July 17, 2019 4:00 am Published by

Episode 15:

Amy Ronneberg is the Chief Financial Officer and Chief of Staff of the National Marrow Donor Program at Be The Match, as well as the President of Be The Match BioTherapies. She has twenty years of experience in financial and operational leadership. Amy spent twelve years at Capella Education Company, where she served as Chief Accounting Officer and Vice President of Finance, and where she led enterprise-wide operations and customer service. She also worked for global professional services firm Ernst & Young for several years as an audit manager. Amy has served on several boards and is currently on the board of Magenta Therapeutics, Tmunity Therapeutics, the Women’s HealthCare Leadership Trust, and the Finance Committee for Allina Healthcare. Amy talks with us today about her fight with cancer personally and professionally and truly embodies the mentality that female leaders strive for.

What You Will Learn:

  • Amy explains how she balances her career, membership on several boards, frequent travel and role as a mother. She describes the importance of being present for every moment, and she talks about bringing her kids with her as much as possible.
  • Amy talks about how being diagnosed with cancer was a wake-up call to remind her of the importance of not pushing off the worthwhile things that day to day life has to offer.
  • Amy shares how she received the information that she had cancer at a young age, and discusses the emotions she felt during her battle with cancer. She talks about her long journey back to health and the ongoing fear of her cancer returning.
  • Amy talks about emotional vulnerability and authenticity. She discusses how her work at Be The Match sometimes hits her hard because of her experience with cancer, and she shares the story of crying in front of a thousand people.
  • Amy shares how she often feels unf<kwithable since her diagnosis, and she shares how much of what motivated her before her cancer diagnosis was based in fear; fear of disappointing others and of others’ opinions of her.
  • Amy describes the lifesaving work her organization does to help cure blood cancers, and she shares how anyone who might be interested in becoming a donor can reach out to Be The Match to get more information.
  • Amy shares her experiences working as one of the only female leaders in a male-dominated industry such as finance. She describes why she joins boards based on her skills and experiences rather than being a “box to be checked”.
  • Amy talks about her role as a mother and being 100% there for her daughters despite her incredibly hectic schedule. She shares the importance of ensuring that quality time with her daughters is truly high quality.


A Life-Changing Diagnosis

You’re here because you know that learning never ends. You’re the kind of entrepreneur, business owner or leader who realizes that the pursuit of a perfect life, while a worthy goal, is also an impossible one. You know there is no end to the race, and you’re ready to power through anyway. You know that the climb to the top is endless, and you’re going to make the climb anyway. In short, you’re ready to become an unf<kwithable leader. Female Leaders | Fighting Cancer Personally and Professionally, with Amy Ronneberg

Amy Ronneberg is the Chief Financial Officer and Chief of Staff of the National Marrow Donor Program at Be The Match, as well as the President of Be The Match BioTherapies. She is one of the only female leaders who works in the primarily male industry of finance, and she serves on numerous boards. In addition to all of her professional duties, she’s also a proud mom. On top of all of that, Amy is a cancer survivor who deals daily with the emotional struggles of working with others who are dealing with the devastating impacts of various blood cancers and diseases like sickle cell.

During our conversation, Amy discusses the incredible and lifesaving work her organization does, and she shares her own intimate struggles with cancer and the lasting changes her diagnosis has made to her life. She shares how she finds time to integrate all the aspects of her hectic life while still making time for her daughters. Amy Ronneberg has a joy, passion and dedication to her life that will inspire you.

Living with a Purpose

When Amy was younger and her daughters were small, she was diagnosed with cancer. That diagnosis was a powerful and crushing wake-up call to show Amy that she had not been living the life she wanted; she had been consumed by her work and hadn’t made time for joy. Amy battled and eventually beat her cancer, and she began living a more purposeful life with the goal of doing many of the things she had always wanted to do but had never made the time for.

One of the most profound realizations Amy made during her battle with cancer was that, prior to her diagnosis, many of her decisions in life and in her career were guided by fear. Amy feared disappointing others and saying no, and she feared what others thought of her. After her cancer forced her to reevaluate her priorities, she resolved to stop living in fear and start living in the moment. Amy explained that she works to be present for every moment and every situation, whether she’s at work or spending quality time with her daughters. Amy provides a great example of how strong, female leaders can overcome many adversities in their lives.

Helping Others Through Their Battles With Cancer

Working for the National Marrow Donor Program at Be The Match has been an immense source of purpose for Amy. Her organization’s lifesaving work literally cures cancer for thousands upon thousands of patients nationwide, and that powerful sense of purpose motivates Amy. But her work also sometimes takes an emotional toll; during our conversation, Amy related the story of a patient she had grown close to who had lost their fight with cancer, and she shares how she began crying on stage in front of a thousand people while telling the patient’s story. That experience taught Amy that vulnerability and authentic emotion doesn’t have to be hidden.

Because of Amy’s remarkably busy schedule as a female leader, CFO and Chief of Staff as well as her many board memberships and frequent travel, she gave up on trying to achieve that unicorn of “balance”. Instead, she works to integrate the aspects of her life more fully, including bringing her daughters with her for her work-related travel. Rather than trying to compartmentalize and dedicate blocks of time to each of the different areas of her life, Amy seeks to maximize her experiences and share them with her children.

I sincerely hope you enjoy and are inspired by my conversation with Amy Ronneberg. I urge you to consider registering to become a donor with Be The Match; it’s an easy process similar to giving blood, and doing so can literally save lives. Please visit www.bethematch.org for more information on how you can give one of the most precious gifts to someone in desperate need. And please also visit www.intentionalgreatnesspodcast.com for more inspiring and uplifting episodes of remarkable female leaders and other women leaders like this one.

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