Former Congresswoman Jackie Speier has breast cancer

Former U.S. Rep. Jackie Speier (D-San Mateo) shared candid news that she has breast cancer in a series of messages on social media on Thursday. 

"I have personal news that I want to share with you because we can all learn from it," Speier wrote on X. "I just became one of the 300,000 women per year who are diagnosed with breast cancer."

She said she had a mammogram in June 2023 and was planning to return this summer, and almost didn't go because she was busy.

But she was glad she did. 

The "good news," she continued, was that the cancer was discovered early at UCSF, and she had a successful lumpectomy on Tuesday.

She credited doctors Dr. Laura Esserman, Kimberly Ray and Alissa Price by name, adding that the lesson is to be "diligent about your own screenings and don't skip them." 

Speier served in Congress from 2008 to 2023 and won a seat in March to be a San Mateo County supervisor.

Speier is a survivor. 

She first ran for office after surviving a 1978 ambush by cult followers that killed her congressman boss, Rep. Leo J. Ryan, on a flight to Guyana in a disastrous 1978 attempt to rescue 900 followers of the cult leader Jim Jones.

"I vowed that if I survived, I would dedicate my life to public service," Speier said in a 2021 video announcing her retirement from Congress. "I lived, and I served."