Experts & speakers

MJ DeCoteau

Executive Director

Spend 10 minutes with Rethink Breast Cancer executive director MJ DeCoteau and it’s clear why she’s been named one of the 10 women Canadians would like to see run the country.

The first person in Canada to step up and out for young women concerned about and affected by breast cancer – blazing new and innovative trails in research, support and education – DeCoteau approaches breast cancer in every which way but sitting down.

At 22, after losing her mother to a four-year battle with breast cancer, DeCoteau was hard-pressed to find relevant information that wasn’t scary and overwhelming about her own risk factors.  Determined but frustrated, she quickly began to understand why so many smart, young people were in the dark about breast cancer. Like her, they simply weren’t being targeted. This realization was DeCoteau’s call to action. And by 2001 she had brought together a dream team of Canada’s most innovative, energetic and creative minds to found Rethink Breast Cancer putting young people concerned about and affected by the disease on the map, for the very first time.

With a mandate to always seek creative ways to engage young people with the cause and help young women going through it, DeCoteau helped take Rethink from ground zero to 100 in year one when the charity secured the exclusive Canadian rights to the world famous Fashion Targets Breast Cancer campaign. Fighting breast cancer with style and chutzpah was the new m.o., with Rethink leading the way. By 2004, DeCoteau was featured in Maclean’s Magazine’s Honour Roll as one of the top 10 Canadians making a difference.

Today, the spotlight shines even brighter on DeCoteau who is responsible for the overall direction, management, fundraising strategy and creative vision of an increasingly bigger and bolder Rethink Breast Cancer. Along with Alison Gordon—a founding board-member turned VP of Rethink’s Strategy and Marketing—and their coveted and growing team, she continues to lead the young woman’s breast cancer movement into new and uncharted directions.

MJ SPEAKS An eloquent and dynamic public speaker, MJ DeCoteau is available to speak and offer expert commentary on a vast range of topics related to breast cancer, young women, not-for-profit startup, small and growing business management, creative entrepreneurialism, fundraising in Canada, stakeholder management, the upside of a financial downturn, grassroots marketing and more.

Past and ongoing speaking engagements: Coming soon …

Twitter: @mjdecoteau

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