Publicly, Palm Beach socialite Nancy Brinker has been a good sport about the assault on the reputation of the breast cancer non-profit she created 30 years ago after her sister died of the disease.
Behind closed door, however, it’s been quite different, a Susan G. Komen for The Cure insider tells Gossip Extra.
“You can tell on her face that stress is taking its toll,” said the source, who asked to remain anonymous. “You can tell something’s different about her.
“Ms. Brinker has been particularly upset about the misconception that Komen is a political group. It’s not. All she gives a s… about is breast cancer. That’s it. She feels the true story hasn’t been told.”
A former U.S. ambassador to Hungary installed by ex-President George W. Bush, the usually unflappable Brinker yesterday announced she’d step down as Komen CEO to focus on fundraising and strategic planning.
Komen, which raises millions in Palm Beach County then finances research to cure breast cancer, has been under assault since January. That’s when Komen announced a plan to withdraw its grants to Planned Parenthood. While Komen’s money funded mammograms for poor women, Planned Parenthood also provides abortions.
Accused of making a conservative political statement, Komen eventually continued donating cash to Planned Parenthood. In a politically-charged election year climate, however, the damage was done.
In February, GossipExtra revealed exclusively that multi-millionaire Brinker charged nearly $500,000 a year for her services to Komen while thousands work for the organization for free.
The good news for Komen is that fundraising efforts in Palm Beach are ahead of last year’s, with a black-tie gala already planned for Jan. 12 at Mar-a-Lago.
Brinker is on vacation and wasn’t available to comment.