Jamaica Cancer Society's (JCS) executive director Yulit Gordon is working the floor, greeting guests with handshakes, air kisses and the occasional back pat at the JCS's movie premiere fund-raiser at Palace Cineplex. A garland of flowers around her head, the perky Gordon is outfitted in a strapless, green dress — a perfect colour choice for last Tuesday's premiere of the film, The Odd Life of Timothy Green. As the final credits roll, we catch up over sips of vino.
What are you drinking?
I'm having a glass of Barefoot Moscato.
How was the movie premiere fund-raiser?
It was absolutely a beautiful event. Michele Lee's decor was awesome and the wines from Bin 26 were just right. The movie shared the message of the Jamaica Cancer Society — one of hope. Most importantly, the company was warm and welcoming.
Jeans or LBD?
I love jeans because of the flexibility it allows. One can always jazz it up with a fabulous top or dress it down with a simple T-shirt.
Flats or stilettos?
Stilettos! It not only gives height but confidence.
What perfume are you spraying?
Trésor by Lancôme.
What are four essentials you never leave home without?
Money, antibacterial gel, hand cream, and lip balm.
How would you describe your personal style?
I love fashion. I love to dress in feminine clothing that are soft, romantic, youthful, and project confidence. I dress up for every occasion.
What's in your handbag?
My Armani sunglasses, Revlon lipstick, a butterfly hair clip, translucent powder, a bag hanger and my BlackBerry.
As executive director of the Jamaica Cancer Society, how would you assess our country's awareness of cancer-related ailments?
The JCS is the face of cancer here in Jamaica. We are a library of information about cancer and we offer a host of services that address this disease. Thanks to the work that we do, most Jamaicans are aware of the disease, the risk factors and how to engage in healthy lifestyles and behaviours. Despite these efforts, we still continue to experience high incidence of the disease. A big contributor to this is the high cost to access medical care. Most persons, upon diagnosis, cannot afford to access the treatment privately and publicly; the waiting list is far too long.
What are your current goals at the JCS?
The first task is to purchase a new mobile mammography unit, which will facilitate islandwide screening of women at risk of breast cancer. I am also looking to significantly increase the number of women we screen for cervical and breast cancer and also train and develop my staff.
Who is your philanthropic idol?
I don't have any idols but I have always admired Oprah Winfrey for the role she plays in championing the cause of needy children around the world by the provision of shelter, scholarships and mentorship programmes.
What are you listening to on your iPod or your car stereo?
Adele's 21 album. She is absolutely awesome and her lyrics speak volumes of love, loss, hope, and love again.
What's your idea of the perfect man?
Someone who has strong family values, who loves the Lord, who works very hard, and has a heart for volunteerism.
What's your idea of the perfect date?
He arrives on time and he opens the car door for me. He dresses well and smells good, too. I like outdoor restaurants that are quiet enough for us to engage in conversation.
Where do you see yourself 10 years from now?
I hope to be making a more significant contribution to the development of myself, others and Jamaica.