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The Crown Diaries: Dana Donofree, CEO of AnaOno Intimates

Wendy Williams, Podcasts, Fashion Shows, Breast Cancer Awareness Month... and pizza

Welcome to The Crown Diaries, an SXS look at the real-life experiences of women running businesses, crushing their career, and rocking their passion projects. For each Crown Diary, we ask one woman to provide a behind-the-scenes account of “a week in the life”: where did she go, what did she do, who did she meet? Read on to find out!

Interested in submitting a Crown Diary? Contact us.

The Crown Diaries: Dana Donofree, CEO of AnaOno

ABOUT ME: Dana Donofree (@AnaOnoIntimates, @DaynaDono), 37, CEO of AnaOno (

CITY: Philadelphia, PA

MISSION: To advocate and support women’s health initiatives, especially surround the unmet needs of those diagnosed with breast cancer through volunteer work with Living Beyond Breast Cancer and METAvivor, and supporting women feeling beautiful with AnaOno. #NeverAlone

ADDITIONAL DEGREES/CERTIFICATIONS: SCAD Distinguished Alumni (The Savannah College of Art and Design)

FAVORITE SETTING TO WORK: AnaOno HQ, because changing just one woman’s life is worth all the hard work and dedication!

FUN FACT: "My all-time dream was to be Janet Jackson's choreographer."

BUSINESS or LIFESTYLE MEMBERSHIPS/COURSES: Harvard Leadership Certified, Women's Business Enterprise National Council (WBENC) Certified, Alliance of Women Entrepreneurs


You can support the mission of AnaOno by purchasing one of their bras - perfect for work or lounging! Dana has given the SXS community $15 off to shop, including the all-new Leslie Soft Leisure Bra (which doubles as a sports bra)! Click here to shop $15 off!




I wake up bright and early to conquer a very busy week with exciting events and amazing opportunities! Monday mornings always come with a bit of pressure and overwhelming feelings. My calendar is full, but full of my passions. Now it's time to conquer!


I head into New York City for some really incredible meetings, both for business for preparation of breast cancer awareness month! So thrilled to have the chance to show and tell more about my story and the story of AnaOno during a casting at Wendy Williams. The Wendy Williams show kicks off Breast Cancer Awareness Month with their legendary "Breast Cancer Eye Candy" segment. You can watch me on-air here!


Back on the train to head home to Philly. I always find it a bit overwhelming running into NYC, hitting the streets of Manhattan, and jumping back on the train to head home. I'm a little tired from the go-go-go from the day. Too many emails to answer tonight and hoping to wind down with the hubby.


Got to chat with Tie Jones (@Lovejonestie) on her podcast, The Voice. We cover it all from facing breast cancer diagnosis ourselves, to disparities faced by minorities in the cancer world, to running a business. (Listen to this amazing episode here!)


Quick call with an investor and advisor to get some last minute insight on a big opportunity!


Dinner with my hubby; he surprises me with a pizza! He really does love me!




No alarm needed this morning. There was too much running through my mind for a sound night of sleep, but I'm ready to conquer the day! (One of the woes of running a business, no sound sleep!)


Taking care of some morning chores, cause someone’s gotta do them!


Just closed an awesome deal to bring more mastectomy bra options to women just like me! It feels amazing to know that big brands see the need of dressing and supporting such an important body and person! Can you guess what it is....? Adore Me just launched their campaign featuring our AnaOno awareness video!


I head to a Marie Forleo book signing and left feeling empowered by amazing female entrepreneurs and go-getters! Marie always says everything is “figureoutable," which is now part of my daily mantra (and the title of her new book!).


Another late night dinner with my man and my pup... exhausted due to a busy and exciting day, but also feeling a bit behind already (and it’s only Tuesday!) Gotta get ready for my big trip at the crack of dawn!




