“Sandra Goldberg, MS, PhD, has made it her mission to ensure that Chicago residents—regardless of financial circumstances or insurance status—have access to information and education, screening, diagnosis and treatment for breast cancer.
Dr. Goldberg, the on-air health and nutrition contributor for the local NBC affiliate, documented her own breast cancer surgery and treatment in an Emmy Award-winning TV special, One Woman’s Story. Following the special, she hosted a 13-week call-in show about cancer and found that many callers were asking for medical advice because they could not afford to go to a doctor. That experience profoundly affected Dr. Goldberg and motivated her to establish the nonprofit organization, A Silver Lining Foundation (ASLF), in 2002.
Today, ASLF runs five cancer-related programs. Its most high-profile, Buy a Mom a Mammogram®, provides cost-free mammograms, diagnostic testing and treatment at 12 partner hospitals in greater Chicagoland and Rockford areas. Since 2006, more than 7,000 women and men—99 percent without health insurance—have benefited from these potentially lifesaving services. In the past two years, 25 women have been diagnosed with breast cancer.
ASLF’s Survive to Thrive program offers breast cancer survivors no-cost follow-up diagnostic testing, and its Keep aBreast program educates young women between the ages of 15 and 19 about breast self-examination and early detection. Its Chicagoland Cancer Information Coalition connects participants with information and resources through 20 participating organizations.
“Sandy is a champion for the women we serve, insisting that our partner hospitals treat ASLF ladies with the respect and dignity they deserve,” says ASLF volunteer Nancy Amicangelo. “She is my hero!”