Thursday, December 15, 2011

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Francine's Friends Mobile Mammography Program Awarded Grant Dollars to Help Fund Mammograms

Indiana Breast Cancer Awareness Trust awarded a $13,500 grant for the Francine's Friends Mobile Mammography program. Funds will be used to help provide mammograms for women who, without this assistance, would not be able to afford this life-saving cancer screening. The funds are raised by the IBCA Trust through the sale of the Indiana Breast Cancer Awareness license plate. If you bought a plate, Francine's Friends, in partnership with Parkview Comprehensive Cancer Center and Breast Diagnostic Center, wants to thank you!

To learn more, click on the two links below:

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Punch Films Wins Emmy for Community Service Spot

Punch Films, based in Fort Wayne and Chicago, was awarded an Emmy on November 6th in Chicago for its public service announcement meant to discourage texting and driving. Punch had been nominated for two Emmys for two versions of the PSA, and in October, was on hand and part of the premiere of “Life with Francine's Friends,” a short film they recently completed to help tell the story of Francine's Friends and the importance of screening mammograms at our annual fall fundraiser.

“Awards are great, but that audience reaction — that's what we live for,” said Punch's Derek Devine. "There was a collective, 'wow,'...after they showed the spot,” referring to the Chicago audience seeing the PSAs during the presentation ceremony.  “A story is a story, whether it's 30 seconds or 30 minutes,” added Punch's John Cuneo.  Cuneo is especially pleased with the reaction to their recent short film, “Life With Francine's Friends.”  Read the article featured in the News Sentinel here.  To learn more about Punch or view the award-winning PSA, visit Congratulations to Derek, John and everyone at Punch!

Francine's Friends is Lucky to Have Friends Like Lucky Harley Davidson!

Lucky Harley-Davidson Motor Cycles held a one-day fundraiser on October 15th for their breast cancer awareness day, and with the help of employees from Hooters Restaurant, sold t-shirts and helped raise awareness. Francine's Friends was the "lucky" local charity of choice for the donations, and in addition, Lucky Harley-Davidson will be a new location site in 2012 for the mobile mammography coach.
Lucky Harley Davidson will be supporting other location organizations during the month of December - check out for more information - or stop in and see them and the hottest motorcycles at their Illinois Road location. We are lucky to have Lucky Harley-Davidson as our new friend!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

"The Faces of Breast Cancer" Masks Debut At Festival of the Masters, Walt Disney World

Chicago-land artist Laura Thompson of Savanah's Designs Glass Studio is unveiling of "The Faces of Breast Cancer" masks at the 36th Festival of the Masters at Downtown Disney, Walt Disney World in Orlando, FL, November 11-13th.

The two-mask glass set depicts both the darker side of the emotions that a woman might feel and face after she learns she has the disease, while also reflecting both the acceptance and positive emotions of strength, hope and courage that eventually emerge as she moves into the "I'm a survivor" mode.

The pieces were inspired by a recent personal experience Thompson had while attending the October "Lunch with Friends" for Francine's Friends Mobile Mammography in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

"The nonprofit organization who put on the event was Francine's Friends - an all-volunteer group of women who have not only upped the level of breast cancer awareness and the importance of early detection, but have also raised funds to purchase a mobile mammography coach to serve Fort Wayne and the surrounding area," said Thompson. "The coach comes to a variety of locations - and has provided screening mammograms for over 17,000 women since 2005, regardless of their ability to pay," she continued. What this means is women who are under-insured, un-insured, or simply want the convenience of taking care of their mammogram while the coach is in the parking lot of a public location or place of employment can take the "15 minutes to save their life" and not take time off work or worry about the cost of a screening mammogram.

Thompson was completely inspired by the program, the stories, and the 500+ women at the October event. She also toured the coach, and at the age of 47, had her first mammogram. "My creative juices just started to flow - and I thought - I have to do something to give back to this group and pay it forward at the same time," she explained.

A portion of the proceeds of the sale of this set will be donated to Francine's Friends to help pay for screening mammograms for women who can't afford one. If you're in Orlando this weekend, stop in booth #109 and see this beautiful two-piece mask set!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

We're "Wild" About Wildman Business Group

Wildman Business Group of Warsaw Indiana was founded in 1952. The company now operates three distinct divisions - Wildman Uniform & Linen, Wildman First Aid & Safety, and Wildman Corporate Apparel and has 170 employees. After an employee was diagnosed with breast cancer, president Josh Wildman decided to set aside dollars each year to help support breast cancer awareness.

