Cynthia Hayes been preparing her whole life to write The Big Ordeal. She learned the basics of interviewing, synthesizing information, finding the headlines, and telling a story as a journalist early in her career. After a brief interruption to earn an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, she spent 25 years as a management consultant. In that role, success depended on her ability to jump into new topics, ask sensitive questions, understand specialized information, and turn complex findings into a compelling narrative.
Shortly prior to her own diagnosis, Cynthia resigned from Montefiore Medical Center, where for three years she had served as vice president and chief marketing officer, focused on telling stories of health and recovery. While at Montefiore, she gained a deeper understanding of medicine and an opportunity to build relationships with cancer professionals who helped her write The Big Ordeal.
When Cynthia is not on the tennis court or writing, she mentors patients going through gynecologic cancer as part of a program called Woman to Woman at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York, and serves as a BOLD Buddy peer mentor to patients receiving care at the Montefiore Einstein Center for Cancer Care in the Bronx. Cynthia also serves on the board of Moving For Life, a dance exercise program to support cancer recovery, and Global Focus on Cancer, which provides education and support for patients in developing countries.
The author lives in New York City with her fabulous husband, Charlie Cummings, two amazing adult children, David and Katharine, and their adoring Shih Tzu, Horatio, who has sat at her feet through multiple drafts and countless rounds of edits.
You can read her cancer story here.