MS WOMEN ON THE MOVE - Event Details
2013 Keynotes: Jeff and Wendy Marco
After 10 years of keeping his MS diagnosis a family secret, Jeff Marco and his wife, Wendy, were moved to finally share their personal experience with multiple sclerosis in 2012. Jeff challenged himself to climb Mt. Whitney in California, the highest mountain in the lower 48 with a summit of 14,505 feet and brutal alpine terrain. The climb was the catalyst that impelled Jeff and Wendy to tell friends, family, and colleagues about his diagnosis, and to become fundraisers for the National MS Society.
While Jeff was making the physical journey, Wendy was his support system and his biggest cheerleader. Together, they raised nearly $37,000 in just 10 months to fuel research initiatives and help local families dealing with MS just like them. Jeff and Wendy share their inspirational story of family, commitment, determination, and the power of community.
"Ultimately, you have to find your mountain and climb it. MS is not your mountain. MS is the obstacle that tries to keep you from climbing that mountain. Don’t let it. Push through.” - Jeff Marco
2013 Emcee: Cynné Simpson
Cynné Simpson is an Emmy Award and Edward R Murrow Award winning anchor for ABC7/WJLA-TV. She’s covered worldwide news and entertainment stories from the historic wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton in London to the Red Carpet of the 2011 Oscars.
She was the first to interview Oprah Winfrey after it was announced the Oprah Winfrey Show was ending. Cynné has also done exclusive interviews with Michelle Obama at the White House, Diane Sawyer, Maya Angelou, Muhammad Ali and countless others.
In 2011, Cynné co-hosted ABC 7's primetime Oscars Red Carpet Special and a Tribute to Oprah Winfrey. She has also contributed reports to "Live with Regis and Kelly," "Extra!," and “The Donnie Simpson Radio Show.”
Prior to joining the team at WJLA, Cynne was an evening anchor at WGCL in Atlanta. She also worked at KCTV in Kansas City and WNDU in South Bend, Indiana. Cynné got her start in television working behind the scenes at ABC News Nightline where Ted Koppel personally selected her for a fellowship.
Cynné speaks Spanish fluently after studying abroad in Spain and Costa Rica. She graduated Magna Cum Laude from Howard University in Washington DC and in 2011, was honored by the University for her commitment to giving back.
The US State Department sent Cynné to Barbados in 2009 to help facilitate better relations between Caribbean journalists and the United States. Cynne is a spokesperson for ABC 7’s “Drive to Stay Alive” campaign.
Cynné’s community and professional achievements earned her the top spot on Ebony magazine’s list of Leaders for the Future. She was also presented a Congressional Award for Community Service.
When Cynné isn't working, she's usually traveling to remote parts of the world. She loves adventure sports and is constantly looking for places to hang glide, rock climb, swim with sharks or try something new.
Across the country, over 20 chapters host MS Women on the Move Luncheons with attendees who come to learn more about MS and give from the heart to honor and support friends, family members, neighbors, and colleagues who live with the disease.
See photos from the 2012 Luncheon - Courtesy of Amanda K. Gilley
Since childhood, our 2012 Keynote Speaker Kristie Salerno Kent dreamed of a career in entertainment. In 1999, just a few years after receiving her Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts from Syracuse University and starting to fulfill her professional ambition, Kristie was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. Just when she thought her dreams were out of reach, she began playing a new role in her own life, using her obstacles as an inspiration for success. She shares her journey with MS, the value of family and support systems, and the importance of never giving up.
In 2011, the event featured keynote speaker Zoe Koplowitz. Author of “The Winning Spirit – Life Lessons Learned in Last Place”, Zoe’s journey is fueled by her desire to show others the beauty of courage in the face of adversity. Living with the daily challenges of both MS and Diabetes, Zoe’s tireless spirit has driven her to finish 22 marathons to date, all of them in last place. She shared her lessons learned along the way including faith, intention, commitment, self acceptance, and the power of humor.
In 2010, singer, musician, and actor David Osmond and his father Alan Osmond, founder of the famed troupe of singing brothers, shared stories of overcoming challenges, and of determination and accomplishment as a family facing MS.
In 2009 Former US Cycling Team member Maureen Manley shared her story about living with MS while realizing her goals as a life coach, consultant, and designer of the MS Wellness Center in Seattle, Washington.
In 2008, Dr. Dora Hughes, Health Policy Advisor to Senator Barack Obama, and Dr. Mary Hughes, Medical Director of the Augusta MS Center and Rehabilitation Services in Georgia, shared their experiences of life with MS and the progress being made towards a cure.
In 2007, columnist and best-selling author Jacquelyn Mitchard shared her perspective as an advocate and best friend of someone living with MS. In 2006, MS Lifelines Ambassador Rain Pryor, daughter of the late comedian Richard Pryor, shared her experience as a child of a parent with MS. Actress and National MS Society Ambassador Teri Garr shared her story of life with MS in 2005.
For more information, please contact the Chapter at (202) 296-5363 or WomenOnTheMoveDC@nmss.org.