Ten-year ovarian cancer survivor lives life to the fullest — and educates others about the disease


By Kathy Day

Some people facing a cancer diagnosis go into a deep funk. Others, like local resident Naomi Whitacre, tackle it head on – and then some.

Today, 10 years after finding out that she had ovarian cancer and nearly three years after learning she carried the BRCA1 gene, which has been tied to hereditary breast and ovarian cancer, she said she does three things: She’s a human resources consultant, a volunteer for ovarian cancer and she lives “life joyously with friends.”

A self-described flower child who went to Woodstock and put herself through college as a go-go girl, today she does yoga, spins, hikes, takes classes at the Bar Method in Solana Beach and loves to entertain at her “Round Table” dinners where friends “talk about anything and everything in life.”

She uses her own experience — and boundless energy — to inform others about ovarian cancer. And she’s not just focused on assisting other survivors, but helps medical students, nurses and nurse practitioners understand what patients need. She also advocates for genetic testing and individualized treatments through the Clearity Foundation.

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