Each year, the employees decide which organization receives the donation. This year, Wildman employees picked Francine's Friends Mobile Mammography because "of helping women who might not otherwise be able to receive a mammogram."  The company provided pink t-shirts that read "Find a cure; pink is NOT my color!" Loreen Lemon, HR, organized all employees to form a pink ribbon on the parking lot and invited Francine's Friends to Warsaw to receive a check for $1,000 and a quick photo opportunity. Thanks to our new friends at Wildman!

Friday, October 28, 2011

OmniSource Shows Breast Cancer Awareness Support in a Few BIG Ways

OmniSource and SDI have been long-time supporters of Francine's Friends and the support of breast cancer awareness. They were sponsor's of this year's fundraising event "Lunch with Francine's Friends" and participated in both our grassroots public capital campaign "50k in 50 Days!" and as a major funder of the new coach.

The OmniSource Marketing Group came up with a great idea for another way to show support for breast cancer awareness by painting one of their roll-off boxes pink! They also designed a ribbon magnet that included the OmniSource logo to put on the box. Breast cancer has affected some of the OmniSource employees as well as other important people in the lives of so many. Says the article in ScrapRap, the company newsletter "Our 'pink box' shows that OmniSource supports this important cause.”  The pink box is located in Fort Wayne and the ribbon magnet is also on some of their company trucks.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Fort Wayne Home Builders Association Presents Check to Francine's Friends

The Fort Wayne Home Builders Association presented a check to Francine's Friends Mobile Mammography at its monthly luncheon meeting on October 19th. The 2011 Parade of Homes, with homes located in the sub-division of Valencia at Rothman Road just east of Maplecrest Road, donated a portion of ALL ticket proceeds to Francine's Friends to help with the costs of screening mammograms. Read related post here.

Shown in the photo above from left to right: Sharon Simmons, Board President, Francine's Friends; Craig Yoder, Colonial Development and 2011 HBA President; and Teresa White, Volunteer and Community Resource Manager, Ronald McDonald House, who also received a portion of ticket proceeds. We thank our FRIENDS at the Fort Wayne Home Builders Association for their support!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Covington Plaza Goes Pink and Helps Support Francine's Friends!

 It was a bright, beautiful day at Covington Plaza on Saturday, October 22, 2011 - a perfect day to see pink and white balloons bouncing outside the various retailers and a very pretty matching pink, white, and red mobile mammography coach in the parking lot.

Francine's Friends mobile mammography coach was on hand from 9:00 am-1:00 pm providing screening mammograms for area women. Thank you to Senator Lugar's office and our local retailers and friends The Monogram Shoppe and More, Merle Norman Cosmetics, and Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio, who are donating 10% of their proceeds from Saturday to help provide future screening mammograms.

Be sure you continue to do YOUR future shopping with these wonderful friends of ours - for items like the latest purses, scarves and pillows, or that special accent piece for the home (Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio). Or what about a makeover for yourself? Check out all the latest and greatest color palettes and looks in make-up for fall and the holidays - including a special manicure for moi? (Merle Norman Cosmetics). Last stop? The perfect stop/shoppe for your holiday cards, personalized stationery or a Lynn Haney Santa. The Monogram Shoppe and More really gears up for the holidays, featuring Byers' Choice, Peggy Karr Glass, and Spartina Purses, along with baby presents, monogrammed jewelry and even men's gifts.  Support these local retailers who work so hard throughout the year to help support Francine's Friends!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

2011 "Lunch with Friends" Filled with "LIFE" and Francine's Friends!

The Allen County War Memorial Coliseum Expo 1 was filled with the chatter of friends — Francine's Friends — on Friday, October 14, 2011. The 7th annual event fundraiser to help raise funds for women in northeast Indiana to receive life-saving mammography services also included an exciting short film premiere, medical updates, a survivor reunion, two new survivor makeovers, and a wonderful time with friends!

