Meet the Against the Tide Chairwomen

In just a few days, the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition (MBCC) holds its 23rd annual statewide Against the Tide fundraising event at DCR’s Hopkinton State Park on June 20, 2015. This event, which features swim, kayak, walk, run and aquathon components, would not be possible without the tremendous support MBCC receives from our generous sponsors and supporters, and the dedicated work of our volunteers. Leading the volunteer efforts are the Against the Tide Statewide Chairwomen.


From L to R: Amanda Beucler, Mary Alice O’Connor, Nancy Murphy, Cheryl Reeve, Lisa Fortuna, Michelle Porche

Nancy  Murphy

North Andover Resident, Nancy Murphy is no stranger to MBCC. Nancy has been fundraising and supporting MBCC for the past numerous years. She has been exhibiting the Let’s Talk Prevention; Reducing Toxic Exposures Tour in an effort to reduce toxic exposure and raise awareness about choosing safer alternatives to ultimately reduce environmentally-linked diseases like breast cancer. “I believe in educating the public about the importance of prevention,” says Nancy Murphy, whose cousin has stage IV breast cancer. Nancy has played an integral role in 2015 as the Head Chairwoman of the Statewide Against the Tide Chairwomen Committee, and holds monthly meetings via conference calls with the rest of the Statewide Committee Chairwomen in Massachusetts.

Amanda Beucler

Amanda Beucler is a junior at University of Massachusetts in Lowell. She has generously offered her time to promote the Against the Tide Event through social media. Amanda says, “I am truly honored to be welcomed into such a great organization that not only raises awareness for breast cancer, but also offers education and knowledge to its followers about the prevention of breast cancer.”

Mary Alice O’Connor

Hopkinton resident, Mary Alice O’Connor has dedicated herself to the state’s leading breast cancer organization as a result of the loss of her own mother to breast cancer. Mary Alice has made it clear what motivates her to work with MBCC: “I don’t want my own daughters to hear the same heartbreaking news I heard from my mother—that she had breast cancer.” Mary Alice O’Connor started out by participating in the competitive swim component of the Against the Tide event 10 years ago. For the past 2 years, she has also joined in on the Against the Tide 5K run with her daughters.

Mary Alice also says, “I appreciate the fact that all of the money raised by MBCC is geared towards preventing this terrible disease. Soon, with everybody’s help, we can put an end to breast cancer once and for all.” To join or to make a pledge to Mary Alice O’Connor’s team, please visit

Cheryl Reeve

Since 2013, Cheryl Reeve has served as an MBCC Statewide Committee Chairwoman. Cheryl believes that we can all take action to prevent breast cancer and has made it her goal to raise such awareness. “I believe that everybody can take the simple action of purchasing non-toxic consumer products. If people promote legislation that reduces chemical exposure, they can have an even wider impact towards the prevention of breast cancer,” says Cheryl Reeve.

This year, Cheryl is taking MBCC’s Let’s Talk Prevention: Reducing Toxic Exposures display on tour to local hospitals and health conventions. At her family-owned Sturbridge Farm, Reeve trains horses and teaches dressage, jumping, and vaulting. In past years, Cheryl’s husband, Fritz, and son, Daniel, have participated in the 5K run, kayak, and walk events. She has also been inviting her riding students and friends to support her Against the Tide team. ​​To join or make a pledge to Cheryl Reeve’s Against the Tide team, please visit ​​ 

Michelle Porche and Lisa Fortuna

Michelle Porche, a Melrose resident, is participating for her second year at Against the Tide event, and has a very personal reason for participating. This year marks her second year of successful treatment for breast cancer. “I am participating in honor of friends who have been diagnosed, and in gratitude for all the doctors, nurses, technicians, and support staff who provide excellent care, comfort and encouragement,” says Michelle Porche. “I am excited to help raise money for the Massachusetts Breast Cancer Coalition so they can continue their work on prevention.”

Both Michelle and her spouse, Lisa Fortuna, serve as Chairwomen. Michelle and Lisa are active runners, swimmers and bicyclists, and they have competed in many road races and triathlons together. Their 10-year-old son, Alex, also runs races with them regularly. Over this harsh winter, they have also been training for the Against the Tide swim component. Michelle and Lisa, along with Bernadette Farrell, the Health and Wellness Director of Melrose YMCA, are planning to swim, kayak, and run at the Hopkinton event representing the Melrose YMCA Triathlon Team. Please consider supporting their very worthy cause by joining or donating to their Against the Tide team at

“This impressive group of women led by Nancy Murphy, Head Chairwoman, has done an outstanding job this year reaching out to citizens throughout Massachusetts to join us at MBCC’s Against the Tide Events for breast cancer prevention. Their dedication and commitment should inspire all of us to join hands with them to change the legacy of breast cancer for the future generations, ” says MBCC’s Executive Director Cheryl Osimo.

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