her mother to the disease and her grandmother fought it as well. Snyder has been a supporter of breast cancer research organizations since before her time as First Lady, she now uses her voice to further raise awareness and support Michigan women by volunteering with the below organizations and initiatives:

Shades of Pink Foundation:
The Shades of Pink Breast Cancer Foundation works to provide temporary financial assistance to Southeast Michigan women experiencing monetary hardship as a direct result of breast cancer diagnosis and treatment. Connecting families with resources to help lessen the financial burdens of treatment helps allow women and families to stress less, focus on healing, and spend quality time together.

Earlier this year, Snyder served as honorary co-chair for the foundation’s 10th anniversary and 8th annual walk at the Detroit Zoo. The event raised more than $287,000 and is the foundation’s largest fundraiser with 100% of the proceeds going directly to breast cancer patients and families. Snyder also participated in the 2014 Walk at the Zoo and is looking forward to continued involvement with the organization.

Susan G. Komen Foundation:
First Lady Snyder has participated in multiple Susan G. Komen breast cancer support events across the state.  Both she and the Governor have walked alongside metro Detroiters to help raise awareness for the disease and support the organization’s largest Race for the Cure event in Detroit. She has also been a supporter of multiple Race for the Cure’s across the state.

Snyder is also a proud supporter of another Susan G. Komen partnership which is fairly new to the organization. Earlier this year the first “Komen Pink Elevator” was launched in Ann Arbor, MI as part of a national campaign to further raise awareness of breast cancer in Michigan and across the country. The project, a partnership between Susan G. Komen and Metro Elevator Co. which places bright pink construction elevators on high profile construction projects as part of a social media campaign, aims to help garner support for breast cancer research across the country. Michigan has been selected as the home for two of the pink elevators, the inaugural elevator in Ann Arbor and a second elevator in Kalamazoo. There are currently more pink elevator projects in the works and the First Lady is looking forward to further supporting the initiative.

The Michigan Breast Cancer License Plate:
In October 2014, the First Lady was on hand to help unveil the state’s Breast Cancer Awareness License Plate. The plate helps support the Michigan Breast & Cervical Cancer Control Program, which works to provide vital and lifesaving resources to low-income women.

Featuring the iconic pink breast cancer ribbon and the phrase, “Early Detection Saves Lives,” Snyder is honored to support the special cause license plate which is part of a larger collection of plates the sales of which help fund a number of statewide initiatives.

In 2013, the most recent year for which data is available, more than 29,999 Michigan women received breast cancer screening services through the BCCCP. For additional information or to order the breast cancer plate, visit your local Secretary of State of