Thursday 7 November 2013

Actress Suzanne Somers to tell all about her latest book at Women of Action brunch

When the eighth annual Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRF) and Pink Lady Fund Women of Action Brunch takes place on Sunday, November 17 (11:30 a.m.) at Congregation Shaar Hashomayim (425 Metcalfe) in Westmount, television star and cancer survivor Suzanne Somers will be front and center to  talk about her latest book, I’M TOO YOUNG FOR THIS.
  Suzanne  Somers
Dollard des Ormeaux’s Linda Mestel is among the individuals who attends the brunch every year. “I have been attending it since its inception,” she says. “The Women of Action is a remarkable event that touches, educates and inspires. It speaks to women intergenerationally and everyone walks away with a renewed commitment to cancer research, and a strong connection to one another. We feel proud to be part of something of this magnitude that somehow still feels intimate in its importance and impact. The speakers are relevant and enlightening and often the doctors from Israel who are actually doing the research have spoken to us so we really understand what it is we are all contributing to.”

Mestel  has been asked to organize a table of 10 women each year. “This year one of the women passed away from cancer and will not be at our table,” she laments. “ I was invited to accompany my very special friend who is doing extremely well today, on her journey with breast cancer. As she completed her last chemo treatment before the winter, her mom was diagnosed with cancer. She is the one who passed away in July after being ill for about eight months. Both ladies have been coming to the event. As well I lost my dad to melanoma in his early 70s. He went from healthy to palliative in 6 weeks. My brother in law died in his 50s from melanoma and my sister had a successful bout with breast cancer. And of course everywhere we look, and in my work we are constantly surrounded by the challenges and the journeys families face with this multi faceted disease. This is our reality and will serve to further inspire us to be part of this event and what it truly stands for.”

Somers has had a multifaceted career in Hollywood, spanning more than three decades as an actress, singer, comedienne, New York Times bestselling author, entrepreneur, and lecturer.  I will always remember her as Chrissie Snow from the 1980s hit sitcom Three’s Company. She is being brought to the brunch, presented by ICRF and the Pink Lady Fund. All event proceeds will benefit Breast Cancer Care, Research & Equipment.    

The brunch will honour three women:  Christiane Germain, Monette Malewski and Olga Munari  Assaly. Germain is the co-president and co-founder of Groupe Germain Hospitalité,  which currently operates hotels in Toronto, Montréal, Calgary, Québec City and Halifax. Thanks to her vision, which is shared by her co-president, Jean-Yves Germain, Le Germain Boutique-hotels and ALT Hotels, have experienced exceptional growth over the last 20 years. Groupe Germain establishments are among the most popular hotels in North America and the world according to prestigious leisure and tourism publications and magazines, such as Condé Nast Traveller, Tablet Hotels, Travel & Leisure Magazine, and Frommer’s and Fodor’s Travel Guides.  Groupe Germain is also part of the Platinum Club – an annual list of the 50 Best Managed Companies in Canada compiled by Deloitte.  

Christine Germain
Born into a family of restaurateurs and property owners in Québec City,   Germain became familiar with the realities of the world of business at an early age. She studied hotel management at Humber College in Toronto and gained experience working in establishments in San Francisco, Vancouver and Montréal. Armed with the knowledge gained from these experiences she has been able to, through enormous effort and tenacity, take the family business from restaurants to boutique-hotels, a new avenue that opened the doors of the Canadian market to her.

Germain takes special satisfaction in making significant contributions to community causes by supporting many activities which are essential to Canadian society’s progress.  She is currently playing an active role as board member of the Institute for Governance of Private and Public organizations, the Banff Centre and the Musée National des Beaux Arts du Québec.  Her many accomplishments and contributions have been highlighted on numerous occasions; Mme Germain is a Chevalière of the Ordre National du Québec , received an Honorary Doctor of Commerce from Ryerson University and an Honorary Doctor of Law from Concordia University, and was the recipient of the Canadian Entrepreneur Hotelier Award.

Monette Malewski
Olga Munari Assaly
 Malewski is a  well-recognized energetic successful businesswoman who turned a small business into a thriving venture. One of the top brokers in Canada, she is frequently invited to give keynote presentations. She just helped pioneer a wellness program to encourage employees to invest in their workforce to become healthy citizens of tomorrow. Malewski is not only an entrepreneur, but also an engaged business leader both on a professional and philanthropic level as well as an exemplary role model.

Munari Assaly is past chair of the Lower Canada College Parent Association, following a decade of outstanding volunteer service for the School. She is presently co-chair of the Leadership Development Council and was chair of the LCC Store from 2000 to 2007, contributing to record sums for the LCC Bursary Fund.  She was diagnosed with breast cancer  in April of 2006. Upon receiving the news from the doctor she embarked on a momentous journey. Where some people’s lives would have come to a halt, she kicked things into high gear. Her diagnosis of breast cancer began the still unfolding story of her inspiring lives as well as realizing many of her personal dreams. Within one week of her diagnosis she was asked to become the spokesperson for the Weekend to End Breast Cancer.  In just four short months she raised over $114,000  for breast cancer. This was only the beginning.

Driven by a heartfelt desire to help others, she values community and contribution she is compelled to use her experience to inspire and encourage people to support each other and to boldly pursue their dreams. Olga individually mentored breast cancer fighters to help them reach this goal.

She decided to share her story by creating a book. Her book, The Joy of Cancer: A Journey of Self-Discovery, was released in October of 2012. The memoir aims to compel readers to find opportunity in adversity. Having completed her nutrition and personal trainer certification, the next leg of her journey will befit women recovering from treatment by helping them get strong and healthy once again.

Following her dreams, she participated in many speaking engagements. Olga presented at the Tedx Talk in Vegas in January of 2012. Interviewed by the media on several occasions appearing both on television and the radio. She also gave speeches at the Kirkland Library in October of 2012, Lower Canada College on several occasions, at the CLSC in the West Island, Relay for Life in June 2013. At the moment she is regularly participating in Toastmaster, dancing lessons, mentoring cancer patients, volunteering, fundraising and personal training. Between all of this she manages to also sit on the School Board at Lower Canada College.

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