Daily Point of Light # 2830 Dec 9, 2004

Martha Reiersen is a beacon of inspiration and motivation to all who meet her. She is never too busy to assist someone in need. Ms. Reiersen’s selfless dedication to her community and beyond has won her countless friends and made a difference in her Alamogordo community. Diagnosed with stage four cancer in 1995, Ms. Reiersen has fought and won the battle. She has an amazing ability to look for the positive in a negative. Her enthusiasm for life bubbles over and makes others want to make this world a better place also.

Ms. Reiersen is a founding member of Cancer Awareness, Prevalence, Prevention and Early Detection (CAPPED). She served in an advisory capacity in the development and launching in this much-needed program. From her determination and contacts, a building to house CAPPED was also donated. The Otero County Contractors Association donated the complete remodeling of this historic 1905 building; the community also rallied behind this huge undertaking with financial support and in-kind services.

Because of Ms. Reiersen’s dedication to CAPPED, there have been 119 free mammograms provided for low-income women from the Com Alma Foundation. She also participates in weekly support groups in English and Spanish. The CAPPED organization continues to grow to meet the needs of the people with an excess of 60 volunteers. Her energy and direction keeps all involved on the move, focused and committed.

In addition to her service with CAPPED, Ms. Reiersen was a participant in the American Cancer Society’s first Relay For Life in Otero County, New Mexico. This event broke all records and set precedence for participation in the county. She has also served as an advocate to promote better health care and cancer research. She participates in rallies in the State Capitol, Earth Day functions, county fairs, area festivals, business presentations and any other opportunities to educate the community on cancer awareness.

In addition, Ms. Reiersen has been Past President of the Otero County Federated Republican Women (NFRW), Vice President of the same organization for five years and chair of the NFRW Mamie Eisenhower Library Project. She has also been a member of the Lincoln County New Mexico Federated Republican Women – Americanism, was active in Desert Basin Toastmasters for five years and she supports her local Knights of Columbus.

Ms. Reiersen has the ability to get to the core of an issue and follow through on a solution, whether that is a cancer attacking her body or educating a community about the deadly disease. She is a concerned community member that put her idea into action. Ms. Reiersen also has no qualms with calling her Congressmen to request help on behalf of constituents that need assistance. Her dedication and commitment has kept her alive and helped her to win her fight against cancer; it has also inspired and educated others in cancer prevention.