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Komen’s Leadership Changes Are Met With Skepticism


Leadership changes at the Susan G. Komen Foundation for the Cure six months after an online uproar over a decision to cut funds for breast cancer screenings at Planned Parenthood was greeted with skepticism on Thursday among breast cancer advocates and longtime former supporters.

Nancy G. Brinker, the founder, is stepping aside as chief executive to take on a new management role focusing on fund-raising, strategy and global growth, as my colleague Michael Schwirtz reports.

The president, Liz Thompson, and two board members also announced on Wednesday they were leaving Komen, the nation’s leading breast cancer advocacy organization, officials announced in a statement.

Ms. Brinker, who began the organization in 1982 after her sister died of breast cancer at 36, will serve as chairman of the board’s executive committee, a powerful role that prompted some advocates to question the organization’s commitment to new leadership.

“That makes me think this is a public relations stunt,” said Eve Ellis, a board member for the foundation’s New York chapter from 2004 to 2010. “She will be in a position to fire and hire and politicize women’s health care. I understand that she will no longer be chief executive officer. But she will be the decision maker on who the C.E.O. is. This is problematic.”

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