WAKE UP CALL - PHL airport, here I come! I'm headed to Illinois for an event for Breast Cancer Awareness Month. (Why can I wake up this early for the airport but not for the gym? My personal conundrum I will never quite figure out, maybe one day...). My motivation for the morning - get out there and #RockWhatIGot, a motto from my dear old friend Jill Conley, late founder of Jill's Wish.


Just a casual walk past the magazine rack to get to my flight gate and there it is.... the October Feature of HEALTH magazine.... where I see my profile alongside several other badass cancer kickers! It feels so cool to see my feature in a magazine, right next to Oprah! WOWZA!


After 2 planes and tons of emails (and maybe even a tiny nap), we land in Southern Illinois for the weekend’s festivities - #BRADay, Breast Reconstruction Day hosted by SIU Medicine for their patients, supporters, and community.


After the event is over, we have dinner at Danenberger Family Vineyards in Springfield, IL. During her wine launch, my dear friend Susan Danenberger surprised me with my favorite bottle of wine, by featuring the AnaOno Miena robe on the label! Can I say, sexy? Why, yes I can. I enjoyed the evening meeting all the incredible SIU hospital staff that made this happen!


It’s off to bed I go, after a long long day traveling, working and early morning radio spot has me up and at them first thing tomorrow. Nighty night.




Calltime for my radio spot with SringfieldSports Radio to talk about our event tonight, the Ana Ono Pop-Up shop at Eye Candy Boutique. Joining me on the show is an incredible plastic surgeon helping patients after a cancer diagnosis; our model and Stage IV breast cancer patient, Susan; Lolita the #RunwayBoss and Strut coach for our event; and yours truly.


I make a Target run for last minute event supplies! After grabbing clothing racks and coffee, I'm off to our Ana Ono Pop-Up at Eye Candy Boutique where I'm about to embark on our fittings of both the 16 patient models and other breast cancer patients and survivors. It's going to be a jam packed day full of love, hope, and even some tears.


After fitting so many amazing women, one in particular stands out. A beautiful young woman and military vet, says to me, “Dana, I can't believe it! This is my first time feeling beautiful in 8 years!” I still tear up when someone shares this with me. As survivors, thrivers, and previvors, we live so much of our lives feeling down or feeling bad about ourselves and our new bodies. AnaOno is there to remind us that something as simple as a bra can help us all feel good again, feel beautiful again, and feel SEXY again!


We wrap up shop. It's off to dinner with my Mom, who came to help me from Ohio. We unwind from the day, share stories, and gear up for the BIG fashion show tomorrow for #BRAday




It’s hair and makeup time for the Angels Among Us fashion show at Danenberger Family Vineyards! The models are excited and nervous, but super ready for the evening's show to bring awareness to breast cancer and the lives it affects.


It's go time! Repeating to myself - Show up, set up, rock it! It’s time to get ready for the show, featuring 16 breast cancer patients and survivors. Angels Among Us features different breast reconstruction choices and decisions, because it doesn’t matter what you face, it's your body and your life. We are so excited to support this community!


Showtime – Rock & Roll ladies!


Bedtime. It’s been an emotional day, inspiring and full of love. Getting to know 16 incredibly women who are fighting every day is unforgettable. The love, the courage, and the support knows no bounds! Each of these babes rocked it, and have changed my life forever!




Homebound. Off to the airport to get back to my family and rest up for the next crazy week ahead.


I find my mat after this long and hectic week. I put my own health aside in order to rest up fully and didn’t get as much exercise as I had hoped to. While I like to argue that running around like a crazy woman is also exercise (😉), it isn't quite the same as getting some deep breaths in from yoga.


You can support the mission of AnaOno by purchasing one of their bras - perfect for work or lounging! Dana has given the SXS community $15 off to shop (and says you'll love the Leslie Soft Leisure Bra)! Click here to shop $15 off!


The Crown Diaries are meant to reflect individual women's experiences and do not necessarily reflect SHExSHINES point of view.

Do you have a Crown Diary you'd like to share? Submit it with us here.


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