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My name is Robyn Fine, and this is my story…

I was diagnosed with stage 1 melanoma in 2009. On October 1, 2012, it came back with a vengeance and I was diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma.  Since my stage 4 diagnosis, I have had 5 brain metastases as well as metastases to the breast, back and lymph nodes. I have undergone immunotherapy, chemotherapy, surgeries, two craniotomies and gamma knife radiation. Little did I know it, but my fight had just begun. Not only for me, but for my only sibling Jason, who was diagnosed with stage 4 melanoma on April 23, 2014. During this time, I learned all that I could about melanoma, treatments and ways to battle this beast. But, on March 20, 2015, I lost Jason to melanoma.

My name is Robyn Fine, and this is my story. It’s why I have a passion to educate and advocate for melanoma awareness.

I began presenting Sun Safety and Melanoma Awareness presentations to middle school and high school students in their health classes. Next, I worked a Health Fair at the Cambridge Community College in Minnesota by setting up a Melanoma Awareness booth. This led to an opportunity to be the Keynote Speaker for the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society’s Annual Convention in Coon Rapids, MN. I couldn’t say no to any opportunity to teach. I became a Certified Melanoma Educator through the MRF and completed an MRF Phone Buddy and Facilitator Training, so I could run my own support group. In 2015 and 2017 I spoke on survivorship on a panel at the bi-annual Mayo Clinic Melanoma New Patient Symposium. I have participated and volunteered at the Stay Out of the Sun Run to raise funds for Mayo Melanoma Research in MN and the MRF’s Miles for Melanoma Twin Cities 5k. In 2016, I was featured in Cure Magazine’s A Rare Breed: Inherited Melanoma and I was featured in a Blue Lizard Sunscreen blog called Melanoma Survivor Spreads Awareness to Young People. And then in 2017, I flew out with my oncologist to San Francisco, California to meet with Verily Life Science to speak and be interviewed by researchers. This year in May, I spoke about advocacy at Mayo’s New Patient Symposium.  I’ve also worked at the Hennepin County, MN Health Fair for the past two years running a table for Melanoma Awareness. I am a trainer for Ramsey County, MN’s Parks and Rec, Public Works and Lifeguards. In the last two years I took part in an event at our MN State Capitol: Paint the Capitol Black.  I worked with MNDOT to create a training video on Sun Safety and Melanoma Awareness. This video will be used as a training piece for over 5,000 MNDOT employees.  In addition, I am an Imerman Angel Mentor. Most recently, I have been asked to speak at the American Traffic Safety Services Association in Fargo, ND in March of 2020. I will be educating road workers from all over Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota and other states about melanoma awareness and sun safety.

My passion to advocate does not stop at the local and state level. This year I took part in the MRF’s Advocacy Summit and Hill Day in Washington, DC. I plan on making this an annual event and can’t wait to advocate for funding in 2020 and continue to educate and promote melanoma awareness.