Cynthia Hayes


CYNTHIA HAYES is a former journalist, hospital executive, and cancer survivor who currently advocates for and mentors cancer patients through various initiatives.

She has been preparing her whole life to write The Big Ordeal. She learned the basics of interviewing, synthesizing information, finding the headlines, and telling a story as a journalist early in her career. After a brief interruption to earn an MBA from Harvard Business School, Hayes spent twenty-five years as a management consultant. In that role, success depended on her ability to jump into new topics, ask sensitive questions, understand specialized information, and turn complex findings into a compelling narrative.

Shortly prior to her own diagnosis, Hayes resigned from Montefiore Medical Center in New York, where for three years she had served as vice president and chief marketing officer, focused on telling stories of health and recovery. While at Montefiore, she gained a deeper understanding of medicine and had the opportunity to build relationships with cancer professionals and other experts who helped her write The Big Ordeal.

When Hayes is not on the tennis court or writing, she mentors patients going through gynecologic cancer as part of a program called Woman to Woman, and serves as a BOLD Buddy peer mentor to patients receiving care at the Montefiore Einstein Center for Cancer Care in the Bronx. Cynthia also serves on the board of Moving For Life, a dance exercise program to support cancer recovery, and Global Focus on Cancer, which provides education and support for patients in developing countries.

Connect with Cynthia Hayes on Twitter @TheBigOrdeal, Facebook @cancer.TheBigOrdeal, LinkedIn, and visit to learn more.


The Big Ordeal: Understanding and Managing the Psychological Turmoil of Cancer is available February 23, 2021 on Amazon and other retail outlets.


Displaying stories 1-2 of 2 in total

Tears and Thanks

by Cynthia Hayes

Five Ways to Find Comfort and Gratitude in the Face of Cancer

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