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A Woman's Journey National Chairs
Harriet Legum's personal crusade began more than twenty years ago when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. After successful treatment at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, her illness became a catalyst that would affect her life and change lives in the community. Using her newfound voice, she became a powerful advocate for breast cancer research and education. As the chair of the Johns Hopkins Oncology Breast Cancer Research Chair and Fellowship Campaign she raised 2.1 million, endowing the first chair and fellowship of its type in the country. Later Harriet chaired a fund raising event for the Johns Hopkins Avon Breast Center.
Harriet’s developing interest in women’s health issues helped spur the creation of "A Woman’s Journey". The annual multidisciplinary educational program features Johns Hopkins professors who address a variety of current women’s health topics. The program which began in 1995 is open to the public and attracts nearly 1,000 women each year.
Since 2004, Harriet served as a member of the Johns Hopkins Medicine Board of Advisors and on Kennedy Krieger Institute's Board of Trustees. She assisted in the creation of a revolutionary music therapy program for children at the Kennedy Krieger School. In 2000, Harriet chaired the Festival of Trees for Kennedy Krieger.
Harriet has served as a board member of the Susan G. Komen Foundation and was a founding member of the "Race for the Cure" in Baltimore.
Utilizing her childhood education degree, Harriet also worked to educate youth and spread awareness about breast cancer as a volunteer speaker for Hadassah’s "Check It Out" high school program for young women. She also has touched the lives of children at Sinai Hospital where she ran an educational program for the city and county first grade students to familiarize them with hospitals. Harriet also served as a chair of the Baltimore Crabtown Auction to benefit Baltimore City Schools.
Harriet has been honored in “Portraits of Hope,” a photographic exhibition sponsored by the American Cancer Society. The American Cancer Society also honored her during the award ceremony "With One Voice" which recognized her commitment to the fight against breast cancer. Baltimore Magazine has honored her for her strength, character, and commitment to helping others. The magazine named Harriet as one of "Baltimore’s Most Powerful Women" in 1997. The Rotary Club of Woodlawn-Westview honored her with the “Community Volunteer of the Year Award” in recognition of exceptional dedication and commitment to the community.
Harriet continues to serve as a resource for newly diagnosed breast cancer patients, offering support and personal insight into treating and surviving the disease. QVC honored Harriet in a video for FFANY’s (Fashion Footwear Association New York) event that raises funds for breast cancer research. In 2009, Harriet was named to the Maryland Women’s Hall of Fame.
Kelly Geer Ripken
Kelly has spent the past three decades participating in nationally recognized public service and philanthropy with a focus on health care and lifestyle, and she has served in leadership roles at various charities, schools and businesses. She has also appeared in countless public service announcements with Maryland’s governor and other dignitaries.
In January 2016, Kelly was named national co-chair of Johns Hopkins Medicine’s annual women’s health program, A Woman’s Journey. This award-winning event draws thousands of female consumers from Maryland, Washington, D.C., and Florida who come to learn about medical discoveries from pioneers in their respective fields.
Kelly’s interest in promoting health is longstanding. In partnership with The Johns Hopkins Hospital in 1997, she and endocrinologist Paul Ladenson, M.D., founded the Kelly G. Ripken Program for thyroid awareness and education. The program provides 2,500 free thyroid screenings each year.
In December 2015, Kelly was elected a member of the board of trustees of the National Theatre in Washington. In this role, she helps shape the future of American theater by creating innovative entertainment experiences, and she promotes the nation’s capital as a vibrant cultural destination. In 2017, Kelly was named co-chair of the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation’s Annual Great Ladies Luncheon and Fashion Show in Washington.
Her healthy and active lifestyle was featured in a series of “Living Healthy” segments on WBAL-TV in Baltimore.
Through her public service endeavors, Kelly was the keynote speaker at the Central Intelligence Agency for the kickoff of the capital campaign. She has also spoken in the nation’s capital on issues advocating for health insurance coverage for annual mandatory thyroid blood testing and she has appeared on numerous television and radio shows including Good Morning America and Prime Time Live with Chris Wallace. Kelly has been featured in print publications including Good Housekeeping, Cosmopolitan, Woman’s Day, People, Sports Illustrated and Baltimore magazine.
Over 30 years, Kelly has created and managed public and private events including a Baseball Hall of Fame celebration. She has also collaborated with the renowned Baltimore School for the Arts for more than 20 years, hosting thousands of underprivileged children for the school’s The Nutcracker ballet. She is a co-founder of the Baltimore Reads Ripken Learning Center, established in 1988 to promote adult literacy — the center has become a national model for adult learning and job placement.
Watch a video of Kelly talking about why she got involved with A Woman's Journey.