About the project

The #ThisIsMBC Perseverance Project showcases a diverse group of 12 people living with metastatic breast cancer (MBC) and highlights the daily joy, difficulty, and reality of living with MBC. Each month, Perseverance will feature a new project participant with her personal story told through unique color and black-and-white photos as well as inspiring videos.

ThisIsMBC Perseverance Project



Oauja Walker

42 years old

Originally from New York, but resides in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Oauja is resilient and down-to-earth. She’s a full-time caregiver for her daughter—who has a closed brain injury from an accident. With metastatic breast cancer affecting her chest wall and lung, and now also her liver, Oauja decided to leave her job due to her concerns about health risks during the COVID-19 pandemic. Coping with financial hardships, including the loss of her home, she is determined to continue to care for her daughter and face the challenges ahead. Oauja’s experiences with the health care system have not always been ideal. At times, she felt she wasn’t listened to, her concerns were dismissed, or that she received less-than-optimal care because of her insurance situation. By sharing her story, she hopes to encourage and empower people living with metastatic breast cancer to ask questions and speak up about their needs and concerns. “For someone that’s newly diagnosed, it’s kind of tough… You’ve got to remove all the negativity out of your life and remain positive regardless.”

In loving memory of Oauja — May her story live on forever. Another precious life taken by metastatic breast cancer.

Learn more about Oauja here.


Janice Cowden

63 years old

Ohio then Florida

Janice is a thoughtful, energetic retired pediatric nurse living with her caring husband. She loves nonfiction, swimming, traveling, enjoying the great outdoors, and seeing her two children and three grandchildren. After being diagnosed with the disease, Janice’s already active passion for science and the healthcare space grew further—and motivated her to become an MBC educator and advocate, to be a source of support. "Perseverance, to me, simply means getting up each day, moving forward, and educating others... making each day count."

Learn more about Janice here.


Monique Green

Passed away in August, 2021 at age 51

Originally from Bronx, NY

Monique was a creative, upbeat metastatic breast cancer (MBC) advocate as well as a loving wife and caring mother to sons, with an inspiring motto of "live life limitless." She was passionate about animals but it was her love of social media that helped her to help others like herself, as she was enabled to reach many people fighting the disease. Monique felt she could do so much good in an area she believed was lacking support and recognition. She stressed the importance of having a good relationship with your doctor, sharing ways to overcome depression from the diagnosis, and feeling genuinely cared for. "A lot of people are blind to what MBC is. So we just need to speak up more about it and be heard... if we stay silent, things will never change."

In loving memory of Monique

Learn more about Monique here.


Myra Camino

42 years old


Myra is a loving wife and a mother to two young sons and is passionate about yoga, the beach, arts and crafts, and volunteering in her community. Feeling it's important to mentor others who need support, she worked for Big Brothers Big Sisters until the pandemic. When she was diagnosed with MBC, Myra began a blog in order to share her experiences as well as raise awareness. "Honestly, what helped me get through this was finding my tribe."

Learn more about Myra here.


Latonya Wilson

Passed away in August, 2021 at age 44

Originally from Columbia, South Carolina

Latonya was a generous 44-year-old US Army Veteran who loved to work out, cook, help her community, and spend precious time with her large, close-knit family. Since her diagnosis, Latonya had started her own breast cancer foundation with the aim of helping people, as she knew the value of surrounding oneself with others who truly understand each other's situations. She struggled in the beginning, especially when it came to getting used to body changes, but later used her strength and pride to educate. "You can still have fun with MBC. You can still find love with MBC. You don't have to settle just because you have MBC."

In loving memory of Latonya

Learn more about Latonya here.


Shonte Drakeford

36 years old

Washington, DC

Shonte is an outgoing, bubbly nurse practitioner, childbirth educator, and military wife. She enjoys spending time with her friends, dogs, chickens, ducks, and long-time husband with whom she shares a beautiful farm. Shonte also loves traveling, snowboarding, fishing, camping, and gaming. She has been an active member of the MBC community ever since she was diagnosed in her mid-20s. "You have to just live the best that you can with no regrets."

Learn more about Shonte here.


Liz Satterfield

48 years old

Seattle, Washington

Liz is an active, fun-loving wife and mom who enjoys an array of outdoor adventure activities ranging from hiking to scuba diving. Her passion for the outdoors and the support of her family have helped her to handle the emotional roller coaster of living with MBC. "Emotionally, you’ve got to be prepared for the highs and lows... I can look for things that bring me joy... bring me energy and make me feel good."

Learn more about Liz here.


Ashley Fernandez

33 years old

Bellbrook, Ohio

Ashley is a vivacious and upbeat mother and military wife who loves to paint, roller skate, and volunteer in her community. She believes it's important for women of color with MBC to share their story: "You never know when your story's going to help somebody else."

Learn more about Ashley here.


Jan Skjolsvik

68 years old


Jan is a friendly, engaging 68-year-old retired teacher who loves gardening, trying new recipes, and having her grandkids come to visit. Jan has had metastatic breast cancer (MBC) for several years, and in that time she has grown closer to her daughter, her friends, and her faith. Jan says she wants to "try to be a giver."

Learn more about Jan here.


Jess Beard

29 years old


Jess is a spirited nature-lover who lives on a large family farm with her husband and dogs. As a young woman with metastatic breast cancer (MBC), Jess saw the road ahead abruptly change from one with children and a career to one with lifelong challenges. She has gracefully adapted to her new normal, and credits her type A, competitive personality with helping her get so far in her MBC journey, which includes advocating for MBC research funding.

Learn more about Jess here.


Chawnte Randall

Passed away in November, 2020 at age 43

Originally from Columbia, Maryland

Chawnte, who was a mother, US Army veteran, and MBC advocate, recently passed away at age 43. She was a self-proclaimed nerd who loved sci-fi and romance novels, live music, and going to the gym. In an interview before she died, she said, "I don't want to walk around with doom and gloom with the expectation of my passing. I want to live life to its fullest every day, show no fear, and never give up."

In loving memory of Chawnte

Learn more about Chawnte here.


Carletha “Spirit” Cephas

51 years old

Los Angeles, California

Carletha, who loved butterflies, Hello Kitty, and spoiling her nieces and nephews, described herself as “assertive, very outspoken, and very courageous.” Carletha was adamant about advocating for herself during her treatment, and encouraged other women to do the same: "…it's very, very important for other women to understand that you need to create a dialogue, write notes down, email yourself notes, write information down the day before you visit your doctor with questions.”

In loving memory of Carletha

Learn more about Carletha here.