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Making Strides to benefit from Mother's Day eCard campaign

Moms always say that it's important to help others. In less than two weeks, mothers everywhere will be celebrated with flowers, chocolates, and possibly one of our eCards which is helping to do just what moms always preach! This Mother's Day, we are giving our Making Strides donors the opportunity to not only support an important cause, but be able to do so in honor of a mom in their life that they want to celebrate.

When an individual donates to Making Strides now through Mother's Day (Sunday, May 14) via MakingStridesWalk.org/MothersDay, they have the opportunity to share one of several eCards with a loved one in honor of the special day. They are then encouraged to share their involvement on their social networks.

This effort is a great early fundraiser for our Making Strides participants, and a timely way to encourage people to sign up and get started in fundraising. Donations can be credited to a Making Strides participant, team, event, or the general fund.

Be sure you are following our national Making Strides social media channels and share the posts on your social networks about this opportunity!

In honor of all the moms out there, let's spread the love this Mother's Day!

 

  • Major League Lacrosse names ACS its first official charity; will launch MLL Pink Challenge in May

    ​The American Cancer Society has initiated a new sports partnership with Major League Lacrosse (MLL) that builds off our successful Real Men War Pink campaign. The Real Men of Major League Lacrosse, however, will take place in May, not October, providing a fresh, uncluttered space for a breast cancer fundraiser with a launch date that aligns with Mother's Day.

    Lacrosse fans will be able to pick their favorite player and pledge for every goal, save, or groundball they record through the specially designed Pledge It website, MLLPinkChallenge.org. The funds raised by each player will help their team reach the top of the leaderboard and be crowned “Real Men Wear Pink Team of the Year.” 

    "For the first time in the seventeen-year history of our league, we have united every team behind a singular philanthropic effort," Commissioner David Gross said. "It is an honor to name the American Cancer Society as the first official charity of MLL. Too many lives have been touched by this disease and we are hopeful our partnership can play a small part in the eventual eradication of all forms of cancer from our world."

    Each team will host a "Pink Out" game where fans are encouraged to wear pink to the game. The nine teams also have at least three unique promotions in place to raise awareness and support for their endeavors.

    The league is an extremely dedicated and engaged partner, agreeing to go above and beyond the month-long campaign through:

    • Auction of All-Star game jerseys on the ACS eBay site (July 8 in Sacramento)
    • Sales/donation from MLL Alumni Game at Lake Placid Summit Classic (August 4)
    • Highlighting the partnership at the MLL Championship in Dallas (August 19), where we'll honor the Real Men Wear Pink MLL team of the year and the Real Men Wear Pink MML man of the year.​

    About Major League Lacrosse
    MLL, the premier professional outdoor lacrosse league, was founded by Jake Steinfeld and is headquartered in Boston. MLL has continued to lead the sport of lacrosse into the mainstream of competitive team sports over the past 17 years. The league is made up of nine teams: The Atlanta Blaze, Boston Cannons, Charlotte Hounds, Chesapeake Bayhawks, Denver Outlaws, Florida Launch, New York Lizards, Ohio Machine and Rochester Rattlers.
     

  • NBA legend and cancer survivor Kareem Abdul-Jabbar delivers keynote at CvC Wisconsin Gala

    This year's Coaches vs. Cancer Wisconsin Gala featured a keynote speech by retired NBA legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, a cancer survivor. The April 29 event grossed nearly $525,000, bringing its 10-year total to more than $6.1 million. It is our most successful Coaches vs. Cancer gala.

    Abdul-Jabbar, who played 20 seasons in the National Basketball Association for the Milwaukee Bucks and the Los Angeles Lakers, was diagnosed with chronic myeloid leukemia (CML), a cancer of the blood and bone marrow, in 2008. 

    "I'm a survivor and it's very important for people to know cancer can be managed," he told 27 News in Madison, WI. ​One of the drugs used to treat CML is Gleevec, which was discovered by American Cancer Society-funded researcher Brian Druker, MD.

    Several years ago, Abdul-Jabbar served as a spokesperson for ACS CAN's OneDegree project aimed at getting Congress to increase funding for cancer research. 

    At last Saturday night's gala at Monona Terrace in Madison, the Society presented its Fan of the Year Award to the family of long-time youth basketball coach Glen Pretti from Mt. Horeb, and the Spirit of Hope Award to childhood cancer survivor Ian Lock from Fond du Lac. These awards are given annually at the Coaches vs. Cancer Wisconsin Gala to individuals who demonstrate courage, passion, and hope in the fight against cancer.