Long-time support and friend Linda Jackson, Indiana News Center, welcomed everyone to the event and then introduced our honorary emcees for this year — Robyn Scott and Colleen Murray, of Chicago's Second City and real-life best friends. Robyn and Colleen graciously agreed to host this year's event and introduce the premiere of "Life with Francine's Friends."  This year's luncheon attendees were able to ride along with best friends “Jill” and “Karen” as they learned more about “life with Francine’s Friends” after Karen gives Jill a mammogram appointment on the coach for her birthday. Francine’s Friends and “friends” all help equip Karen with ammunition about early detection and mammography screening in an attempt to help convince Jill to "get on the coach."

The video was created locally by PUNCH FILMS, in association with Francine’s Friends, Inc. and Emley Design Group, and was produced by PUNCH's John Cuneo and Derek Devine.  PUNCH FILMS has just been nominated for not one, but TWO Emmys for its "don't txt and drive" PSA spots.

"Life with Francine's Friends" stars Scott and Murray, along with Francine’s Friends founders, partners, board members, funders, sponsors, table captains, community supporters, breast cancer survivors and a host of other “friends” and was filmed locally at Toscani's Pizzeria, Fort Wayne Urban League, Scotts Foods and TrendSetters Hair Design. Scott and Murray are also co-writers and star in their own pilot "Darcy and Tess" (see it here at and were busy the week leading up to our event auditioning for the "Rosie O'Donnell" show. We are excited to say "we knew them when...!" Click here to view photos of the event.

Click here to download your photo with Robyn and Colleen.

Dr. R. Prasad Mantravadi, MD, FACR, FACRO, of Radiation Oncology Associates, addressed the latest medical updates as part of the program. Radiation Oncology Associates was one of the event sponsors, along with Indiana Surgical Specialists, Vera Bradley, Emley Design Group, Fort Wayne Medical Oncology and Hemotology, Punch Films, Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio, Steel Dynamics, and OmniSource. PHP Foundation was the presenting sponsor of the event.

As co-hosts, Scott and Murray also brought a bit of their improv and Second City experience to the luncheon, engaging board members, a few table captains, and the crowd. "Dr. Know It All" proved that our board members weren't just another set of pretty faces as they fielded questions from the audience in a group answer. Long-time table captains Ann and Doris publicly revealed how they and other table captains act as "pillars" of our organization, as Robyn and Colleen "leaned" on them for support.

Robyn and Colleen were thanked at the end of this fun-filled luncheon and presented with stunning glass jewelry pendants, a first-time collaboration between Chicago artists Amy Odom (The Glass Cafe) and Laura Thompson (Savanah's Designs Glass Studio). These pieces were commissioned especially for Robyn and Colleen and this event. More information may be found locally at gallery8010.

Also announced — an update on the 2011 capital campaign to raise $350,000 for a replacement coach. Board President Sharon Simmons was thrilled to announce during her comments that the all-volunteer non-profit not only met its capital campaign goal, but "thanks to so many generous individuals, supporters, donors and funders, we have exceeded it!" Simmons asked the audience to be sure and check out the brand new coach with the "big red bow" in the parking lot, which was onsite providing screening mammograms. (Click here to see photos of the new coach).

Major funders of $25,000 or more include English Bonter Mitchell Foundation, PHP Foundation, Radiation Oncology Associates, Indiana Surgical Specialists, Steel Dynamics Foundation, and Vera Bradley. They will "ride around on the coach" with their names displayed on the exterior. Those donating $15,000 and above include Wilson Family Foundation, Journal Gazette Foundation, and Mary Cross Tippmann Foundation. Funders contributing $1,000 and above include Waterfield Foundation, Howard P. Arnold Foundation, and Dr. John Crawford. Equally exciting are the countless individuals, businesses, organizations who participated in the grassroots portion "$50k in 50 Days!" to complete the capital campaign. "Everyone who donated owns a piece of our new coach," said Simmons, "whether it was $1, $5, $100, or more!" Click here to read more about those involved in the "$50k in 50 Days!" campaign.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Francine's Friends on Indiana News Center

Francine's Friends Board President Sharon Simmons and board member Donna Emley recently caught up with one of our best "Friends" - anchor Linda Jackson. See and learn more on the weekend community affairs program airing on 10/15 at 11:09pm, and again on 10/16 at 6:09pm and 10/23 at 11:09pm. Thank you Linda!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

"Crawl for Breast Cancer" Donates to Francine's Friends

Francine's Friends loves it when our circle expands and that's exactly what happened recently when The Ultimate Bar Crawl, Inc. president Loren Bunnell called to let us know he was presenting us a donation! The first annual Downtown Fort Wayne Bar Crawl for Breast Cancer was held on Saturday, August 13th.  Although the weather was soggy, the spirits of the nearly 200 who attended were not.  Participating locations included Flashback on the Landing, Thirsty Camel, Columbia Street West, Champions Sports Bar & Restaurant, and JK O'Donnell's.

