Lindsay Avner

Founder and Board Chair, Bright Pink

Lindsay Avner was no stranger to breast and ovarian cancer. She watched her mother fight both diseases when she was only 12, and lost both her grandmother and great-grandmother to breast cancer before she was born. So in June 2005, when she tested positive for a mutation on the BRCA1 gene, she knew she needed to be proactive with her healthcare plan.The test results indicated that she had a lifetime risk of up to 87 percent of developing breast cancer and 54 percent of developing ovarian cancer. Vowing not to let the disease strike heras it had three generations of women before her, she opted to have a bilateral prophylactic mastectomy. At the age of 23, Lindsay was the youngest patient in the US to bravely opt for a risk-reducing double mastectomy with reconstruction. During her experience, Lindsay was frustrated by the lack of resources for young women. So, armed with optimism and dedication, Lindsay founded Bright Pink in January 2007. The goal was to share her experience and resources with the 52 million young women across the US that, like her, who have the power to be proactive. Today, Bright Pink is a national non-profit on a mission to save women’s lives from breast and ovarian cancer by empowering them to live proactively at a young age. Prior to starting Bright Pink, Lindsay spent three years in brand management at Unilever, working on national personal care brands Degree, Axe and Suave. Today she uses the marketing skills she honed during her time at Unilever to establish cause-marketing partnerships with world-class brands that help further the organization’s mission and amplify its life-saving impact.Bright Pink’s growing list of national corporate partners include eBay, American Eagle Outfitters, Westfield Malls, and the WNBA. Among her growing list of honors, Lindsay was named among Crain’s Chicago Business’ “40 under 40” (2014), “A Woman to Watch” by the Chicago Sun Times(2008), an “Action Hero” by Women’s Health magazine (2008), a "Woman Doing Good" by Self Magazine (2011), a “Promise” leader by the YWCA (2011), a “Woman of Influence” by Today’s Chicago Woman magazine (2013), and she is the youngest recipient of the Anti-Defamation League’s “Rising Star” award (2009). Lindsay has become a thought leader and called upon national spokes person in her field. Her story and work has been profiled in such media outlets as the Chicago Tribune, MSNBC, Women's Health magazine, The Today Show and CNN. Through Bright Pink, Lindsay has sparked a national movement that empowers young women everywhere to putAwareness in Action™. Learn more at