MEET THE TEAM
Mary Carrillo | President |
Kristina Schlueter | Vice President |I felt a lump when I was 29 years old. I saw a doctor who explained it was most likely cystic fybroadenoma. I did nothing about it for 2 years then during a routine gyno visit my new doctor thought we better get more testing done. A month after my 31st birthday I had a lumpectomy and was diagnosed with Stage 2 breast cancer with no family history. After 2 more surgeries, 16 rounds of chemo and 34 rounds of radiation I am cancer free. I was very athletic all my life and even coached gymnastics through treatment but the meds and treatment have made my bones very weak and after two different broken bones I realized I needed a new outlet. I moved to Florida in 2018 and through a Young Survival Coalition meetup I was introduced to dragon boating. I loved it since the day I started no matter how hard it may be. I love to push myself and am excited about this new family I have found.
Denis Rheaume-Gomez | Director |
CA Tolchinsky | Director | Dr. CA Tolchinsky has spent the past 30 + years working as an educator, coach & administrator. Her motto is, “I'm no longer fighting. I'm winning!” Diagnosed in Dec 2010 with DCIS Invasive Stage 1, CA chose a bilateral mastectomy with immediate tram flap reconstruction, followed by six rounds of chemotherapy, which she endured with her teammate, Debra Zebersky. She lost her mom to bc when she was 22 and her sister who was diagnosed one month before her with LCIS, chose to undergo a preventative bilateral mastectomy. She says, “after practice, on three, we yell, ‘BFF’ and as I gaze upward, I ‘let go’ of this damn disease and enjoy the moment of bonding with my team.” CA and her son Cade wrote a book titled Dear Cancer: You Messed With the Wrong Mom, which answers questions children have. It is for sale on Amazon and proceeds go to the chemo center where CA received her treatment. You can read more about her fight at:
Irma Rey |
Cibe Ricarte |
Peg Richardson | A very healthy person, I rarely get sick, and maintain a healthy lifestyle. In August 2014, less than a year after my husband passed away from cancer, I was diagnosed with invasive lobular carcinoma, Stage 1, after a routine mammogram. My first reaction was that I could not deal with this, having spent the previous year as the primary caretaker during my husband’s illness while holding down a full-time job. Thanks to my cancer care team at Cleveland Clinic, they educated me about breast cancer and treatments available. After two lumpectomies and six weeks of radiation, I moved on! I consider myself one of the lucky ones. Early diagnosis, Stage 1 - a reminder that routine mammograms are valuable. Four months after my treatment ended, I placed first in my age group in the Cleveland Clinic 5K. However, I was looking to do something more… and I found dragon boating. It has changed my life – the thrill of being on the water with a synchronized team of women, the dedication, laughter, bonding, and even a trip to Florence, Italy, to compete with thousands of breast cancer survivors from around the world. I’m thankful every day that I was bitten by the dragon!
Tamara Roth |
JoAnn Zangle |
Debra Zebersky | Debra Zebersky, a graduate of Columbia University and University of Miami, has spent her life as a social worker and elementary school teacher, always focusing on others, especially her three sons and husband, Eddie, a prominent local attorney. In January, 2011, she was diagnosed with DCIS Invasive Stage 2 and chose to undergo a bilateral mastectomy, followed by six rounds of chemo, along with her teammate, CA. Side by side, they laughed (as much as they could) through treatment, and continue to enjoy life everyday, especially when on the water with BFF!