It was one work meeting that Stacy Quinn will never forget.
The Belleville, N.J., resident was in great health and had no reason to think she was at risk of anything other than maybe a common cold. But that all changed when Stacy experienced what she describes as the worst headache of her life. Then, during a meeting at work, she slurred her speech.
Two trips to urgent care and a visit to a neurologist finally provided an answer: at age 41, with no previous major medical issues, Stacy had suffered a Transient Ischemic Attack (TIA), or mini-stroke, caused by a spontaneous dissection of her carotid artery – the one that supplies blood from the heart to the brain.
For Stacy, now deputy director of U.S. Consumer Health Communications for Bayer, it was a devastating diagnosis for someone who thought she was young and healthy.
But instead of letting her condition define her, Stacy took action and became an advocate for promoting stroke awareness in women and young people throughout New Jersey. Stacy became a volunteer for the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association (AHA/ASA) to share her story and help raise money for research and community programs. Stacy has hosted fundraisers, spoken about stroke awareness on local radio programs, volunteered at Heart Walks, delivered keynote addresses at American Heart Association events, and spent many hours on various social media groups providing guidance educating people on stroke symptoms and recovery. Stacy's spirit of volunteerism and community service was recognized recently when she received the AHA/ASA's New Jersey Stroke Hero Award for her tireless efforts.
"We are honored to recognize Stacy with the New Jersey Stroke Hero Award," said Dr. Mario E. Pozo, member of the American Heart Association/American Stroke Association Northern NJ Board of Directors and the Director of the Pre-Hospital Medicine Program/EMS Coordinator for Jersey City Medical Center, Barnabas Health. "Not only is Stacy willing to volunteer at many events, but she has an incredible passion for teaching others the warning signs of stroke. She is living our mission every day."
As an AHA/ASA ambassador for the "Go Red For Women" campaign, Stacy uses her life-changing experience to potentially save others' lives, using humor and optimism along the way. She is grateful for the opportunities the AHA/ASA has provided her to make a difference in her community.
"I never thought I could be at risk for a stroke, and I didn't know stroke symptoms. And that could have killed me. I should have gotten help immediately after I slurred my speech in that meeting," Stacy said. "I want women everywhere to know the warning signs of stroke and to understand that stroke can happen to anyone."
Her Bayer colleagues are gratified with the impressive work Stacy is doing in the community raising awareness of stoke prevention and helping to save lives.
"Stacy is a role model for us all," said Raymond F. Kerins, Jr., Senior Vice President of Corporate Affairs for Bayer U.S. "She has channeled her efforts for the betterment of others by educating people about stroke symptoms and raising awareness that stroke can happen to anyone at anytime, including young people and women. We are proud of Stacy and thankful that she has helped so many others."
Bayer: Science For A Better Life
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the Life Science fields of health care and agriculture. Its products and services are designed to benefit people and improve their quality of life. At the same time, the Group aims to create value through innovation, growth and high earning power. Bayer is committed to the principles of sustainable development and to its social and ethical responsibilities as a corporate citizen. In fiscal 2016, the Group employed around 115,200 people and had sales of EUR 46.8 billion. Capital expenditures amounted to EUR 2.6 billion, R&D expenses to EUR 4.7 billion. These figures include those for the high-tech polymers business, which was floated on the stock market as an independent company named Covestro on October 6, 2015. For more information, go to www.bayer.us.