Shirley Ruedy


Shirley Ruedy

"In a time when we rail against the press for sensationalizing all the terrible things that happen…., we neglect to recognize those who have the foresight to realize how positive the power of the press can be." - Nancylee Ziese

Shirley Ruedy of Cedar Rapids is a nationally recognized cancer journalist and survivor. Twice diagnosed with breast cancer, Ruedy conceived a biweekly "Cancer Update" column that The Gazette began publishing in 1991. By intertwining her original writings, guest columns by cancer experts, and readers' questions, her column is devoted exclusively to cancer. It frequently addresses issues specific to women, including breast and uterine cancer, mammography, tamoxifen, and hormone replacement therapy. "Cancer Update," perhaps the only such column in the United States, is carried in the Patient Education Center at the Mayo Clinic Women's Cancer Program. Each October, in recognition of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Ruedy runs a column she co-wrote with a surgeon about the life journey of a breast cancer cell. She not only reaches her audience through her column, but also as a speaker. Serving as a role model and positive advocate for all those who have been diagnosed with cancer, Ruedy says that "for women to be in full and equal participation in our society, they must first be alive." She was born in Anamosa on January 14, 1936. Ruedy was inducted into the Iowa Women's Hall of Fame in 2002.