    Lock was 16 years old when he was diagnosed with osteosarcoma – a rare form of bone cancer. Thanks to advances in cancer research shortly before his diagnosis, doctors saved his leg using a cadaver bone, along with nearly 20 rounds of chemotherapy. Today, Ian is cancer-free and a senior at Macalester College in St. Paul, Minn., studying biology and economics. He was one of a group of cancer survivors who recently climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Africa.

    Ian also currently volunteers for the Society and its advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN. He's passionate about the role cancer research plays in saving lives, and testified before Congress in 2013​ to advocate for increased federal funding for cancer research.

    "While we still don't know what exactly caused my cancer, what I do know is if the National Institutes of Health hadn't funded the cancer research that led to new treatments – I could have lost my leg and even my life," Lock told members of Congress. "As you can imagine, cancer research means a lot to me."

    In addition to a three-course dinner, last Saturday's evening included live and silent auctions, and special fundraisers for pediatric cancer research. The latter brought in $165,000.

    PHOTOS: Pictured with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar in the top photo are ACS staffers. From left, are Laurie Bertrand, Diana Tatili, Christi Erickson, Dave Benson, Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, Amy Roher, Marieanna Wild, and Natalie Morrison. Pictured with Abdul-Jabbar in the smaller image are members of Coaches vs. Cancer Wisconsin Gala Board of Ambassadors.

  • CEOs across the country participate in first ever Fit2BeCancerFree challenge

    On April 19, our CEO Gary Reedy and other CEOs across the country participated in our first ever CEOs fitness challenge – Fit2BeCancerFree​​.​ 

    CEOs Against Cancer chapter members were invited to participate in this one-day virtual fitness challenge to inspire healthy and active lifestyles within the workplace. The challenge was also designed to help corporate leaders build awareness, lead by example, and make a measurable difference in saving lives from cancer. 

    CEOs and executive leaders tracked their steps using a step tracking device donated by Garmin. Real-time updates were posted throughout the day on a live leaderboard

    David Rainey, a Board member from Stone Energy Corporation, took first place in the challenge. Rainey logged an impressive 64,719 steps for a total distance of 32 miles! For all you step trackers out there, you know how hard it can be to get the recommended 10,000 steps in a day. Congratulations to David!

    Right behind him was Wendy Perry, managing director for Merck in Puerto Rico, logging 59,655 steps and 27 miles. 

    In total, Fit2BeCancerFree participants logged 658,883 steps for a total distance of 322 miles! 

    Leaders at many of the companies – like Boehringer Ingleheim in New England, Minor League Baseball in Florida, ION in California, and Triple-S in Puerto Rico – held events to encourage staff to increase their physical activity during the workday.

    In addition to inspiring healthy and active lifestyles, the Fit2BeCancerFree challenge was also a fundraising opportunity. Each participant made a $2,500 donation to the American Cancer Society.

    PHOTOS: The large top photo shows staff in Atlanta taking a walk-break with Gary. Pictured in the small photo is Bobby Garcia, president and chief executive officer of Triple-S Management Corporation with Triple-S employees.

  • Introducing Fit2BeCancerFree: A fitness challenge for CEOs

    Gary Reedy recently invited CEOs Against Cancer chapter members to participate in our first ever one-day CEOs fitness challenge – Fit2BeCancerFree – which will take place on Wednesday, April 19. 

    The fitness challenge is a step-tracking event held to inspire healthy and active lifestyles within the workplace, and to celebrate National Cancer Control Month in April. Additionally, the challenge is designed to help corporate leaders build awareness, lead by example, and make a measurable difference in saving lives from cancer.

    On April 19, the fun will begin with CEOs and executive leaders across the country tracking their steps using a step tracking device donated by Garmin. Real-time updates will be posted throughout the day on a live leader board hosted on cancer.org. Which CEO will lead the pack?  We can't wait to find out!  The top 20 participants will receive bragging rights, with the overall winning CEO getting a chance to have dinner with Gary.

    Fit2BeCancerFree was created as a fundraising opportunity, as well as a way to further engage the executive leadership audience beyond their local CEOs Against Cancer chapters through a national platform – fueled by a little bit of friendly competition. CEOs will be paying a $2,500 entry fee to participate.

    The hope is that this year's success will drive even greater engagement and fundraising success in years to come, shining a light on the collective power of CEOs to make change in the workplace and their high-profile support of the American Cancer Society's mission to save more lives from cancer. 

    On April 19, follow the leaderboard at cancer.org/ceoschallenge to track the results of top participants throughout the day.


