Carnegie Mellon News Online Edition: June 27, 2001
Carnegie Mellon News Online Edition
In This Issue
H'Olympics Held Here

Former Provost Paul Christiano Dies

University Gets Another $20 Million from Paul Mellon's Estate

New England Conservatory Provost Named Music Head

Virtual Space Scientists

MCS Staff Awards

Alberto Guzman Retires from CMRI

Engineering Class Builds Pavilion for Doherty

Changing of the Guard at the Heinz School

Stephanie Byram

Heinz School Races for the Cure

News Briefs

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Bryam BMW Obituary:
Stephanie Byram Dedicated Herself to Breast Cancer Awareness, Research

Stephanie Byram, a post-doctoral research fellow in the Psychology Department, died at her home in Squirrel Hill on June 9 after an eight-year battle with breast cancer. She was 38.

Byram underwent a double mastectomy in 1993 and since that time had tirelessly dedicated herself to promoting breast cancer research, education and awareness. She participated in 30 of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation's Race for the Cure events across the country and had helped to raise more than $50,000 for breast cancer research and education.

With the help of Associate Professor of Design and photographer Charlee Brodsky, she published a Web site ( that tells the story of "how one woman pieces together a new self after breast cancer." Byram and Brodsky also produced a video of her story, which is available on, and a book will soon be published.

Byram and Brodsky had given lectures, presentations, slide shows and inspirational talks to groups around the country.

"Stephanie was my subject, my collaborator and my friend, in no particular order," Brodsky said. "There was never a separation between our work and our play. That was part of our bond."

Brodsky said they motivated one another and enjoyed being together.

"We both gained a lot of insight into life from working with each other," she said.

Bryam This past July, Byram was recognized by the Komen Foundation and BMW of North America as Pittsburgh's "Local Hero."

"I feel flattered to be chosen both as a breast cancer survivor and as an artist communicating the tragedy and hope the disease brought to me," she said following the award presentation. "It's complex, but, together with my collaborator Charlee Brodsky, I want people to realize there's a lot of living to be done, even under difficult circumstances."

Her husband since 1998, Associate Professor of Computer Science Garth Gibson, said Byram had taken hiking trips with family and friends in Nepal and Peru. He said she went on a safari in Zambia and Botswanna, snorkeling at the Great Barrier Reef, canoeing in Canada and camping in American National Parks.

Gibson said in the last two months she took a trip to visit family and friends in her home state of Washington and in Toronto, Canada.

"I am so very proud of Stephanie, of the life she lived and the noble way she prepared for her death," Gibson said.

A native of Spokane, Wash., Byram earned her bachelor's degree in business administration from Washington State University. She moved to Pittsburgh in 1990 to study social and decision sciences at Carnegie Mellon. She earned her doctor's degree in behavioral and decision theory in 1998.

Her doctoral thesis was about women's reactions to their mammogram test results. Her research focused on how the mind affects the body in the development and treatment of cancer.

Contributions in Byram's honor may be made to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation, P.O. Box 650309, Dallas, Texas 75265-0309.

Bruce Gerson

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