Marcie Klein studied English and communications at Tulane but didn’t find her calling until she moved to New York City in the early 1980s. She was working at a big PR agency just as the HIV/AIDS crisis hit. “I didn’t know there was such a thing as healthcare PR,” Klein says. “There was such a need for real, accurate education and information on these issues. I thought it would be the perfect way to combine my love of journalism and communication with the burgeoning healthcare-communications field.”
Klein has spent the rest of her career in healthcare, and now as EVP and chief communications officer at The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society in Rye Brook, she oversees the organization’s PR, internal communications, and crisis-and-issues management. As the senior communications lead for the executive leadership team, Klein provides direction and counsel to inform strategic and operating plans and was named one of PR News’ Top Women in PR in 2017.
In her five years at the LLS, she has generated nationwide awareness to increase revenue and support for cancer cures. But it’s not just work for her; it’s personal: Klein’s sister died three years ago, at age 54, of a rare form of cancer. “Even though it wasn’t a blood cancer, the advances we’re making in the blood cancers are now helping patients with other forms of cancer,” she says. “My sister inspires me every day to keep fighting the good fight.”