Sara O'Donnell

2007

Sara O’Donnell grew up in rural central California, where she worked in the agricultural fields as a teenager and suffered the effects of exposure to pesticides. After losing five family members to cancer, surviving breast cancer herself and living on a shoestring budget with three children and no health insurance, she was determined to devote her life to helping others in similar situations. In 1995, she founded the Cancer Resource Center of Mendocino County (CRCMC) to provide a support network for cancer patients living in the rural county to help them navigate the daunting maze of decisions, treatment and care for cancer. Today, CRCMC helps cancer patients, their families and caregivers with a full range of services, including assistance with formulating care plans, advocacy for benefits, support groups, and transportation, so the time patients spend with their doctors can be focused on their treatment decisions. O’Donnell is the executive director, Cancer Resource Center of Mendocino County, Mendocino, California.