Susan Stansbury

Diagnosis: Pancreatic Cancer

Born in Dubuque, Iowa, Susan Stansbury was raised in Michigan's Upper Peninsula where her little bedroom window overlooked Little Bay de Noc off of Lake Michigan.

"In our small town of Gladstone, we four children were raised by parents who were big readers, who had college degrees and talked about the world," she says. Siblings Jill and Mark live there where nearby sand beaches, rivers, and forests draw you back. Susan's son Thomas lives in Minneapolis with fiancée Elisa. "He is a curious, smart, loving person," says Susan with pride. Susan lives in Wisconsin and Florida with her fiancé, John Weiss.

Stansbury considers herself a life?long learner. With bachelor's degrees in English from UW- Oshkosh and business administration from Marian College, and a master of science in management, she also received a grant to study in New York City at the United Nations.

After working in Chicago for a couple of years out of college, Susan moved back to Wisconsin. "Little did I realize this would mean a career in industry," she says. She joined some companies where she was the first woman in marketing management. She often worked on medical disposable products such as transdermal patches and antibacterial wet wipes.

In 2002, Susan left the corporate world to work for herself helping small businesses with marketing needs from business plans, to research, photography and promotions. She gave speeches to industry groups in the United States and occasionally in Europe about topics like sustainability and packaging. With her clients' participation, she developed a manufacturers' expo, which she recently sold, at Green Bay's Lambeau Field Atrium. She writes an occasional article for industry magazines. Increasingly, however, her writing and photography are personal projects.

Susan was diagnosed in 2014 with pancreatic cancer.