The Pink Affair, the largest annual fundraiser for TurningPoint Breast Cancer Rehabilitation in Sandy Springs, celebrates the successes of individuals who have conquered the disease, turning a negative into a positive.
“TurningPoint is a place where those associated with the organization have immense gratitude,” said B.J. Mackintosh, a breast cancer survivor and TurningPoint board member. “They’re able to celebrate the joy in overcoming breast cancer and helping those that are still going through it.
“This year, for the third consecutive year, I have 30 people (three tables of 10) that are coming to the Pink Affair. These are people that care about and support me and they come to the Pink Affair because they want to give back.”
Set for March 28 at 6 p.m., the 19th annual Pink Affair will be held at the InterContinental Hotel in Buckhead. It will be the first opportunity for attendees to meet Marilyn Pink, PhD, MBA, PT, TurningPoint’s new executive director, who started March 1 but has served as its interim director since December. Pink, who previously served as CEO of Educata.com, said the Pink Affair puts patients’ stories in the spotlight.
“I think our total focus on the patient and our gratitude,” she said. “ It’s the personal faith. … There is something special about it and everybody feels good. It’s a personal event.”
With a “black and white” theme, this year’s event will include beer and wine, a seated dinner, live and silent auctions, live music and dancing. Dean Crownover will return as the auctioneer, and former radio personality Dana Barrett will be the emcee for the fourth consecutive year.
Mackintosh is one of TurningPoint’s success stories. The east Cobb resident started taking physical therapy sessions there in 2015, not long after being diagnosed with non-advanced Stage 1 invasive breast cancer and having a double mastectomy (having both breasts removed).
Referred by her surgeon, she came to TurningPoint to regain her full range of motion. After getting to know Lauren Bober, its clinical manager, physical therapist and Pilates instructor, Mackintosh asked what she could do to help.
“I expressed how extremely grateful I was that my cancer wasn’t advanced,” she said. “My family history was bad when it came to cancer, so that’s why I decided to get a mastectomy. Instead of living in fear, I expressed to Lauren my interest in giving back. I asked “What does this organization need?”
Mackintosh, who is retired and worked in sales for Lucent Technologies for 15 years, had previously fundraised for Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta. She started as a member of the Pink Affair’s auction committee before joining its host committee and TurningPoint’s developmental committee. This year Mackintosh is on the nonprofit’s board. In the process she learned how important the gala is to the organization.
“I didn’t realize that TurningPoint doesn’t turn anyone away due to insufficient financial resources or inadequate insurance coverage, so the Pink Affair exists to help raise funding for those who can’t afford essential services like physical therapy or massage therapy otherwise,” Mackintosh said. “Due to my creative background in sales, my focus with the Pink Affair has been on creating unique (auction) experiences that are fun and out of ordinary.”
Pink said the event raised about $300,000 last year and the goal for 2020 is to bring in at least that amount. Since its inception, the Pink Affair has raised $1.4 million, according to TurningPoint’s website.
“Oh, my goodness. I don’t know if we could be around without it,” Pink said. “The Pink Affair touches every single patient we see. It allows us to offer free services for all of our patients. It allows us to offer reduced fee services such as exercise classes. For people with financial needs, we’re able to offer our services and not turn anyone away. ...
“It’s fun. The other thing we want to communicate is, yeah, it’s serious, but the impact we have is each of our patients is smiling. All of our patients are happy today. Just the happiness, the celebration is there.”
Tickets are $200 per person. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit www.thepinkaffair.org.