  • Million-dollar donation puts Hope Lodge campaign over goal in Jacksonville, FLA

    The C. Herman and Mary Virginia Terry Foundation has pledged $1 million to the Society's Hope Lodge program in Florida. The gift closes the Schulze Jacksonville Hope Lodge capital campaign and takes it slightly over their goal of $19.2 million.

    In recognition of Mary Virginia Terry's largest gift to the Society, the lobby of the Schulze Jacksonville Hope Lodge will be named in her honor. Mrs. Terry, 98, is a longtime supporter of the Jacksonville Gala and Laureate Society. She and her late husband, C. Herman, are known throughout Jacksonville and the Southeast for their philanthropic efforts.

    Most of the credit for this gift goes to Kellie Ann Kelleher, director, Major Gift Campaigns, who brought this to fruition through the careful cultivation of strong relationships and good instincts.  

    When she joined the Society in July of 2014, she was advised not to contact volunteer Carter Bryan, a long-time friend of the Mrs. Terry, who had stopped supporting ACS after 40+ years of giving and volunteering because he was upset about Transformation.

    Instead, Kellie picked up the phone and asked Mr. and Mrs. Bryan to lunch. "I was seeking their advice because they had raised the money to build the Gainesville Hope Lodge in 1986, and later they made a leadership gift to the Tampa Hope Lodge campaign," she explained.

    Within six months, the Bryans made a 500,000 gift to the campaign and signed on to act as elder chairs of the Jacksonville Hope Lodge campaign.  And, it was Mr. Bryan who approached Mrs. Terry about making the naming gift.  

    "Along the way I learned to trust my instincts and let the relationships with these donors and volunteers be my guide," said Kellie Ann. "I learned not to be afraid of a 'No,' and to be more afraid of not asking."

    "I think this story is a model of what the Society can achieve with the hundreds of other donors in our database who have capacity, been giving a long time, and would actually be proud if we asked them for a gift at capacity to do transformational support of our mission," said Tim Torgerson, senior director, Principal Gifts. "Kellie Ann raised $9.6 million in two years in a community where the American Cancer Society has not developed a strong major gift platform until she arrived," he added.

    The Schulze Jacksonville Hope Lodge will be located on Mayo Clinic's Florida Campus on land generously provided by the Clinic. The facility will be comprised of 32 private suites, community areas where guests can connect with one another, and resources and information about cancer and how to best fight the disease. We expect to break ground on the Hope Lodge residence in 2017.

    The facility​ will serve adult cancer patients who travel to Baptist Health, Mayo Clinic, St. Vincent's Healthcare, UF Health, Ackerman Proton Therapy and other healthcare facilities in Northeast Florida. The cancer center at St. Vincent's Medical Center is named for Mrs. Terry.  

    PHOTOS: Mrs. Terry is pictured in the large image, and Kellie Ann in the smaller photo.

  • This year's Coaches vs. Cancer Champion Award recipient is Coach Bill Self

    University of Kansas head basketball Coach Bill Self was presented with the Coaches vs. Cancer Champion Award during the Final Four Weekend at the Guardians of the Game Awards Show in Phoenix, AZ.

    The prestigious national honor recognizes a college coach who has shown extraordinary leadership and a commitment to the American Cancer Society's mission of saving lives against cancer through fundraising, education, and promotional initiatives. 

    Coach Self has been an integral part of the Coaches vs. Cancer program since its inception in 1996. Making the fight against cancer his personal commitment, he's been instrumental in leading key successful fundraising events at the University of Kansas, including the Coaches vs. Cancer Kansas City Tip-Off which has raised nearly $800,000 in 10 years, and the 3-Point Challenge (formerly 3-Point Attack) which has raised more than $650,000 over 12 years. Coach Self is always willing to mobilize other coaches and their networks to help raise funds and awareness for the life-saving work of the Society.

    In addition to spearheading his own efforts, Coach Self has continuously supported Coaches vs. Cancer signature campaigns, including the annual Suits And Sneakers™ Awareness Week, a nationwide event in which coaches wear sneakers with their game attire to raise awareness about the importance that nutrition and physical activity play in reducing personal cancer risk.

    "I'm honored to receive this prestigious award," said Self. "I have always supported Coaches vs. Cancer since it started with Norm Stewart, and believe that men's basketball is a great platform to create awareness for the disease. Everyone knows someone that has been affected by cancer, and hopefully through this effort we can get closer to finding more effective screening tools and better treatment options."

