Our History

Engaging in regular physical activity is the single most valuable thing a cancer survivor can do to rebuild both physical and emotional strength. –Dr. Julie Gralow

In 1995, a group of women cancer survivors in Seattle decided to train for a triathlon. They asked Dr. Julie Gralow, a local oncologist, to serve as their team physician. During the training process, Dr. Gralow was both inspired by the tenacity and strength of these women and amazed at the physical and psychological benefits that the women gained through training.

Dr. Gralow continued to meet women cancer survivors who wanted to exercise and improve their overall fitness, but needed additional support. To teach women cancer survivors how to use exercise for physical and emotional recovery, she partnered with Lisa Talbott, a fitness and therapeutic exercise specialist, to found Team Survivor Northwest (TSNW). Today, TSNW is a national organization with affiliates around the country and offers year-round fitness opportunities for all women cancer survivors.

Thousands of women cancer survivors have participated in TSNW fitness and health education programs. Team Survivor Northwest programs are open to all women with a past or present diagnosis of cancer. Members range in age from twenty to eighty. Participants are as varied as the activities they enjoy, but they are all bound by the common desire to take an active role in their physical and emotional well-being.