President and Founder, Deirdre Imus Environmental Center for Pediatric Oncology
Deirdre Imus is the founder and President of The Deirdre Imus Environmental Center for Pediatric Oncology, part of Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC) in New Jersey, a 501c3 not-for-profit corporation. The Deirdre Imus Center represents one of the first hospital-based programs whose specific mission is to identify, control, and ultimately prevent exposures to environmental factors that may cause adult, and especially pediatric cancer, as well as other health problems with our children. The center works with parents, schools, hospitals, businesses, and political leaders at the local, state, and national levels.
Imus grew up in Waterbury, Connecticut, and earned a bachelor of arts degree in international relations from Villanova University. In college, she was a successful track athlete, beginning a lifetime passion for health and wellness. She has completed several triathlons and twice ran the New York City marathon.
During her early career as an actress and fitness trainer, she appeared on the Imus in the Morning radio program. She soon began volunteering for Don Imus’ annual radiothons to raise funds for children with cancer and blood diseases. Two years later, in 1994, she and Don Imus married. In 1998, Deirdre Imus and her husband founded the Imus Cattle Ranch for Kids with Cancer, a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit, authentic, 4,000-acre working cattle ranch in northern New Mexico. The ranch provides the experience of the American cowboy to children suffering from cancer and various blood diseases, and to children who have lost a brother or sister to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). The Imus Ranch is completely organic, serving a strict vegetarian diet, with no pesticides or synthetic chemicals used in gardening, farming, or plant maintenance.
In her work with sick children, Deirdre Imus began investigating the role of everyday environmental toxins in contributing to illnesses. Encouraging HUMC to use nontoxic cleaning products became the first step in reducing the amount of toxins to which children are routinely exposed. Beginning with Hackensack University Medical Center, Imus created and implemented the Greening the Cleaning program. More than 200 health care facilities, government authorities, businesses and schools have implemented the program to date. For the institutional line of products, all profits go back to Imus’ nonprofit center for education and research to identify, control, and ultimately prevent exposures to environmental factors that may cause adult, and especially pediatric cancer, as well as other health problems with our children. For the retail line, all profits go to the Imus Cattle Ranch.
The work of Imus and her center is now expanding into a book series filled with practical insights and solutions to protect our families. The first book, Green This! Volume I: Greening Your Cleaning, is currently a New York Times bestseller. She has appeared on NBC’s Today show, on ABC’s The View, and in magazines from Prevention to Town and Country. Her first book was the national bestseller The Imus Ranch: Cooking for Kids and Cowboys.
In 2006, her frequent personal appearances included an address to more than 300 students and faculty from Pace’s Lienhard School of Nursing. In 2007 Spectrum Magazine named her “Person of the Year.”