Cancer Institute Patient Promoting Teal Power 5K

Debbie Walter of Cincinnati has been engaged in a two-year battle against ovarian cancer, and she has taken that battle from her hospital room to the public arena. “Ovarian cancer is now my full-time job,” says the former fashion consultant.

She joined the board of the Ovarian Cancer Alliance of Greater Cincinnati as co-chairperson. Her husband, Andy, also joined, as treasurer. His experience on the Multiple Sclerosis Society board helped the couple “grow this small organization into a much larger group,” says Debbie. In fact, they created the alliance’s first board of directors, and included two local specialists, among them her own doctor, Jack Basil MD, chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Good Samaritan Hospital.

Teal Power 5K Raises Awareness for Ovarian Cancer

The Walters have revamped the organization’s website and are promoting major fundraising events during the year. The Teal Power 5K run/walk is held in September to help mark Ovarian Cancer Awareness Month.

There is also a girls’ high school basketball tournament every winter, at which the team members wear teal uniforms – the official color of ovarian cancer awareness – and pass out information about the disease.

The group also appears at health fairs and other events to get the word out. “Debbie is raising awareness,” Dr. Basil says. “That is where she is trying to make a difference.” Behind the scenes, Debbie and Andy are trying to raise money through corporate sponsorships and more fundraising outreach. “I am still a little timid about asking for money, but people take me more seriously when they know what I am going through,” she says. “To my husband, this is personal. He never felt comfortable asking for money for the MS Society. But he has no problem asking for help here.”

Tags Cancer