Anne Marie Olson: Rider Profile
Family ties run deeper than we realize. In times of trial, tribulation, and hardship, our ties with those we identify as family can lend us the strength and power to overcome any obstacle. For rider AnnMarie Olson, family is strength. With two sisters who’ve beaten breast cancer, AnnMarie knows firsthand how families can empower one another to conquer anything that threatens to separate them.
Who or what drives your ride?
“My sister Patti was diagnosed with Breast Cancer eleven years ago. Following her diagnosis, all four of the Olson sisters decided to get tested for the BRCA2 gene. Two of my sisters and one of my nieces tested positive for the BRCA2 gene. It was frightening to watch two of the strongest members of my family succumb to this disease. Fortunately, both sisters are doing well, and Patti was able to use her own recovery from cancer to help others get support for their journey in designing Rallyhood. Ultimately, I ride for my family and in support of all women who have breast cancer.”
What about the Mamma Jamma Ride makes riding a valuable experience?
“What makes the Mamma Jamma Ride so special is that all of the money raised is used right here in our own community. It’s used for OUR sisters, OUR friends, OUR family, for OUR people! The seven organizations - Seton Ascension, the Breast Cancer Resource Center, Community Action, Susan G. Komen, Team Survivor, the Sustainable Food Center, and Wonders and Worries - support our local friends and families.”
Do you have any advice on fundraising or participating in the ride for those who are first time riders?
“My suggestion is to Email, Facebook, or text everyone you know. I have gotten several anonymous donations, as well as generous donations from family and friends. We all have a story that includes friends or family that have Breast Cancer. It tugs at you.”
Tell us a little bit about yourself.
“I have lived in Austin since 1971. When my family moved from Chicago when I was 9, I was afraid there were not going to be any bicycles, and that we would have to ride horses instead!
I am a Dentist, and have been in private practice in NW Austin for almost 31 years! In addition to cycling, I love to travel, do Yoga, Pilates, and Zumba, and I'm a certified Master Gardener for Travis County.
I am also a singer and a cantor with St. Theresa Catholic Church in Austin, and I sing with the St. Edward's University Masterworks Choir. I have no children, but enjoy my 6 nieces and nephews!”
Tell us a little bit about your experiences riding and fundraising as a team member.
“This year I formed a team with good friends from the Davis Mountains Fitness and Training Camp including Amy Holland - a 21-year survivor. Fundraising with The "A" Team has been easy - Amy is a super star VIP fundraiser!”
(The "A" Team raised over $6400 for this year's ride!)
By Alex Keefe, Communication Intern