Be the Boss Over Cancer

Kate Sweeney, Executive Director


Kate Sweeney

Kate Sweeney is the Executive Director of the CEW Foundation and the co-founder of the Cancer and Careers program. She began with a vision — to eliminate fear and uncertainty for working people with cancer. Now 13 years strong, Cancer and Careers is the recognized authority on work-related support for cancer patients and survivors. The pioneer program boldly leads the discussion on where life, cancer and work intersect.

Under Kate’s leadership, Cancer and Careers serves more than 300,000 people online, in print and in person each year. Program highlights include launching a first-of-its-kind interactive career coaching center for survivors to get personalized advice from professional coaches; bringing direct services to remote and underserved communities in the U.S.; partnering with Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) to offer company-wide support within the workplace; and collaborating with QVC to present “Beauty with Benefits,” a two-hour beauty-product fundraising telecast that has raised over $2M to date in support of Cancer and Careers’ free programs and services. In addition to running the $2.5M CEW Foundation, Kate continues to serve as an expert on the issues surrounding cancer in the workplace. Kate currently lives in Boulder, Colorado, with her husband and twin sons.

Rebecca V. Nellis, MPP, Chief Mission Officer


Rebecca Headshot

Rebecca Nellis is the Chief Mission Officer for Cancer and Careers. Since 2004 she has helped evolve the organization from early concept to national prominence.

Rebecca now oversees all mission-driven initiatives, including the long-term strategy and growth of Cancer and Careers’ many programs and services. As an expert on cancer-workplace issues, she travels the country speaking at national cancer conferences, leading hospitals and community events — more than 100 presentations to date — about the intersection of life, work and cancer. Rebecca also serves as spokesperson to the press, with recent interviews published in The ASCO Post, Everyday Health, NY Daily News, Women’s Health, and AOL Finance, as well as on NPR, NBC New York and CBS Salt Lake City.

Prior to this position, Rebecca served as Vice President of Programs and Strategy at Cancer and Careers. Under her leadership, the organization launched its National and Regional Conferences on Work & Cancer, accredited Educational Series for Healthcare Professionals, and library of Spanish-language resources. As an active member of the cancer community, she is currently on the steering committees for Workplace Transitions for People Touched by Cancer and Breast Cancer: A Story Half Told — Supporting Workplace Conversations, and has served on committees for the Livestrong Young Adult Alliance (now Critical Mass) and Stupid Cancer.

Rebecca holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from New York University and a Master of Public Policy degree from Georgetown University. Her graduate thesis was entitled “Implications of Cancer Survivorship on Financial Assets, Work Productivity and Employment Circumstances.”

Becky Nelson, Director of Development

Phone: 646-929-8019


Becky Nelson is the Director of Development at Cancer and Careers. A seasoned and passionate fundraiser with a decade of experience in the nonprofit sector, she began her career in development and relationship-building as Director of Development for the City Bar Justice Center, the non-profit affiliate of the New York City Bar Association. As a Senior Account Executive at Susan Ulin Associates, Becky continued to hone her expertise by providing innovative leadership and fundraising strategy for a broad range of international, national and local non-profits.

Most recently, Becky was a Senior Development Officer at the American Red Cross. Directing all fundraising efforts for the Long Island chapter during Superstorm Sandy, she was a strategic part of the largest disaster response and fundraising effort ever to impact the Greater New York region.

Becky holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Law and Society from New York University, where she graduated Magna Cum Laude. Her passion for serving those in need extends beyond her professional endeavors, as she participates in many volunteer activities with children and other organizations serving the cancer community.

Christine Q. Brennan, Associate Director, Programs

Phone: 646-929-8030

Christine Brennan photo

As Associate Director of Programs, Chrissy oversees Cancer and Careers’ annual national conference, expanding regional conference program and website, bringing to the role two decades of experience in communications, public relations, marketing and event management.

After spending 14 years in digital and print media focusing on women’s health and fitness, including staff roles at Health and Self magazines and at Lifetime Television’s website, Chrissy joined the Peace Corps in 2003, serving as a Health Education Resource Volunteer in Kenya. Upon her return from Africa she consulted for the National Geographic Society and the Wildlife Conservation Society and in 2006 joined the staff of Selldorf Architects as Marketing Director. In 2010, Chrissy became Account Manager at the boutique PR/marketing firm Maloney & Fox, part of Waggener Edstrom Communications, where she worked on the corporate citizenship campaign for a global real estate client. Prior to arriving at Cancer and Careers, Chrissy managed the 25th anniversary awards competition and gala for the non-profit Greeting Card Association in 2013, including a corresponding exhibit at the Javits Center.

 A native of Westport, Connecticut, Chrissy holds a B.A. in English from the College of the Holy Cross.