"My mother was recently diagnosed," explained Bunnell, who started the Ultimate Bar Crawl here in Fort Wayne in 2010. "Our goal was to do something fun, while supporting a local charity."

Participants checked in at the original downtown beer tent location on the Landing, received a t-shirt, an Ultimate Bar Crawl game card, and a map of participating bars. After dinner, "crawlers" visited each location, getting their cards punched at each stop — along with drink specials, no cover charges, and prizes and giveaways. "Most everyone came back to the tent at the end of the evening wet, but happy, and turned in their completed cards," said Annette Pearson, VP of Business Operations. Music by a DJ, more giveaways, and a drawing for six additional big-ticket prizes concluded the evening of fun — all for a good cause!

The result? Bunnell and Pearson presented Francine's Friends — their local charity of choice for this event — with a check for $1,425.00!

In addition to helping local charities and the armed forces, other "crawl" themes include birthdays, holidays, and other special occasions. Find out more by visiting

Thank you to Loren and Annette and all those who participated and donated!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

WLDE Carrie Wellman Chats with "Friends"

We love our "friends" around town who always take time to chat with us - to find out what's new, what's coming up, and to help us create more awareness of the importance of early detection in the fight against breast cancer.

One of our long-time friends (since the beginning!) is Carrie Wellman of Fun 101.7 WLDE Classic Hits. Carrie and her crew was the first ever to do a live remote from the coach (complete with the Weenie Wagon!); helping us to get the word out about the new Francine's Friends mobile mammography coach back in 2005.

Carrie recently chatted with Board President Sharon Simmons and board member Donna Emley - about our upcoming "Lunch with Friends" on October 14th, our capital campaign to purchase a new coach, and the ease, convenience and time-savings of having your mammogram on the coach. Tune in to hear them on Sunday, October 9, 2011 on "Fort Wayne Feedback" with Carrie at 101.7 WLDE. Thanks Carrie!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Francine's Friends Receives Kroger Community Donation

Francine's Friends was recently one of eleven local recipients honored when the new Kroger Marketplace opened at Coldwater and Dupont. The presentation was made on Wednesday, September 28th, at the invitation only, pre-opening open house.

"We are thrilled to be one of the recipients of the $38,000 total in monies donated," said Francine's Friends Board President Sharon Simmons, who was on hand to accept the award. Other board members in attendance included Debi Kennedy, Glynda Harris and Donna Emley. Camp Red Cedar, The Community Harvest Food Bank, and local area schools were also represented at the event. The $1,000 donation will go toward the actual costs of screening mammography. Kroger locations have been long-time sites for the Francine's Friends mobile mammography coach. This is the second time Francine's Friends has been a recipient.    

Kroger is in the midst of a $100 million expansion in northeast Indiana. At more than 126,000 square feet, the East Dupont Road grocery is Cincinnati-based Kroger Co.'s largest in Indiana. It features a cafĂ©, a Fred Meyers jewelry store and large infant and children's departments, and departments with furniture, linens, toys, office and school supplies. This is the first Kroger Marketplace store in Fort Wayne to open, so Kroger went all out with food samplings ranging from an expanded sushi section to scallops and steak hot off the grilling station in the meat department. 

In addition to groceries, the store will feature gluten-free all-natural foods, household appliances, a bistro and a build-your-own cupcake station. Employees from the Scott's that will close across the street will be joined by 130 new-hires for a total of 325 employees.

Francine's Friends is honored to again be a recipient and proud to have such a great community partner in Kroger.

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Tickets Still Available for Oct. 14th "Lunch with Friends!"

