On May 10, members of the Taunia Oechslin Girls Night Out (TOGNO) Foundation presented a donation of $145,000 to the Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center (JMBCC) in support of patient care services. Each year, the Foundation holds a fundraising event that brings together breast cancer survivors, family, friends, and supporters. The 15th event was held on April 25 at the Johnstown Conference Center with more than 800 women in attendance.
This year, Jennifer Zindash spoke about her journey with breast cancer during the COVID-19 pandemic. She expressed how grateful she was for the care she received at the Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center.
“It’s hard to believe that the TOGNO committee has held its 15th event and has raised a staggering $1.3 million for the Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center. They work so hard each year to put together an incredible night to raise awareness for breast cancer and funds to support patient care. We are extremely grateful for the generosity of the committee, community members, and supporters year after year,” said CSSMCW Director of Women’s Services Erin Goins.
JMBCC’s partnership with TOGNO has provided financial assistance to patients for breast imaging examinations; breast biopsies and surgeries; genetic testing for hereditary breast and ovarian cancer syndromes; and education about the importance of breast cancer screenings. Contributions also support equipment and technology needed to screen, detect and diagnose breast cancer, ensuring access to the most up-to-date technology for community members.
According to Meghan Stahl-Skinner, TOGNO chairperson, “We are the largest dinner event in Johnstown with over 800 women in attendance. This year, we celebrated our 15th annual event and presented the Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center a check for $145,000 – an amount that enabled us to reach the $1.3 million mark! We are thrilled the community continues to support us and that we are able to donate to help women of this community get the breast care they need.”
TOGNO began in 2006 as a small “pay it forward” project by Taunia Oechslin, a breast cancer fighter who was diagnosed at 36 years old and succumbed to the disease on April 9, 2009 at the age of 39. She started the project because of the caring and personal attention she received at the Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. It was her goal that every woman is educated about breast cancer, understands the value of early detection, and receives proper treatment. Since Taunia’s passing, the TOGNO committee has been dedicated to paying it forward in her honor. To date, they have raised more than $1.3 million for the Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center to ensure “cutting edge” care in a state-of-the-art facility for every uninsured and underinsured woman in our community.
About Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center
The Joyce Murtha Breast Care Center (JMBCC) opened in February 2002 offering comprehensive and personalized breast care in one convenient location. The JMBCC is exists to prevent and treat diseases of the breast and other conditions that can impact the lives of the women served. The tools and techniques used include digital mammography, ultrasound, breast biopsies, breast MRI, bone densitometry, genetic counseling, research studies, and a female breast surgeon on-site.
About Chan Soon-Shiong Medical Center at Windber
Founded in 1906, Chan Soon-Shiong Medical Center at Windber (CSSMCW) is an independent, non-profit acute care hospital in northern Somerset County, bordering Cambria County. The 54-bed hospital shares a campus and collaborates with Chan Soon-Shiong Institute of Molecular Medicine at Windber (CSSIMMW), a private, non-profit biomedical research center. With more than 450 employees, CSSMCW is the fourth largest employer in Somerset County. CSSMCW’s mission is to provide excellence in personalized, quality health care services through innovation, research and education in response to community needs. For more information visit www.windbercare.org.