What Makes a Smart Cookie?


Valerie Sobel Knows. She's a great friend and the smartest cookie I know.

She's a finalist for the 2009 Smart Cookie Award, recognizing extraordinary women who balance family and a career making life better for other moms.

The winner receives a $35,000 prize for her favorite charity and national TV coverage, all sponsored by Cookie Magazine.

Valerie is my pick to win! Please vote for her today!

Sobel is the Founder of The Andre Sobel River of Life Foundation, a foundation that pays urgent expenses for single parent families whose children are catastrophically ill.

When Valerie Sobel's son, Andre, was dying of a brain tumor, she was at his hospital bedside every minute. During that time, she couldn't help but notice how many terminally ill children were alone because their single parents couldn't afford to miss any work or to hire day care to watch over the sick child's siblings.

After Andre died, Sobel established the Andre Sobel River of Life Foundation to pay for urgent expenses (rent, gas, utilities, food) so that single moms can focus on being with their sick and dying children. Sobel is the mother of Andre (deceased) and Simone, 29. The Foundation's mission is: "When compassion can't wait and single parent families are in despair, we help with urgent expenses to allow these caregivers to stay at their child's bedside during catastrophic illness."