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SANDRA DENNIS

Death Notice
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DENNIS SANDRA DENNIS "Sandi" Sandi Dennis, a former South Carolina local television news personality turned Washington, DC healthcare regulatory attorney, passed away on Wednesday, September 18, 2013, due to cancer. She was 57. She is survived by her husband Richard Singer, daughter Emilie, brother and sister-in-law Leonard and Nadine Polish, and sister and brother-in-law Susan and Mort Ansky. Sandi was an inspiration to her friends, family and colleagues. She faced her cancer with a blend of passion, courage, humor, and grace. For Sandi, her diagnosis served as an opportunity to educate, inform, and inspire others fighting the disease. She documented her diagnoses, test results, treatments, and daily struggles in her blog, CancerDiva4Ever, where she mixed humor with her understanding of science and a deep appreciation of the beauty of life. In doing so, Sandi drew on her personal experiences and knowledge as one of the nation's top healthcare regulatory attorneys. Sandi served as the deputy general counsel for healthcare at the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), a DC-based trade association. Her work there focused on educating biotechnology companies about emerging legal and policy issues affecting the development of ground-breaking new medicines, and advocating on their behalf with Congress and executive agencies to help expedite the approval of treatments for patients most in need. Sandi was a sought after speaker, and the author of numerous publications, on healthcare and regulatory matters. She also had a long history as a devoted volunteer on behalf of women's health research, including pro bono legal assistance. Prior to joining BIO, Sandi was a partner in the FDA practice group at Morgan Lewis & Bockius, where she advised food, pharmaceutical, biotech and medical device clients across the globe. She was a key member of the firm's team that successfully won FDA re-approval of certain breast implants, which was an important development for patients requiring breast reconstruction. Sandi grew up in Philadelphia, where her father, a kosher butcher, and her mother lived for decades. Sandi received her bachelor's degree in journalism from Penn State University in 1978. She began her career as a local television news reporter and anchor in Columbia, South Carolina, and served as a freelance correspondent for ABC News and CNN. She decided to change careers and pursue the legal profession, graduating from the University of South Carolina School of Law in 1984. After law school, Sandi moved to DC and worked at the law firms of Keller & Heckman and then Fox, Bennett & Turner, as an Associate and Partner. Sandi was admitted to the DC bar, and was elected to serve in the American Bar Association House of Delegates earlier in her career. In her free time, Sandi enjoyed yoga and fine wines. Most of all, she loved spending time with her beloved daughter Emilie and husband Richard, and was a devoted aunt and great aunt to her nieces and nephews. Sandi will be laid to rest in Rock Creek Cemetery, near her home of many years, on September 23, 2013 at 11 a.m. In lieu of flowers, donations in her memory should be sent to Washington Home & Community Hospices, In-patient Unit, 3720 Upton St., NW, Washington, DC 20016.

Published in The Washington Post on Sept. 22, 2013
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