Back (L-R): Carson Davis and Joelle Cardwell

Front (L-R): Brenda Bianchi, Blair Grass,

Hannah Neimy, Susan Cram-Smith,

and Katherine Brown 

Not pictured: Dr. Joseph Mathews & Chelsea Middlebrook

 Boon Project Gala "Heroes and Heroines"

Photographer: Kayce Smoak

Katherine Brown, President & Executive Director

Katherine is founder of The Boon Project, twin sister of a Stage IV survivor, as well as a wife, mom, and teacher. Katherine is passionate about the mission of The Boon Project and hopes to see it serve as a source of information, support, and community for young adults diagnosed with cancer in the Lowcountry.  Katherine lives in Summerville with her husband, Justin, a pharmacist, and their four children, Kinley, Caroline, Anderson and Thomas.


The Boon Project Board welcomes

Dr. Joseph Mathews as Vice President!

Dr. Joseph Mathews, Vice President

Dr. Mathews was born and raised in South Carolina and underwent his medical training in Charleston at The Medical University of South Carolina.  He is board certified in Internal Medicine and Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Metabolism. He has also received additional training at The Mayo Clinic, concentrating on treatment for thyroid cancer.  He currently serves as the Director of Endocrinology for Palmetto Primary & Specialty Care Physicians, the largest independent group of physicians in South Carolina.   

The Boon Project is a passion for Dr. Mathews, having been touched by cancer on multiple levels.  He was diagnosed with thyroid cancer while undergoing his fellowship training for Endocrinology. He also supported his wife through her diagnosis of breast cancer at the age of 32. Professionally he provides care for patients dealing with their own thyroid cancer diagnosis or from the endocrine related side effects of treatments for other cancers.  He is a frequently invited speaker at national conferences across the country regarding various endocrine related conditions, but his heart and home remains in the Lowcountry with his wife, two children and golden retriever in Charleston.


Brenda Bianchi, Secretary

Brenda is a Charleston native, passionate about supporting the fight against cancer. She lost her mother to cancer in 2005 and her father has been a survivor since 2007. Brenda, a teacher, and her husband, Nick, an attorney, have three daughters. In regards to her role with The Boon Project, Brenda shares, "I am very excited that Katherine has brought me on board to work for such an important cause and am eager to help in any way that I can."

Susan Cram-Smith, Survivor Representative

Susan is the twin sister of The Boon Project Founder. Diagnosed with Stage IV cancer in 2015, just weeks after turning 31 years old, Susan is all too familiar with the unique challenges associated with a cancer fight at this phase of life. Thanks to a drug trial at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, Susan’s cancer is stable and she continues to work as a dance teacher and raise her children. She lives in Charleston, where her local oncology community works cooperatively with her out of state trial team for her continued care.  Susan is loved and supported by a big extended family and loving friends.


dr. joseph mathews.jpg

Carson Davis, Treasurer

Carson uses his accounting and finance education from USC to expand The Boon Project's programming and strengthen its ability to serve the young adult cancer fighting population. He lives in Charleston, frequenting the beach and many locally-owned restaurants while working as a CPA for a broad range of tax clients. Carson shares, "The Boon Project is making a difference in the lives of our friends, family, and neighbors. The organization’s community has built bonds and provided resources necessary to support young adult cancer fighters.” 

Joelle Cardwell, Marketing

Joelle is excited to use her marketing, media, public relations, and event planning experience to further The Boon Project’s mission. She is the sister in law of the founder Katherine Brown and survivor representative Susan Cram-Smith. Joelle has had cancer affect many friends and family members and sees just how important The Boon Project is to those who have been affected by cancer.

Joelle graduated from the College of Charleston with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications and has had internships and jobs at local radio stations, television stations, and public relation firms. She also has experience in corporate event planning.  She is married and has two rescue dogs.

Blair Grass, Young Adult Cancer Guide

The Boon Project is fortunate to be able to offer the services of a volunteer nurse as our Young Adult Cancer Guide.  Blair is available via phone, email, or scheduled appointment to meet with young adults facing cancer (and their caregivers.)  She does not give medical advice, but rather helps navigate what can be a very confusing and overwhelming process. Please contact Blair through our Boon Project Director, Katherine Brown at katherine@boonproject.org or (843) 754-1879.

Hannah Neimy, Survivor Representative

Hannah is a Hodgkins Lymphoma (stage III) survivor, diagnosed while pursuing a degree in biology at The College of Charleston. Hannah is still passionate about helping other young adults navigating the complicated, and often times overwhelming, cancer fight. Currently, Hannah is applying to medical schools with the hopes of someday going into hematology/oncology. Hannah shares, “as a board member of The Boon Project, it is my goal to share my story with the hopes of helping, inspiring, and encouraging other young adults whose lives have also been touched by cancer. I hope to help create a tight-knit community of advocates, survivors, and fighters with stories of their own.


Chelsea Middlebrook, Caregiver Representative

(Bio coming soon!)