Monday, June 30, 2008

"Project Red Dress" 2008 a SUCCESS!

In slightly more than a week we will celebrate my mothers eighth birthday. Naturally, it isn’t her actual birthday, that day falls on April the 18th of every year. No, this birthday is the day we celebrate her successful open heart surgery, which bypassed three blockages in arteries of her heart. On July 10th we’ll mark eight years of life and love that we may not have had if she hadn’t received an accurate diagnosis in time. As a woman suffering from heart disease nearly a decade ago, she almost didn’t. Since that time I’ve made it my personal mission to make sure that every woman I have the opportunity to come into contact with has the weapons they need to protect themselves from the nations leading killer of women.

This last weekend I was so honored to speak to the group of ladies who assembled for the second annual “Project Red Dress” event. “Project Red Dress” is in conjunction with the “Go Red for Women” campaign. Designers from across the state and nation designed amazing red gowns, which were modeled in a fashion show. Winners were chosen from both a professional and amateur category, and each winner received round trip airfare to New York and tickets to the national “Go Red” fashion show. There were approximately 500 women in attendance, and I was thrilled to be able to share with them the mission of “Go Red”, and invite them to join the “You’re the Cure” network. I always speak about my mothers experience obtaining a diagnosis, and my own struggle to receive treatment. I am always overwhelmed by the response of the audience. Sadly, there are always attendees who share with me stories of their loved ones struggle to get an accurate diagnosis, for which there was no happy ending. It is my dream and mission to see to it that every woman gets the adequate care that is needed to insure that no one die an early and senseless death from heart disease.

You’ll also no doubt notice that I am wearing a banner in these photos. I am so excited and honored to be Mrs. Southeast International 2008. I will be leaving for Chicago on July the 14th to compete in the 2008 Mrs. International pageant. Mrs. International really embodies all that is good and of value in married women’s pageantry. Mrs. International is a woman of high moral fortitude, integrity, passion, drive and honor. This incredible organization has partnered with the American Heart Association, and has chosen "Go Red For Women" as their national platform. Having been involved in "Go Red" since it's inception I cannot imagine a better opportunity to promote both organizations which hold such a special place in my heart.