"Lunch with Friends" — October 14, 2011
11:00 Registration, 11:30 am-1:00 pm
Allen County Memorial Coliseum

This year’s event will premiere “Life with Francine’s Friends” a short video series that looks inside the world of Francine’s Friends.  Meet "Jill" and "Karen" - our newest friends - and travel with them through their journey with the coach, meeting longtime and newer friends of Francine's Friends at various sites in our community. Starring Colleen Murray and Robyn Scott of Chicago’s Second City.

Download PDF of flyer here by clicking here. 

For a sneak peek of some of the "behind-the-scenes" of the video shoot, check out our Facebook page - oh, and please like us while you're there!

Plus, at the luncheon, you'll hear the latest in medical updates by R. Prasad Mantravadi, MD, FACR, FACRO, and we'll showcase two Francine’s Friends survivor makeovers.

Presenting sponsor: PHP Foundation. Luncheon Sponsors: Radiation Oncology Associates, Indiana Surgical Associates, Vera Bradley, Emley Design Group, Punch Films, Fort Wayne Medical Oncology and Hematology, SDI, OmniSource, and Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio.

Individual tickets are $75 and still available. Tables of 10 and corporate tables are also available. Corporate table sponsors to date include: Briner Building Inc., Fort Wayne Radiology, Haines, Isenbarger & Skiba, Holley Management, Indiana Michigan Power, Parkview Comprehensive Cancer Center, PNC and Tower Bank.

Annual funds raised each year help cover the actual cost of screening mammograms for women regardless of their ability to pay.

For ticket information or information on being a table captain, contact Jeanne Garton, 625-3532 or  This is an event you and your friends won't want to miss!

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Francine's Friends Coach at Parade of Homes on Sept. 24th

This year, you have not one, not two, but three reasons to attend the Fort Wayne Home Builder's 2011 Parade of Homes at Valencia.

First, Fort Wayne's premier home show is always a great event featuring fine homes built by fine homebuilders - including Windsor Homes by Jeff Gilmore, Westport Homes, Bob Buescher Homes, Delagrange Homes, Lancia Homes and Slattery Builders.

Second, this year on the opening day, the Francine's Friends mobile mammography coach will be on site and mammograms may be scheduled between the hours of noon-4:00pm. You must have purchased a Parade of Homes ticket to have access to the coach.To schedule a mammogram, call 260-483-1847 or 1-800-727-8439, ext. 26540.

Third, a portion of ALL ticket proceeds will benefit Francine's Friends mobile mammography. We thank our FRIENDS at the Fort Wayne Home Builders Association for their support!

The sub-division of Valencia is located on Rothman Road just east of Maplecrest Road. Dates are Saturday, September 24, 2011 - Sunday, October 2, 2011. Daily Hours: Noon - 9:00 pm, Sundays: Noon - 6:00 pm.  For more information, visit or call (260)420-2020.

9/13/2011 update: Flip through the Parade of Homes program book for a sneak peek at the homes featured - and the Francine's Friends ad on page 38!  See it all here at

Drum roll please......nearly $2,500 by 9/2/2011!

Just Our "50k in 50 Days" campaign is in week two - with our first official total to report - $2,467.60 as of 9/2/2011!

We welcome and thank the following organizations and businesses who are participating and collecting donations to help us purchase a new coach: Canterbury Green Clubhouse, Cardinal Fitness, Curves, Parkview Physicians Group - Family Medicine, Erika's Spa & Wellness, and Pine Ridge Racquet Club.

They join McMahon Tire, Breast Diagnostic Center, Parkview Comprehensive Cancer Center, DeBrand Fine Chocolates, Star 88, Radiation Oncology Associates, Trendsetters Hair Design, Toscani Pizzeria, and 15 Covington Plaza participating retailers. WE LOVE OUR FRIENDS!

We also welcome SDI and thank them for hosting their workplace campaign - "Francine's Friends Tackles Breast Cancer" - on September 8th. Employees are asked to wear their favorite team jersey or color to celebrate the start of the season and also donate to Francine's Friends. Many thanks to all who will participate and to the SDI Foundation for its support as a major funder to help purchase the new coach.

Remember, no donation is too small - $1, $5, $10, $20, $50, $100 or more will all help us "fill up the coach" and reach our public goal of $50,000. You can donate online easily by clicking here.

If you missed our kick-off press conference, click here to view the video. Thank you to Doug Ferguson and NeverEnds Productions for their support and for providing this video and sharing it with us.

