During the coming months, we’ll be highlighting our fighters in training for the upcoming Belles of the Brawl VI in Boston on October 10th. They’ve committed to four months of fundraising and training in preparation to get in the ring and literally fight for a cure. Whether they've had first hand experience, their father has passed or their friend has put up a victory against the disease – they’ve all got a story to tell and they’ve all got a reason to fight. Below you’ll hear from Stephanie Rokitowski, fighting out of Haverhill Downtown Boxing.

Where are you from?
Georgetown, MA

Where’d you go to college?
Northeastern University

Did you play any sports growing up?
If soccer until I was 8 counts then yes

What do you do for work?
Information Security

Why boxing? Did you ever picture yourself fighting?
While I've always been interested in boxing I never thought I would actually fight, but I'm always up for a new way to challenge myself physically and mentally so here we are!

Why on earth did you sign up to fight??
First, I love that the mission of Haymakers is to help fund cancer research and patient care. We all know someone who has been touched by this horrible disease. No one chooses to have cancer, they can't choose their fight. But we can choose to fight for them. Beyond that, I want to prove to myself that I can do this. I've watched the Belles before and just remember walking away feeling that they were totally bad ass and so inspired.

You’re stepping in the ring to literally fight for a cure – Where are you drawing your inspiration from? How has cancer affected you?
My mom is a breast cancer survivor. She was diagnosed early on so we consider her one of the lucky ones, but as a teenager watching her go through treatment was tough. 15+ years later I still see how her body was affected by the disease. She's only incredibly strong woman! I'm fighting for women like her and anyone else tackling this disease.

What is going to be the most difficult thing to give up during your training? (beer, cheeseburgers, time spent watching TV?)
Honestly, I'm a weight training junkie. Making that mindset shift in training has been the biggest so far.

When you’re not throwing punches and training -- what other hobbies/interests do you have?
I volunteer with a local animal rescue.

Who do you think is the most excited to watch you get punched in the face come fight night?
Probably the person throwing the punches.

Be sure to check out her fundraising page and wish her luck! Best of luck, Stephanie!