Annual Pink Event slated for Saturday; raises awareness of cancer and funds for patients

A Pink Event – MLC Cancer Foundation’s Breast Cancer Wellness Symposium & Fundraiser will be held Saturday at 3:00 p.m. at the New College Institute.

The event aims to honor the lives of cancer survivors. The foundation was established by Patricia Via in 2012 to help cancer patients and survivors. Via has raised over $180,000 since founding her organization, which is named after her mother, the late Myrtle Lee Carter.

The event will feature three speakers: Indira Lindsay Roberts, Dr. Nayo Wills and Dr. Tiffany D Morris.

dr Nayo Wills will explain the common functional medical tests that she and other specialists perform for the initial assessment. She said her message was “just so people can understand some basic information that they want to know.”

This is Indira Lindsay Roberts’ third time speaking for the MLC Foundation at the Pink Event, and while her message has changed somewhat over the years with new technologies and offerings, she said the basic framework remains the same — to raise awareness of the Raising importance of genetic testing that cares about your health.

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dr Tiffany Morris’ message at the event will be about belief versus fact, she said, diving into the conversation that “strong belief” doesn’t mean you can’t also trust science to heal. In her dissertation and in her speech, Morris talks about how faith can sometimes be an obstacle or a conflict of interest when it comes to “trusting science.”

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Wills received her bachelor’s degree in anthropology from the University of Virginia and her doctorate in medicine from Jefferson Medical College and completed her residency in internal medicine at Washington Hospital Center. She holds board certification in internal medicine from the American Board of Internal Medicine and recently completed her training in functional medicine and was certified at the Institute of Functional Medicine. She is also certified in acupuncture.

Wills has practiced functional and integrative medicine for nearly 17 years, has spoken professionally for over 20 years, and uses that knowledge to reach her audience to find answers and find the root cause of their symptoms.

Roberts is the regional manager for oncology and women’s health at Invitae Genetics. She holds a bachelor’s degree from North Carolina Central University, a master’s degree in law from Seton Hall School of Law, and a certificate of achievement in fundamental genetics from Harvard Medical School.

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For Invitae Genetics, Roberts sells “somatic oncology testing products,” and some of her work covers the Martinsville area, she said. She met Misti Williams, a Salem, Virginia genetics consultant who connected Roberts to Patricia Via’s daughter, Telesa Via, and the MLC Cancer Foundation.

Morris is a Martinsville native now residing in Eden, North Carolina. She earned National League of Nursing-certified nursing educators, a bachelor’s degree in nursing from the University of Virginia, a master’s degree in higher education with a specialization in integrative studies, and a master’s degree in nursing. She has a doctorate in nursing practice from Grand Canyon University and has been accepted into the University of North Carolina’s School of Nursing Faculty Fellows program.

Morris is the first chair of Elon University’s Department of Nursing. She has been involved with the MLC Cancer Foundation since its inception and has attended often. She became involved with Telesa Via due to her connection to the Via family through attending school.

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Money raised will be used to help provide mammography breast screening and diagnostics to uninsured women, financial assistance to cover medical costs for treatments, and to help cover the cost of genetic testing.

Two cancer patients at Saturday’s event will receive $2,500 toward their cancer treatment costs at the event, and all attendees will take home resources to support their health journey.

Destination DC, EH Hodge Automotive Group and Donohoe Hospitality are event sponsors, and Martinsville-Henry County Coalition for Health and Wellness, Martinsville Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., Ypsilon Delta Zeta Martinsville Chapter of Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Inc. , Martinsville City Police Department and VCU Cancer Massey Center are 2022 Community Partners.

Donations to the MLC Cancer Foundation can be made before, during and after the event by visiting and clicking the donate button at the top right of the page.

Monique Holland is a reporter for the Martinsville Bulletin. She can be reached at [email protected] or at 276-734-9603.


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