We remember Kristen Martinez on what would have been her 42nd birthday…
“Kristen was an undeniable force and truly believed in every person’s ability to make positive change in the world. For her that change was about shining a light on the realities of living with metastatic breast cancer and helping to ensure that all young women facing breast cancer had a place to call home at YSC. Her strength, grace and tenacity continue to inspire me every day in my work at YSC and she reminds me that we must always strive for better, because the women we serve deserve better. I am forever grateful for her friendship and for allowing me to be part of her journey.”
– Jenna Glazer, YSC Chief Development Officer
“Kristen was the first young woman I met who had metastatic breast cancer, and she changed my life. She taught me so much about how to be an advocate and showed me the importance of making your mark on the world, inspiring change wherever possible. It was a privilege to be even a small part of her journey. Kristen’s warrior spirit lives on in her friends who hold her memory and her message close to our hearts.”
– Melissa Scholl, YSC Senior Marketing Manager
“I was first introduced to Kristen in 2007 when I was working on In Living Pink. I had heard a lot about Kristen and was told she’d be a great addition to the ILP team. A few weeks later, she and I met for “a drink.” After a few hours chatting (and maybe more than “a drink”!), we left what we both referred to as “the best first date.”
What I remember most from that evening — my first interaction with what would soon become a great and close friend — was her effervescence. Even while discussing her diagnosis and treatment, Kristen was optimistic and had a sense of strength, determination, resiliency and desire to “make her mark” that was unmatched by anyone I had known.
The memories I have range from humorous to emotional and still leave me laughing… and crying. At her memorial service, the song “For Good” from “Wicked” played in the background. For all that I can and want to say about my beautiful and amazing friend, Kristen, I will end with a quote from that song that has always resonated: “I do believe I have been changed for the better… because I knew you, I have been changed for good.”
Missing you today and always, Kristen.”
– Alison Dichter, Event Consultant for In Living Pink: The Art of Survival
“At 12:00 a.m. on June 17, 2010, thunder and rain came down in NYC. I woke up and knew the skies were crying for a reason. I found out early that morning that my dear friend Kristen Martinez had passed away the day before.
So the rain was crying, and so was I.
Kristen, you are and will always be an incredible and beautiful friend. You touched so
many people’s lives and are an inspiration to me and everyone.”
– Stacy Igel, Creative Marketing and PR Chair for In Living Pink: The Art of Survival
“New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2009 will always remain one of the best memories of my life as it was spent with one of the greatest women I have ever known and an incredible friend, Kristen Martinez. That year, Kristen and I decided to celebrate on our home turf, NYC, and in an instant, “EMPIRE STATE OF MIND” was born! (Homage to one of our favorite singers, Alicia Keys.) Kristen was in the throes of chemotherapy, but that did not stop her from partying up a storm. She arrived to the party in a beautiful blue sequin dress and gorgeous heels and instantly was the belle of the ball who danced the night away (she loved to dance). Kristen’s passionate spirit permeated the entire party, and she made everyone simply feel in the moment.
When we started counting down to 2010, everyone in the room knew that we were acknowledging something far greater than the New Year; we were celebrating LIFE through the eyes of Kristen Martinez, and it was beautiful.
Kristen was always concerned about leaving her legacy in life and that she felt she never did enough… little did she know that by just being who she was, she left a part of her inspiring self in each one of us. Now it is our responsibility to continue her legacy in all the ways we can. As Kristen passionately advocated, let’s always remember to “MAKE YOUR MARK! INSPIRE CHANGE! AND LEAVE YOUR LEGACY!”
In the words of Maya Angelou: “How important it is for us to recognize and celebrate our heroes and she-roes!”
Happy Birthday to my SHE-ROE in stilettos, Kristen Martinez (April 4, 1974 – June 16, 2010)”
– Jean Won Mosler, Fine Arts Chair for In Living Pink: The Art of Survival
The Kristen Martinez Legacy Award was created to honor the legacy of a fierce advocate for the YSC mission and for the breast cancer cause at large. We select honorees who embody the same passion of its namesake.
On Friday, May 20th, we will present In Living Pink: The Art of Survival and this honor will go to Jamie Pleva-Nickerson.