Get to Know Brenda Frachiseur of Placerville
Placerville resident Brenda Frachiseur was working for United Cerebral Palsy (UCP) in 1998 when she was diagnosed with stage 4 breast cancer. Although her mother died of lung cancer three years earlier, Frachiseur wasn’t about to let cancer stop her—or even slow her down. “I never missed a day of work, except when I had to do chemo in the hospital,” Frachiseur shares. “I’m a strong believer in the power of positive thinking.” With her admirable attitude and a little time, she beat the disease and is happy to be cancer-free today.
After her tenure at UCP (working there all the while she was fighting cancer), Frachiseur moved on to spend four years as the assistant state executive director at Mothers Against Drunk Driving—a role she found both fulfilling and incredibly difficult. “It was my job to give hope to people suffer[ing] the worst kind of loss,” she explains. “It was very emotionally challenging.”
Two years ago, Frachiseur became the new executive director of Big Brothers Big Sisters of El Dorado County, a nonprofit that pairs volunteers with at-risk children as a way to help ensure their future success. As a mother of two biological and three adopted children, Frachiseur is especially passionate about giving children every possible advantage in life. “Any child can grow up to give back to the community,” she asserts. “They’re our future—that’s the bottom line.”
— Amber Foster / Photo by Dante Fontana
Q&AQ: What advice would you give to your younger self?
A: You can do anything—just believe in yourself.
Q: What comes to you naturally?
A: Caring about others.
Q: What’s your biggest pet peeve?
A: Bigotry, intolerance or disrespect of others.
Q: What are you most proud of?
A: Other than my family, I was a part of bringing the first accessible equipment to a regional park in the Sacramento area; it’s now a park where children of all abilities can play.
Q: Favorite humanitarian cause?
A: Anything child-related. I believe we can change the world, one child at a time.
Q: Best words of wisdom you’ve received?
A: Sometimes a setback is really a setup.