If there was ever a celebrity couple who have faced adversity and not only overcome but turned into something positive, it’s Bill and Giuliana Rancic.
Bill Rancic was the first winner in 2004 of Donald Trump’s The Apprentice. His prize for winning that was to be given oversight of construction of the Trump Tower Chicago, his hometown. From there he became an author and motivational speaker and eventually started hosting a news program with Leeza Gibbons. He also owns a popular Chicago-based restaurant RPM-Italian.
Giuliana Rancic was working for E! as a correspondent when she interviewed Bill Rancic after he won The Apprentice. They became engaged in 2006 and married in 2007. She continues to work for E!, not only as the anchor of their flagship E! News but as a co-anchor of the weekly show Fashion Police and co-hosting the red carpet events for such award shows as the Oscars, Emmys and Golden Globes. Together, they host their own reality show, Giuliana and Bill (a show that couldn’t be less like Keeping Up With the Kardashians if it tried).
After their marriage, the couple went public with their difficulty in having a child. After trying in vitro fertilization (IVF) twice, Giuliana Rancic’s doctor recommended she have a routine mammogram because of her age before she tried IVF a third time. That mammogram revealed she had breast cancer and Giuliana Rancic had a double mastectomy in 2011. Because of her history with cancer, the Rancics moved forward with having a child via a surrogate and their son, Edward Duke Rancic, was born in August 2012.
Since then, both Rancics have used their story and struggles as the foundation for giving many motivational talks about overcoming adversity and moving forward. One of the things Giuliana Rancic realized was that her job and its perks – having her hair and makeup done professionally and being given the opportunity to wear designer clothes – was a special kind of therapy that helped her on her road to recovery.
So she teamed up with her friend, Lindsay Avner, the founder of Bright Pink. Bright Pink is a national non-profit organization that focuses on both early detection and prevention of both breast and ovarian cancer in young women. They also provide support for women who are at high-risk for developing cancer (think Angelina Jolie and her recent decision to undergo an elective double mastectomy to prevent cancer).
Lindsay Avner and Giuliana Rancic developed Fab-U-Wish that wants to make the dreams and wishes of women who have been diagnosed with or are survivors of breast or ovarian cancer come true. They encourage women to apply for their own wish or nominate another woman and ask for any kind of what they call a “fun, feminine dream” in such areas as beauty, celebrity or fashion and their goal is to grant as many of the wishes as possible.
They believe that in a world where you’re dealing with doctors and diagnoses, being able to do something that makes a woman both look good and feel good about herself is a real part of the emotional journey of healing. Good for them.