Thursday, October 4, 2007

Trish May - A Survivor With a Desire to End the Pain

Trish May got breast cancer one month after her mother died of ovarian cancer. That’s enough to knock the wind out of the strongest woman’s sails but she didn’t fall into self-pity or give up.

At the time, 1993, Trish was a forty-year-old executive at Microsoft. She set her mind to beat the cancer by taking control. She couldn’t do anything about the lumps in her breast, the surgeries and chemical therapies in her future but she could control her diet and exercise schedule. She could use her savvy marketing skills to contribute to minimizing the affects of cancer on other women in the future.

She hired a personal trainer and began a health regimen shortly after undergoing a lumpectomy. She’d have chemotherapy on Friday, be wasted over the weekend and drag herself out of bed on Tuesday to meet with the trainer. She says the positive encouragement she received during that time really kept her going. She eventually worked up to three miles of running and strength training three time a week.

In the summer of 1994, she ran in the annual Shore Run to benefit cancer research where she joined hundreds of breast cancer survivors in their trek along the shores of Seattle’s Lake Washington. The experience motivated her to do all she could to fight the disease for herself and others.

Five years later, she started a not-for-profit company named Athena Partners, after the Greek goddess Athena, the goddess of wisdom, courage and healing. She used skills honed during her years at Microsoft and Paul Newman’s “Newman’s Own” business model to launch Athena Bottled Water. She planned to use 100 percent of the net profits to fund research for cancers that affect women.

Currently, Athena waters are available on Alaska Airlines flights, in cafeteria’s operated by the Sysco Corporation, Dream Dinners, and Taco del Mar. Athena Partners has raised and awarded $130,000 for research.

May is just getting started and hopes that her company will have a long term impact similar to Newman’s Own which has donated over 2 million dollars in the past twenty years to various charitable organizations.

Athena Partners website is filled with survivor stories, inspirations and resources in the fight against cancer. Trish May is a clear inspiration to all women and a light in the darkness that is cancer. I wish her all the success in the world. If I see a bottle of Athena water with the distinctive pink ribbon on the label, you can bet I’ll choose it over any other brand.


Mike said...

Hello from New York! What a nice strong lady. I think you can change a lot of peoples lives if people just give. is a great site if anyone is interested in helping kids out. I funded an entire school project and got letters and photos back from all the kids in the class. It's a great program. They were so happy.

Keli said...

I always love to hear of happy endings! It's wonderful that she took control of her life. I'll keep my eye out for Athena bottled water.

Lisa McGlaun said...

Thanks so much for pointing out It's a great organization. Sounds like you had a very positive expericence with them.

Thanks for your input,

Lisa McGlaun said...


I love happy endings, too. I plan to look for Athena where ever I go. I think I've seen a few bottles but I didn't know about her then. I'll be sure to buy it now.


Stealth said...
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Stealth said...

I love people like this!

Tara said...
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La delirante said...

Thanks for sharing this wonderful and inspirational story,

Have a lovely weekend,

Aimeepalooza said...

Thanks for stopping by. I was reading your blog last night and really enjoyed it. But I had a busy day with football practice (my oldest child's not mine) and work so I didn't have time to comment. Kids, huh?! They certainly give us writing material.
Also, I really love this idea for a blog. I'm linking you on mine!

Lisa McGlaun said...


Me too. It gives me hope that if something like this ever happens to me I can make it through.


Lisa McGlaun said...


Hope your weekend is great too. Mine will be a quiet one for once.

Best Wishes,

Lisa McGlaun said...


Thanks for the comment. We are often run ragged with sports practices and games so I know how you feel. Come back any time and THANKS for the link. That is so kind of you.


Lynda Lehmann said...

Great post, Lisa, and very inspiring. I'll look for Athena products.

I know the darkness of breast cancer--I was diagnosed four years ago. People with this kind of courage inspire us all.

Lisa McGlaun said...


It's so good to know that you came through your experience with cancer. It's such a scary thing.

Have a great weekend,

Susanno said...

Touching and inspiring not just for woman.. Thx for sharing this post Lis.. you got my thumb up.

Btw what the different between ovarian and cervic cancer?

I know both of them named as "silent killer" :(

Lisa McGlaun said...


Cervical cancer is cancer of the cervix. Ovarian cancer is cancer of the ovaries..both are cancers of the female reproductive system.

Best Wishes,