Rachel Becker, LMSW, Senior Manager, Programs

Phone: 646-929-8031

Rachel Becker photo

As Senior Manager of Programs, Rachel’s responsibilities include oversite of Cancer and Careers’ thirteen accredited webinars. She also provides direct support and referrals to CAC’s diverse audiences; co-manages the travel scholarship program for the National Conference on Work & Cancer; and works to ensure all programs meet the continuing education accreditation standards of various state and national accrediting bodies. Additionally, Rachel regularly presents on topics related to cancer and work at community-based events and cancer conferences around the country.

Before joining Cancer and Careers, Rachel was Head of Client Services at CarePlanners (cofounded by Dr. Nancy Snyderman), where she designed and implemented a technology-based infrastructure for delivering and monitoring support services. Prior to that, she completed a fellowship in psycho oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and worked in a clinical capacity at the Jewish Child Care Association and New York Methodist Hospital. 

Rachel holds a B.A. from Rutgers University, and graduated summa cum laude with an MSW from NYU’s Silver School of Social Work. She is a member of NASW, AOSW and a proud recipient of the Zelda Foster Fellowship in Palliative and End-of-Life Care.

Lindsay Mitcher, CFRE, Development Manager

Phone: 646-929-8021


Lindsay joined Cancer and Careers in 2013 as the Development Manager. She focuses on donor relations in order to advance fundraising events and activities, including the annual Beauty of Giving Luncheon, Beauty Editor’s Closet Sales and cause marketing partnerships. She is responsible for Development communications, database management, analysis and reporting. Lindsay works collaboratively with and supports the Director of Development and the Executive Director in all areas of fundraising, special events and board relations.

Lindsay holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration with a concentration in Marketing from the University at Buffalo and a Professional Certificate in Fundraising from New York University. Prior to her role at Cancer and Careers, Lindsay worked as the Marketing and Development Specialist for Richmond Community Services, a non-profit organization within the health and human services industry.

Sarah Goodell, Manager of Programs

Phone: 646-929-8023

Sarah Goodell

Sarah Goodell is a Manager of Programs at Cancer and Careers. In her role she manages a range of programs and events, including the Beauty of Caring events, the Financial Consulting Program and the Midwest Conference on Work & Cancer, as well as coordinating PR efforts and social media. She also manages the newsletter, online career coaching and research projects. Before joining the Cancer and Careers staff, Sarah worked in corporate social responsibility at the public relations firm Edelman. At Edelman she worked on communications strategies for a variety of organizations across a range of issue areas, from sustainable energy to children's oral health. Prior to Edelman, Sarah interned at SAP in their Corporate Social Responsibility division where she created a social media strategy for the group and assisted in the development of their global school partnerships program.

Sarah was also a fellow with the Hamilton College Alliance for Nonprofit Strategic Advancement and an intern at the Advocates for Human Rights, a non-profit organization in Minneapolis where she maintained their Stop Violence Against Women website and conducted research on a range of human rights related issues. She graduated cum laude from Hamilton College with a B.A. in Communications and World Politics.

Nicole Shaffer, LMSW, Manager of Programs

Phone: 646-929-8043

Nicole Shaffer

Nicole Shaffer joined the team in October of 2015 as a Manager of Programs. She will be involved in the coordination and delivery of the Newsfeed, Professional Development Micro-Grants program and all 13 annual Cancer and Careers webinars, in addition to assisting with the regional and national conferences. Nicole will also be providing direct support and referrals to the many patients, survivors and healthcare professionals who reach out to the organization.

Nicole received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, with a focus on women’s health. While in Madison, she was actively involved with Planned Parenthood Advocates of Wisconsin, pursuing work on legislative issues related to access to reproductive healthcare. Following graduation, she worked at Memorial Sloan-Kettering for four years in the chemotherapy unit and for a renal oncologist until attaining her Master of Social Work degree from Hunter College, in 2013. Nicole worked as a social worker in the child welfare arena, advocating for parents in family court prior, to joining Cancer and Careers.

Kelsey Fenton, Associate Manager of Programs

Phone: 646-929-8040


As Associate Manager of Programs, Kelsey manages the Newsfeed, Professional Development Micro-Grants program, the In-Service Training program for Healthcare Professionals; co-manages the Balancing Work & Cancer Webinars; and supports the execution of the national and regional conferences. 

Kelsey graduated of the University of Wisconsin-Madison with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics, focusing her studies on the healthcare and insurance markets. During her undergraduate career, she worked with second graders through Junior Achievement, fundraised for the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, and interned for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. 

Madeline Meislin, Program Coordinator

Phone: 646-929-8041

Maddy Meislin Headshot

Maddy Meislin is the Program Coordinator at Cancer and Careers. In her role, she coordinates the Resume Review Service, Collective Diary and Resource Database, and provides support for scholarship and accreditation processes. Prior to Cancer and Careers, Maddy worked in community educational programming at Hospital for Special Surgery, in New York City, and has prior internship experience working with cancer survivors at nonprofit organizations such as the American Cancer Society, Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and Mount Sinai Kravis Children’s Hospital.

Maddy graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree in Human Development and Family Studies from Pennsylvania State University and is in current pursuit of her Master’s of Public Administration at Baruch College.