Elyse Spatz Caplan, MA, Director, Programs and Partnerships
Elyse brings a unique professional and personal perspective to her position at Living Beyond Breast Cancer. Not only is she an accomplished programming expert who oversees LBBC’s educational programs, she is also a 20+ year breast cancer survivor. Elyse integrates her diverse experiences and depth of knowledge in breast cancer research, treatment and survivorship issues into LBBC’s annual programming that includes national conferences, webinars, LBBC’s peer support Helpline, regional community meetings, outreach to medically underserved women and presentations to health care professionals.
The influence that Elyse’s diagnosis, treatment and recovery had on her is a major factor in her ability to intelligently and compassionately advocate for women of all ages diagnosed with breast cancer. Elyse serves on review committees for LBBC’s print and online publications. She is a talented speaker who is well-respected by national and international breast cancer organizations and advocacy groups and is frequently asked to serve on advisory boards and steering committees to help influence public opinion and understanding of breast cancer from the patient and advocate perspective and, more importantly, the short and long-term care for women diagnosed at all ages and stages of the disease.
Elyse is a passionate advocate for underserved women living with a history of breast cancer. She oversees LBBC’s Project Connect initiative for African-American women ensuring that culturally specific resources are available that are easily accessible and culturally relevant and respectful. In 2011, Elyse was invited to represent LBBC at the inaugural Consensus Conference for Advanced Breast Cancer (ABC1) in Lisbon, Portugal. During the conference, she presented an oral presentation to over 700 clinicians from around the world summarizing the results of LBBC’s needs assessment on women diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer.
An accomplished fundraiser, Elyse forges partnerships with nonprofit organizations, foundations, government agencies and pharmaceutical companies and has been a key factor in LBBC’s growth over the past five years. In 2008, she worked with the LBBC leadership team to secure LBBC’s first multi-year grant from the National Philanthropic Trust to expand programming and build organizational capacity. In 2011, she worked diligently with LBBC staff to secure a three-year, $750,000 cooperative agreement from Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to assess the unique needs of young women diagnosed under the age of 45 and then develop programs and resources based on the findings. She currently serves as a liaison representative for LBBC on the federal Advisory Committee on Breast Cancer in Young Women.
Since joining the staff in 2000 Elyse has represented LBBC at professional and consumer conferences, and she serves as an LBBC spokesperson for national and local news media. In 2009, she received LBBC’s highest honor, The Founders Award, for her outstanding professional contributions to educating and supporting women affected by breast cancer and their families.
Previously Elyse served as program coordinator for breast cancer clinical trials at Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia. She coordinated Einstein’s Cancer Center psychosocial program, where she facilitated support groups, developed and implemented initiatives to enhance quality of life and well-being for people undergoing cancer treatment and empowered patients to advocate for their health. Elyse has served as a consumer reviewer for the Department of Defense Breast Cancer Research Program and as a grant reviewer for the Avon Foundation Breast Care Fund.
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