Remarks as Prepared for Delivery by First Lady Jill Biden at a Cancer Moonshot Event in Florida
West Palm Beach, Florida
Thank you, Liliana.
No one should have to fight so hard just to get the treatments they need. No one should have to lose so much to save their own life.
We’ve made incredible progress to get people care—but your work ensures women don’t have to face this alone. Thank you.
Nancy, you’ve changed lives and you’ve saved them. And I’m so grateful for your partnership and friendship. It’s wonderful to learn more about the Promise Fund of Florida program.
Deputy Secretary Palm, thank you for your leadership at HHS.
And Representative Frankel—and all the elected officials with us today—we’re so glad to have you here.
Certain words have the power to make time stop. Malignant. Aggressive. Terminal. Cancer.
Like a spell, they still the air around us—frozen in place, we feel the world we knew slipping away.
And when the hands of the clock begin to move once again, we are not the person we once were, but someone changed:
A mother imagining all of the things she might not be there to teach her daughters.
A husband wondering how he will juggle chemotherapy appointments with work and child care.
A son trying to be strong for the parents who could outlive him.
Cancer changes everyone it touches. And in some ways, it touches us all.
Like Nancy, I was drawn to this work because I lost someone to breast cancer almost thirty years ago—a dear friend named Winnie.
And in the decades since, I’ve met countless families who have faced this loss.
Before they say a word, I know exactly what they’ve been through—the ache of sitting bedside and watching someone you love seem to fade away, the shattering devastation of having your prayers go unanswered.
Or I see those who have walked through the fire and come out on the other side.
It’s subtle—the way they carry their shoulders, the lift of a chin—but it’s there: the hard-won strength of a survivor.
They don’t come from one state or area. This disease doesn’t care who you vote for.
It’s not a red or blue issue. It’s an American issue. It’s a global issue. And it will take all of us to end cancer as we know it.
We have to bring to the table the brightest minds and fiercest hearts to learn, and collaborate, and discover together.
That’s why Joe and I reignited the Cancer Moonshot—and why it’s a key pillar of his Unity Agenda.
We have an ambitious goal to reduce the death rate from cancer by at least half over the next 25 years.
We’re making sure that all Americans—no matter their background—have equal access to cancer diagnostics, therapeutics, clinical trials.
We’ve created a cancer cabinet to bring our entire government together around this cause.
And we’re investing in the newest treatments and therapies.
While those who are touched by cancer come from all walks of life, they often share a similar story.
Survivors tell me that they wish they had found their diagnosis sooner.
Families say how difficult it can be to understand treatment plans or advocate for their loved ones.
And those are the issues where I’m focusing my efforts: increasing early detection and screenings, and improving the patient, family, and caregiver experience.
Over the last year and a half, I’ve traveled across the country—and even the world—to learn about innovative programs and partnerships that are making progress in these areas. And there is so much hope to be found.
The Promise Fund is an incredible example of that hope.
We just came from FoundCare—a clinic up the road. With the Promise Fund’s help, they have made mammograms not only affordable and accessible, but easy.
And as Nancy said, so many other clinics in this area are finding new ways to serve women, thanks to the Promise Fund’s help.
You know, Nancy, you’ve been a pioneer in this field for decades.
But one of the things I admire most about you is how you listen to women and adapt your strategy.
You saw a need here—where women weren’t able to get care because they struggled to find child care or transportation.
And you found a way to meet that need. So thank you once again for your leadership.
And thank you to all of the patient navigators who do that critical work.
Because of all of you, patients and their families know that they don’t have to do this alone.
Yes, cancer has the power to change us. But it connects us as well. It forces us to reach out—for answers, for help, for healing.
It tears away the things that divide us—reminding us that we need to fight this disease, not each other.
It inspires us to come together and find the common ground on which our future can be built.
For Joe and me, this is the mission of our lives. And we are ready and proud to work beside you.
And now, I’d like to ask Nancy and our patient navigators to come join us on stage.