Native Houstonian and invasive ductile carcinoma survivor, Tarshia Boutte, is the team captain of Texas’ first breast cancer survivor dragon boat team, Pink Phurree . At 5’11” tall, Tarshia was built for the engine room. You can often hear her voice from the shoreline as she motivates her Pink Phurree crew mates to the finish line. Off the water, Tarshia works as a corporate trainer, leads a water exercise class at her gym, serves in her church’s children’s ministry, and loves to embark on adventures with family and friends.
14 years ago, on the day following her first chemotherapy infusion, Tarshia participated in her first dragon boat practice and was completely hooked. For a 36-year-old newly diagnosed breast cancer survivor, dragon boat paddling alongside fellow warriors was then and still now therapeutic for body, mind, and spirit.
Since being introduced to dragon boat paddling back in August 2007, Tarshia has had the opportunity to race in breast cancer, women’s, master’s, mixed competitive, and community divisions with Pink Phurree and other teams within the United States, Canada, Europe, and the Middle East. This has afforded her to make many acquaintances through the sport of dragon boating. Dragon boat connections are essential to building strong community, team member development, and promoting the sport within the public-at-large.
As International Breast Cancer Paddling Commission National Representative for the Midwestern Region of the United States, Tarshia is looking forward to pursuing opportunities for Midwest Region teams to collaborate, promote paddler and team development, prepare for IBCPC Participatory Festival New Zealand 2023, and remain informed of and have a voice concerning issues impacting our community of survivors.
Tarshia continues to be inspired by the courage, strength, and sisterhood found within this unconventional support group of breast cancer survivors among her crew of Pink Phurree and within the international breast cancer survivor dragon boat paddling community.
Tarshia “Tar-sha” Boutte