Lastly, help us grow our numbers on Facebook by interacting with us, "liking" us, and re-posting information about the coach and the "$50k in 50 Days!" campaign.  Help us spread the word!

Friday, August 26, 2011

"$50k in 50 Days!" Event at Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio

On Tuesday, August 23 from 6-8 pm at Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio in Covington Plaza, Cindy Friend and her "friends" hosted a customer appreciation night and also collecting donations for Francine's Friends "$50k in 50 Days!" campaign. Guests toured the coach with Francine's Friends board members Sharon Simmons and Judy Springer, saw a fun fall fashion show presented by Symmetry, heard live music on the plaza, sampled hors d'oeuvres by Catablu, and enjoyed olive oil tastings by Olive Twist

Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio is our good "Friend" who provides the room makeover for one lucky coach visitor each year, and everyone in attendance also shopped and toured her studio, and boutique featuring great jewelry, handbags, art for the home, and glassworks by a local artist. Be sure to thank participating retailers at Covington Plaza for their support of our "$50k in 50 Days!" campaign. Our heartfelt thanks to our friends at Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio for hosting this fun event!

Our "50k in 50 Days" campaign is in full swing this week - thanks to the following organizations and businesses who are already participating and collecting donations to help us purchase a new coach: McMahon Tire, Breast Diagnostic Center, Parkview Comprehensive Cancer Center, DeBrand Fine Chocolates, Star 88, Radiation Oncology Associates, Trendsetters Hair Design, Toscani Pizzeria, and Covington Plaza participating retailers. We LOVE our friends!

View more photos here on our Facebook page.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Francine's Friends Press Conference Announces "$50k in 50 Days!"

Francine’s Friends kicked off its grassroots capital campaign — “$50k in 50 Days!” and announced its plans to to purchase a new coach for the mobile mammography initiative. The press conference was held at Debrand Fine Chocolates, which is one of the many site locations the mobile mammography coach visits. All in attendance also received a FREE piece of chocolate from DeBrand - a sweet treat for all those present!

Francine’s Friends, an all-volunteer 501c3 nonprofit who founded the mobile mammography initiative and purchased the original coach, has committed to purchasing the new coach and has been quietly raising funds to do so. The original coach, built in 1989, was refurbished for Francine’s Friends, with digital state-of-the-art mammography added in 2006. Francine’s Friends, whose mission is to make early detection of breast cancer available to every woman in Fort Wayne and the surrounding counties, has provided screening mammography for over 16,000 women since its inception in 2005.

Francine’s Friends board president Sharon Simmons shared updates about the “quiet phase” of the campaign and funding status, liking the funding to date as being “true to the spirit of our name sake, Francine Schubert, who always met challenges with enthusiasm and determination!” Campaign chair and friend Vicki Johnson of Tower Bank explained details about the final grassroots phase of the campaign — and the goal of “$50k in 50 Days!” to help reach the overall campaign goal of $350,000 — adding that along with workplace fund drives and donation collection sites locations around the community, persons may mail checks or donate online at “You can donate $1, $5, $10 or any amount to help keep Francine’s Friends on the road and make life-saving screenings available to every woman, regardless of her ability to pay,” said Johnson. “Each and every donation adds up!” The “$50k in 50 Days!” campaign runs through October 1st.

Major funders of the campaign to date include English, Bonter Mitchell Foundation, PHP Foundation, Radiation Oncology Associates, Indiana Surgical Specialists, Steel Dynamics Foundation, Mary Cross Tippmann Foundation, Wilson Family Foundation, Journal Gazette Foundation, Waterfield Foundation, and Howard P. Arnold Foundation. View more photos of the press conference here.

View a video of the press conference by clicking here - thanks to Doug Ferguson of Neverends Productions ( for creating and providing this video link.

The mission of Francine’s Friends is to make early detection of breast cancer available to every woman in Fort Wayne and the surrounding counties. For more information, or to view the mobile mammography schedule, visit the website at

Dr. John Crawford (right) presents the first donation for $1,000 to Francine's Friends campaign chair Vicki Johnson (left) and Board President Sharon Simmons (center).

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Press Conference Set for Friday, August 19th at 10:00 a.m.

All media is invited to attend the Francine's Friends Mobile Mammography press conference on Friday, August 19th at 10:00 a.m. at Debrand Fine Chocolates, 10105 Auburn Park Drive, Fort Wayne, IN 46825.

