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Cynt Marshall, Sandi Chapman, and James Fripp on When Their Life Took an Unexpected Turn

How a cancer diagnosis, a spouse's death, and being disqualified from the armed services changed career trajectories.
By | |Illustrations by Jake Meyers, headshots courtesy of companies
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Cynt Marshall

CEO, Dallas Mavericks

“I was diagnosed with Stage 3 colon cancer in December 2010. I started chemotherapy a month later. I called upon my faith, family, friends, and great medical professionals to help me. I was very public about my journey because I couldn’t face it or fight it alone. I focused on the ‘can’ in cancer, knowing that I was uniquely equipped for the journey. It was unexpected. It was brutal. I still have side effects from chemo. But I am cancer-free. I am blessed.”

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Sandra Bond Chapman

Founder and Chief Director Center for BrainHealth

“My first husband died when I was in the middle of my doctoral program. I was paralyzed and felt as though I could not continue a single day more on my track. All hope seemed to disappear when he died. But his deathbed wish for me was that I would finish my PhD and someday have a center to help the patients and individuals I cared so much about to discover new pathways of brain repair and resilience. I carried on, and his wish inspires me still.”

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James Fripp

Chief Equity, Inclusion, and Belonging Officer, Yum! Brands

“My dream in life was to follow my father’s footsteps and join the Air Force. But when I went to enlist, I was PDQ’d (permanently disqualified) because I had eczema. My professional life, as I saw it, was over. But once I changed my mindset, I went all in on my career with Yum! Brands. As a result, I have not only achieved my personal goals, I’m able to positively influence and impact lives globally on a daily basis.”

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Ben Swanger

Ben Swanger

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Ben Swanger is the managing editor for D CEO, the business title for D Magazine. Ben manages the Dallas 500, monthly…

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