Eileen Z. Fuentes has been in healthcare administration for over 15 years. In 2008, at just 34 years old, she was diagnosed with triple negative breast cancer and underwent aggressive treatment, which led to many unpleasant complications including a life threatening blood clot in her heart. While she came across skilled and compassionate healthcare workers, she was awakened to how deficient the medical establishment’s treatment model is but realized that she could overcome these challenges by augmenting the traditional treatment with complementary approaches, diet and lifestyle modifications.
After successfully completing her treatment, she hit the ground running and took the appropriate action to turn her newfound passion into something more. She was awarded a scholarship by The Palette Fund, which allowed her to obtain her certification as an Integrative Cancer Care Educator at the Smith Center for Healing and the Arts in Washington, D.C. She attended The Institute for Integrative Nutrition and became a board certified Holistic Health Coach. She completed The Harold P. Freeman Patient Navigation Program via a scholarship from the Livestrong Foundation. She also took part in the Summer Intensive Cooking Course at The Natural Gourmet Institute for Food and Health and later the Food Therapy program, taught by Dr. Annemarie Colbin, the school’s founder and award-winning leader in the field of natural health. Eileen is a member of The Association for Drugless Practitioners, The Society of Integrative Oncology and is the wellness contributor for UptownCollective.com.
In 2010, Eileen founded and led the first ever Women’s Wellness Series for the Clinical Breast Cancer Program at Columbia University Medical Center in Washington Heights. She also started her own company. The SPEACH, which stands for The Self Promotion Empowerment Advocacy and Care Haven and is committed to support women dealing with health challenges as well as those looking to prevent it. As an organization, The SPEACH is passionate about making quality care accessible to all members of underserved communities by building partnerships with healthcare institutions, integrative practitioners and other organizations looking to bridge the gap with these populations. They offer specialized lectures, workshops and wellness programs. Their aim is to enhance hospital services, end disparities in care, and to educate the general public to take ownership of their health and wellbeing.
Fun Fact: Eileen documented her road to meeting Oprah, and explains how she knew it would happen. We knew she would too!