Francine's Friends will be kicking off a grassroots capital campaign "$50k in 50 Days" and also sharing exciting news for plans to purchase a new coach for the mobile mammography initiative, including current supporters to date.

Francine’s Friends, an all-volunteer 501c3 nonprofit who founded the mobile mammography initiative and purchased the original coach, has committed to purchasing the new coach and has been quietly raising funds to do so. True to the spirit of their name sake, Francine Schubert, who always met challenges with enthusiasm and determination, campaign leaders and the board is excited to share updates about the "quiet phase" of the campaign and funding status.

Those invited and represented at the press conference include Francine Friends board members, community partner representatives from Parkview Health and Breast Diagnostics Center, English, Bonter Mitchell Foundation, PHP Foundation, Radiation Oncology Associates, Indiana Surgical Specialists, Steel Dynamics Foundation, Mary Cross Tippmann Foundation, Wilson Family Foundation, Journal Gazette Foundation, Waterfield Foundation, Howard P. Arnold Foundation and Dr. John Crawford.

Francine's Friends, whose mission is to make early detection of breast cancer available to every woman in Fort Wayne and the surrounding counties, has provided screening mammography for over 16,000 women since its inception in 2005. For more information, or to view the mobile mammography schedule, visit the website at

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Over 40 Attend pre-October Event Luncheon

A beautiful day in Fort Wayne and a perfect day for gathering table captains, "bosom buddies" and sponsors/supporters of Francine's Friends at the table captain and "friends" pre-luncheon held at Sycamore Hills Golf Club. Guests were welcomed by board president Sharon Simmons, who gave everyone a brief update on Francine's Friends in 2011 before introducing our guest speaker.
Dr. Shalini Chitneni, M.D., of Fort Wayne Medical Oncology and Hematology, offered a message of hope as she talked about early detection, breast cancer treatments and "cure" - her new favorite four-letter word. She took questions from the audience and also shared answers about FAQs from her own patients.

The short program closed with table captain co-chairs Jeanne Garton and Sharon Eisbart handing out packets for the table captains, encouraging them to save the date and invite their friends to our annual fundraiser on October 14th. Along with medical updates from R. Prasad Mantravadi, MD, FACR, FACRO, and our survivor makeovers, we'll also be premiering "Life with Francine's Friends" - a short video series that looks inside the world of Francine's Friends. Starring Colleen Murray and Robyn Scott of Chicago's Second City, it will provide an intimate portrait of this vital life-saving service in our community, highlighting the volunteers, supporters and individuals whose lives have been touched by mobile mammography.

Luncheon sponsors to date include presenting sponsor PHP Foundation, Radiation Oncology Associates, Emley Design Group, Punch Films, and Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studios. For sponsorship information, contact Ellen Tom (  For information on how to be a table captain or attend the luncheon, please contact Jeanne Garton ( or 625-3532). See more photos on our Facebook page and be sure to "like" us while you're there!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Table Captain Luncheon Set for June 28th

Calling all Table Captains, Bosom Buddies, and are invited to be our guest on Tuesday, June 28th, at Sycamore Hills Country Club as we share information and gratitude to you, our wonderful "Friends!"

Our guest speaker will be Shalini Chitneni, M.D., Fort Wayne Medical Oncology and Hematology. Dr. Chitneni is the practice’s primary physician at Parkview LaGrange Hospital.

Dr. Chitneni is recognized by the World Health Organization and the Medical Council of India. She’s also board-certified in internal medicine and certified by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates. She has also been very involved in volunteer work in India and in the United States, including her efforts on behalf of UNICEF.

We're excited to have Dr. Chitneni with us to speak to our group about news regarding breast cancer.

As table captains and event sponsors, you'll also receive a packet with your October luncheon invitations, so you'll have plenty of time to contact YOUR friends and fill your table(s) for our October event.

Please be sure to RSVP to Jeanne Garton by June 22nd by phone: 625-3532 or Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

2011 Cookin' Men a Huge Success at the Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne

Chefs Jason Fabini and Mike Packnett size up the rib eye.
At the 2011 Cookin' Men, your ticket allowed you (and about 1,000 other close "friends" - this year was a record crowd!) to enjoy extraordinary food and spirits prepared by 80 local "celebrity chefs."

