About the Founder

Barbara B. Kavanagh
Founder/CEO, Arizona Myeloma Network

Barbara Kavanagh Headshot_2016Barbara Kavanagh, MSW and LCSW is the Founder and CEO of the Arizona Myeloma Network (AzMN) a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization established in 2004. Barbara is a published author and has served as faculty for
several universities including Boston University, Boston College Graduate School of Social Work, and Arizona State University. She holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Boston University and a BA from Duke
University. In addition to raising a family, Barbara volunteered and also started her first business, People to People Associates, Inc., a counseling, consulting and training company in Lexington, Mass. She ran her business for 15 years from 1976-1991.

Her work is recognized by the Office of the Governor of Arizona with a Proclamation designating a week in March as “Arizona Myeloma Awareness Week.” Great Nonprofits has identified AzMN as a “Top Rated Nonprofit” for the past several years. Barbara is a recipient of the prestigious Hon Kachina Outstanding
Volunteerism Award, the Phoenix Business Journal’s Healthcare Hero Award, the Arizona Rural Healthcare
Association Volunteer of the Year Award and the 2014 Arizona Business Magazine’s Healthcare Leadership
Award for Community Outreach.

In 1991, one month before marrying Jack and moving overseas to Europe, Jack was diagnosed with Multiple
Myeloma. This lifechanging event launched Barbara’s encore career and mission to educate patients and their
caregivers on the disease, and close the gap between what they know and what they should know.

In 2003, Barbara and Jack moved to Arizona for retirement and to be closer to the Mayo Clinic for his ongoing
treatments. In 2004, Barbara founded her 501(c)(3) nonprofit charity, the Arizona Myeloma Network (AzMN) to
promote collaboration, awareness, education and advocacy for improved treatment and quality of life, for
multiple myeloma patients, their families and ALL cancer caregivers with special consideration for the
underserved.

Shortly after in 2005, Barbara created the first Living with Myeloma Roundtable and Conference in Scottsdale,
Arizona which now attracts over 350 attendees annually. All AzMN programs are free and open to all.
Barbara’s charity depends on donations, grants, sponsorships and the support of her staff and volunteers to
provide these valuable programs to the community.

Recently, Barbara and her husband Jack, now a 25 year survivor, were recognized in Tom Brokaw’s book A
Lucky Life Interrupted: A Memoir of Hope.

Barbara is currently working on her next book for cancer caregivers to help others navigate the complex world
of cancer. Over the past seven years, she and her staff have developed and delivered several cancer
caregivers seminars throughout Arizona, and have additional Cancer Caregivers Education Programs, CCEP©
scheduled for 2016. The seminars provide caregivers of cancer patients and the patient’s team the practical
knowledge, skills and strategies necessary for effectively caring for their loved ones, as well as themselves.

Her books on volunteerism and patient advocacy include The New Volunteerism, A Community Connection;
The New Partnership: Human Services, Business and Industry; and Training Volunteers in the New
Millennium: An International Connection reflect a life dedicated to teaching and mentoring others to achieve
their goals, transform their own lives and those they ‘touch’.

 

View Barbara’s article in the March issue of Women of Distinction Magazine by clicking here.