    The Champion Award was instituted in 1996, with former Missouri Coach Norm Stewart receiving the inaugural honor. Since that time, the award has been presented to head coaches nationally including Jim Boeheim (Syracuse); Denny Crum (Louisville); Roy Williams (then at Kansas, now at North Carolina); Riley Wallace (Hawaii); Fran Dunphy (then at Pennsylvania and now at Temple); Gary Williams (Maryland); Mark Few (Gonzaga); Mike Brey (Notre Dame); Bruce Weber (then at Illinois, now at Kansas State); Jim Calhoun (Connecticut); Tom Izzo (Michigan State); Oliver Purnell (DePaul); Paul Hewitt (Georgia Tech); Lon Kruger (Oklahoma); Bo Ryan (Wisconsin); Steve Lavin (St. John's University); Fran McCaffery (Iowa); and Frank Martin (South Carolina).

  • Coaches vs. Cancer takes center stage during Final Four weekend in Phoenix

    The weekend of the NCAA Final Four in Phoenix was a huge one for Coaches vs. Cancer, with many events being held to help raise money and support for our mission. Be sure to follow Coaches vs. Cancer on Facebook and Twitter @CoachesvsCancer.

    Here is a rundown of events:​ 

    March 31, 1:15 p.m . ET: INFINITI Hardwood Heroes Cancer Survivor Basketball Game
    Two teams of cancer survivors ages 18-45 competed in a special basketball game the morning before the Final Four to raise funds and awareness in the fight against cancer. Coached by NCAA legends, the game was a result of a unique partnership with Infiniti, NCAA®, and our Coaches vs. Cancer program. Portions of the game were included in CBS TV's coverage of the Final Four weekend and it was streamed on Facebook Live. Learn more here​​ and don't miss this promotional video.

    March 31, 5 – 7 p.m.: Coaches vs. Cancer VIP Reception
    An exclusive, invitation-only reception offered coaches, sponsors, donors, and community influencers an opportunity to network and meet with Society leadership and other coaches, and hear powerful testimony from one of the INFINITI Hardwood Heroes cancer survivors. CEO Gary Reedy and Society Board Chair Arnold Baskies, MD, both spoke.

    March 31 – April 3: Radio Row
    Coaches vs. Cancer coaches were interviewed by CBS Sports Radio, Westwood One, and approximately 20 major market radio stations. The radio hosts and coaches asked listeners to support CvC by making a donation online, via text, or phone.

    March 31 – April 2: Filming of promotional spots
    We filmed special messages with coaches, including cancer control messages, congratulatory messages to CvC award winners, and CvC 25th anniversary promo spots. These videos will help us stockpile assets we can use throughout the year.

    April 1: Coaches vs. Cancer Council Meeting
    This annual meeting of the CvC Council provided the opportunity for members to guide, enhance, and expand the CvC program. The council is charged with helping to identify potential major donors and sponsors to support the Society's mission. In addition, they serve as spokespersons for national events, support cancer education and awareness activities, and encourage fellow coaches and colleagues to participate. The council meeting included recognition, highlights from the year, and new fundraising initiatives for consideration.

    April 1: Coaches vs. Cancer Fight Cancer in Style Luncheon
    A special luncheon was held for Coaches vs. Cancer partners and their guests to offer networking opportunities ​​and an exciting presentation to further engage these powerful women in cancer control opportunities in their communities and around the country. Sharon Byers, chief development and marketing officer, and Scarlott Mueller, past Board chair, addressed the group.

  • The Final Four is set: Make your next picks by 5:55 p.m. ET Saturday, April 1

    We now know the Final Four  teams in this year's NCAA Men's College Basketball Tournament, leaving you two picks to make before 5:55 p.m. ET this Saturday, April 1. Tip off for the South Carolina vs. Gonzaga game is 6:09 p.m. ET, and the Oregon vs. North Carolina.game begins at 8:49 p.m. ET -- both this coming Saturday in Phoenix.​

    For every correct pick, INFINITI will make a donation to Coaches vs. Cancer, up to $700,000, and you'll be entered to win a trip to the 2018 Final Four®! Since 2011, this INFINITI partnership has resulted in more than $4 million in donations to Coaches vs. Cancer.

    This is free and requires just a quick registration. It doesn't matter if you didn't make any previous picks.

    The two winners of Saturday's games will play in the championship game, scheduled for 8:55 p.m. ET on Monday, April 3.

    We're asking every volunteer to help spread the word to your friends, family, and fellow volunteers through your own social media networks. When you make your selections, choose the option to share it on Facebook or Twitter. 

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