Introducing Caitlin H. Lewis, MS: LBBC’s new senior vice president of strategy and mission
Change and taking the big picture view come naturally to Caitlin Lewis, who was born in Ridley Creek State Park, Pennslyvania and moved often during childhood, as her father worked for the Department of Conservation and Natural Resources. A graduate of Bucknell University with a degree in psychology, Lewis earned a master’s degree in clinical and counseling psychology at Chestnut Hill College and built a career in the management and growth of behavioral healthcare organizations including Devereux, Merakey, and Recovery Centers of America & Genetworx Laboratory.
In this next phase of her career, Living Beyond Breast Cancer offers Lewis a unique opportunity to focus on women’s health and to connect with a community that she has come to value personally. When Lewis’ mother passed away from ovarian cancer when Lewis was 21, she was advised of the possibility that her mother’s cancer could have a genetic factor. Lewis therefore opted for genetic testing after her first child was born. Testing confirmed that she was a BRCA1 mutation carrier, and she elected to undergo prophylactic mastectomy in 2017 and oophorectomy in 2019.
Lewis had become aware of LBBC during her seven-year journey, but she didn’t realize that the organization served previvors as well as those diagnosed with breast cancer. When Lewis learned of the opportunity to work with LBBC she realized it was a perfect chance to apply her skill set to an organization that is personally meaningful.
“I had looked at other women’s health organizations, but LBBC’s focus on empowering and supporting people, no matter how they come to us, fit my personal values. LBBC’s approach to the psychosocial aspect of cancer and advocating for community aligned well.
“The emphasis on diversity and equity in care is also of huge importance to me,” Lewis said, adding that her Hispanic ethnicity has given her a unique perspective on equity needs in healthcare and patient advocacy.
As senior vice president of strategy and mission, Lewis will focus on growing LBBC’s footprint by expanding awareness and partnerships to reach more people in need of LBBC’s services.
“That includes how we market, how our messaging is sent, and how we gather feedback to make sure what we’re doing resonates and has impact,” Lewis said. “From the mission side, the job will entail being a brand ambassador, advocating for the community, for equity, and looking at things through a comprehensive lens.”
Lewis plans to begin to tackle the challenges by listening to the LBBC team at every level to hear what they consider important and want to grow, as well as by seeking feedback from the community as to which services people are gravitating toward and what they feel should be offered.
“What I know from being trained as a therapist is the importance of listening and getting feedback in order to build trust and connection,” Lewis emphasized. “Without that, it would be hard to expand the organization in a way that meets the needs of the community and staff. It’s the skill I rely on first and foremost.”
Lewis lives in Harleysville with her husband, Jeff, and sons Maddox, 8, and Talon, 5. The boys are both baseball players, so Lewis is often cheering from the stands. The family enjoys outdoor activities ranging from kayaking and camping in the mountains to spending time together at the beach.
And now that September is here, Lewis is eager to get started in her new job.
“I’m excited to get to know the community and to grow LBBC in a way that’s meaningful and impactful,” she said. “I’m excited that I’ve found a role that’s a perfect blend of my personal and professional experience and to which I can bring a perspective from both ends.”
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