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The Susan B. Komen Foundation Names A New CEO

Posts: 4376
Joined: Jun 2009

The beleaguered Susan G. Komen Foundation has named a nationally known health policy and research expert in Washington to replace founder Nancy Brinker as its chief executive, the breast cancer charity announced Monday.

The new chief executive is Judith A. Salerno, 61, currently executive director and chief operating officer of the Institute of Medicine, part of the National Academy of Sciences, which advises the government and private sector about health and science.

Brinker will serve as chair of global strategy, effective immediately, according to Komen spokeswoman Andrea Rader.

Salerno’s official start date is Sept. 9, but she is expected to attend Komen’s annual leadership conference in Dallas on Friday and meet with representatives from Komen’s affiliates. Salerno also plans to spend two to three days a week during the summer at Komen’s Dallas headquarters, Rader said.

The move is the latest effort by the charity to restore credibility to one of the strongest brands in the nonprofit world. It comes more than a year after a funding controversy involving Planned Parenthood severely damaged the organization, hurting fundraising and morale.

Brinker initially did not want to give up her role as chief executive, prompting Salerno to take herself out of consideration, according to one source familiar with Komen’s business operations. Some within the Komen organization are concerned that Brinker’s presence will mean she will continue to make decisions behind the scenes, the source said.

“I don’t know any of that intrigue,” Rader said. The board has made clear that Salerno will be in charge, she said, and everyone, including Brinker, will be reporting to Salerno.


Hopefully, this will help,


jessiesmom1's picture
Posts: 868
Joined: Jun 2010

I responded to SIROD's comments in a post about metastatic bc funding with this very same information within the last hour. We can only hope that this once well respected organization will be restored to its former level of credibility/respectability with this change at the top.


Lynne P
Posts: 165
Joined: May 2013

Thanks for the information Jan!  I hadn't heard this yet.  I hope it helps the foundation too.


Posts: 115
Joined: Jun 2013

Just hoping that Brinker will still not be calling the shots and that this isn't just a publicity stunt to try and clean up their reputation.

Thanks for the article survivor.


CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

It doesn't make me feel all warm and fuzzy that she just raised her own salary in spite of profound losses.  The sad thing here is that the big loser is research and breast cancer.

I hope she steps aside and lets experts (non-political) run the organization.  In the meantime, I have switched donations to BCRF (for some time now). 

DianeBC's picture
Posts: 3886
Joined: Jun 2009

Didn't hear about this.  I would have thought it would have made the world news, but, I haven't seen it.  The foundation has done a lot of good for breast cancer patients/survivors.  It's kind of like the Lance Armstrong cheating and lieing.  I try to focus on the good! 

Hugs, Diane


CypressCynthia's picture
Posts: 4014
Joined: Oct 2009

I know the organization has done some good, but why would Brinker increase her salary by 64% after promising to step down nearly a year ago?  And donations are way down and they are cancelling walks.

"In early 2012, Komen announced it was pulling its grants for breast-cancer screenings from Planned Parenthood, drawing an immediate backlash from Komen supporters and abortion rights advocates. Within days, Nancy Brinker, the group’s founder and CEO, reversed the decision to defund the organization. Then, in August, Brinker announced that she would be stepping down.

But 10 months later, Brinker still holds her position and tax documents reveal that she received a 64 percent raise and now makes $684,000 a year, according to the charity’s latest available tax filing.  Komen says the raise came in November 2010, prior to last year’s controversy." http://openchannel.nbcnews.com/_news/2013/06/10/18869742-susan-komen-ceos-salary-draws-fire-as-donations-drop-races-are-canceled?lite

Now I read she is being replaced by Salerno and I just don't know what to think.  What happens to her giant payraise?  Frankly I want my donation to go to research these days and have targeted my donations that way.  My opinion :-).

Cheryl S
Posts: 82
Joined: Jun 2013

The Susan B. Komen Foundation has been an intricate part in raising awareness and funding for breast cancer for many years.

It doesn't affect my life in anyway as to how much money or how much of a raise Mrs. Brinker has.  She has opened up a lot of doors, raised a lot of money for breast cancer and educated many.

I will always donate to the Foundation, as I do the ACS.


camul's picture
Posts: 2536
Joined: Dec 2010

and didnt want to step down leads me to believe that she is still going to be way too involved. That she was willing to draw a salary that was so over the top when the organization was floundering and that no one on the governing board stopped it or spoke up makes me wonder if there isnt a need to replace more than just her! I believe that this has a great effect on all with bc as well as those to come after us. I agree they made more people aware of bc but some of this over spending would do wonders if it was shifted to research for advanced bc, which involves 30% of those diagnosed! I personally like St. Judes, at least there I have always known my money was put to good use.

SIROD's picture
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Joined: Jun 2010


It is a lot easier to say your not affected by where the money goes when you don't have metastatic breast cancer.  We all want to live and finding a cure is paramount to why money is being raise.  No one denies Mrs. Brinker her accolades; from her taking bc out of the closet but somewhere along the way, perhaps being politically involved as Ambassador and etc.,  she lost her way.


Posts: 4376
Joined: Jun 2009

Everyone wants a cure to cancer, even those not diagnosed!  Anything that brings awareness to breast cancer, October, pink ribbons, Relay for Life, is always good. 

How Brinker gets her money and how much may not be what we think is right.  I just pray for a cure, from anyone, any organization, any person, a cure!  That's what is important, for all cancers, all stages, all grades. 


Posts: 1191
Joined: Dec 2010

Brinker was the highest paid CEO of any non-profit organization by a landslide. She also charges Komen for first class tickets when she flies "for Komen work purposes." When I heard that I thought, she is no longer in it for the breast cancer, she is in it for herself. She also had some lucrative other job either before this or during, can't remember. I stopped caring about Komen when I heard about her shenanigans. Then the Planned Parenthood fiasco. Then I heard rumblings of people in serious need of help and were refused. And don't forget about how they had the money to sue little mom and pop organizations that were raising money for cancer and used part of Komen's slogan.

I believe that she was probably doing good for breast cancer in the beginning, but I agree with Sirod. I believe she became too greedy. I no longer have any repsect for Brinker or Komen. They have a lot of work to do to repair their reputation.

Anyone know what the new CEO is earning?


Ritzy's picture
Posts: 4382
Joined: Aug 2009

No, I don't know.  I have to give Nancy credit, as some said, for bringing attention to breast cancer.

Sue :)

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