EVERYTHING was delicious and the variety was evident. There definitely was something for everyone, and if you left hungry, it was your own fault! The locals who donned their chef hats for the evening spent hours preparing ahead and their efforts did not go unnoticed.

Some highlights - very tasty VRF Grilled Shrimp and IFR Roasted Chile and Avocado Dipping Sauce (chefs Jay Curry and Bob Pequinot) were stationed right beside the simply delicious Grilled Elk Wraps (chef Bob Addison). The Cowboy Rib Eye (chef Mike Packnett) looked like something out of the Flintstones due to its size and melted in your mouth. Frijoles Charros (chef Mark Simmons) had just the right amount of chorizo and spice; two steps to the right the Corned Beef and Cabbage (chef Ron Hostetler) was tradition at its best. Station mates and chefs Bob Walters (Bananas Foster Plus) and Ben Eisbart (Italian Wedding Soup) tantalized your taste buds and had guests returning for more. And super fresh Sushi was the specialty at chef Larry Weigand's table.

Chef Wayne Williams served yummy Jamaican Tilapia.
Let's not forget dessert! From the homemade Almond Ice Cream and gooey Chocolate Brownie (chef Richard Wolf) to the ever popular Pudding Pops (chef Mike Kelley), there were plenty of choices for your sweet tooth. Most creative serving idea? Chef Mike Nutter's Apple Caramel Crisp in the TinCaps plastic baseball cap!

Francine's Friends would like to thank everyone who helped make this enjoyable night possible - the sponsors, the celebrity chefs, the silent auction donors, the committee and the guests in attendance. Proceeds from the event will help support the Francine's Friends mobile mammography program, in partnership with the Breast Diagnostic Center and Parkview's Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Click here to view more photos from Cookin' Men at the Allen County War Memorial Coliseum in Fort Wayne, Indiana and while you're there, be sure become our friend on Facebook.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Francine's Friends Part of Women's Health Day

On Wednesday, March 30, St. Martin’s Healthcare offered a Women’s Health Day.  Uninsured women could schedule for their annual screening exams including mammograms and bone density screenings.  Since 2007, two days a year have been designated as Women’s Health Day.  Over 300 hundred women have benefited from the many volunteers and donors to make this event possible.  Screening mammograms are scheduled five times during the year. 

"Francine's Friends is proud to partner with such a great organization," said Debi Kennedy, Community Outreach Coordinator for Francine's Friends.  "The mobile mammography coach is typically there each quarter with a full schedule each time.  The staff at St. Martin's ensures that their patients are following our golden rule - the best protection is early detection.  We appreciate the opportunity to serve the women in DeKalb County."
Volunteers for this event include the Nurse Midwives from Auburn Birthing Center, Dr. Trina Chapman-Smith and Nurse Practitioners from IPFW School of Nursing as well as nursing and clerical volunteers.  Fort Wayne Radiology provided bone density screenings and Francine’s Friends offered screening mammograms.  Laboratory services are donated in part by South Bend Medical Foundation.  Financial support for this worthwhile day comes from Physicians Health Plan Foundation and United Way of DeKalb County’s Power of the Purse event.

Friday, February 18, 2011

And the Room Makeover Winner is.....

Susan Elrod is the winner of the this year's Room Makeover donated by Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio & Friends.  Susan had her mammogram on the coach at Canterbury Green – a long time partner of ours — thank you Canterbury Green!

Susan has used the coach in 2006, 2007, 2009 & 2010. During November and December, when anyone who was screened on the coach could register to win this room makeover, we had 392 women seen at 28 Allen County locations that could have entered the drawing. An update and photos of the results of this room makeover will be revealed at our annual "Lunch with Friends" on October 14, 2011 at the Memorial Coliseum. Mark your calendar now and plan to attend.

Congratulations Susan, and thank you Cindy Friend Lifestyle Studio! We can't wait to see this year's results.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Free Oil Change with Mammogram!

There are still openings available tomorrow (FRIDAY, January 21) at McMahon Tire - 4201 Coldwater Road on the Francine's Friends Mobile Mammography Coach.  A free oil change will be given to all women receiving a mammogram on the coach — tomorrow only! 

To schedule a mammogram, call 260-483-1847 or 1-800-727-8439, ext. 26540. Thank you to McMahon's for providing this!