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Atlanta staff join Gary for a walk-break on Fit2BeCancerFree day!

Our CEO Gary Reedy and other CEOs across the country participated in our first ever CEOs fitness challenge – Fit2BeCancerFree – on April 19​​.​ One of the activities included an outdoor walk-break with Gary for staff in Atlanta. 

CEOs Against Cancer chapter members were invited to participate in a 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

Staff were encouraged to join in on the fun and track their steps for the day and see if they could beat any of our leaders on the leaderboard. Taking the steps instead of an elevator or escalator, blocking off time on your calendar for an afternoon walking break, or take a walking meeting are all good tips for incorporating physical activity into your work day. And, don’t forget to log your activity daily on the RedBrick Health portal.

Exercising pays!

Through our Healthy You staff wellness program​, you can earn up to $300 each year ($75 each quarter) by being active and logging your activity points. The RedBrick Health portal provides easy access to expert guidance and support, including health coaching, online programs, wellness challenges, and numerous ways to earn points towards our quarterly bonus.

Learn more about Fit2BeCancerFree

Learn more about the new CEOs fitness challenge by reading our press release on cancer.org.

  • 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. 

  • Considering a purchase on Amazon? Today is the day to do it!

    Today only – until 8:59 p.m. ET – the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 5% of the purchase price of your eligible AmazonSmile purchases, rather than the usual 0.5%.

    Hopefully you've already signed up for AmazonSmile and selected the American Cancer Society as your charity of choice. But, if you have not, simply visit smile.amazon.com now and select ACS as the beneficiary. 

    It is free of charge. You just have to remember to go to smile.amazon.com when you shop, rather than amazon.com.

    AmazonSmile is not available through the Amazon app.

    Learn more here.


  • March Madness is here! Choose your first bracket and help spread the word about this fun, no-cost way to support our mission

    ​March Madness kicked off on March 12 with the start of the 2017 NCAA Men's College Basketball Tournament. This year, once again, Coaches vs. Cancer® is teaming up with Infiniti to raise money for the American Cancer Society.

    You can show your support for Coaches vs. Cancer® by entering each of the six CBS Sports Round by Round Brackets. For every correct pick, INFINITI will make a donation to Coaches vs. Cancer, up to $700,00, and you'll be entered to win a trip to the 2018 Final Four®!

    You can submit a new bracket every round so don't worry about those bracket busting upsets, just make your picks for the next round.

    Since 2011, this INFINITI partnership has resulted in more than $4 million in donations to Coaches vs. Cancer.

    Here are the rules.

    We are asking you to complete a bracket each week and to help spread the word to your friends, family, and fellow volunteers through your own social media networks.

    The First Round closes at 11 a.m. ET this Thursday, March 16, so act soon!

    Deadlines to complete your bracket for each round are as follows:

    • First Round – 11:00 a.m. ET on Thursday, March 16, 2017

    • Second Round – 11:55 a.m. ET on Saturday, March 18, 2017

    • Sweet Sixteen – 6:55 p.m. ET on Thursday, March 23, 2017

    • Elite Eight – 4:25 p.m. ET on Saturday, March 25, 2017

    • Final Four - Final Four, Saturday, April 1, 5:55 p.m. ET

    • Championship, Monday, April 3, 8:55 p.m. ET

    • Championship – 5:55 p.m. ET Saturday, April 1, 2017 

    Sign up for the bracket challenge today​ and don't forget to make your bracket selections each week. Share the Infiniti Round by Round Bracket Challenge on your social media channels, using #InfinitiRbR and @CoachesvsCancer.

    Example social media messages:

    • Help Infiniti and coaches fight cancer through Coaches vs. Cancer. Create your bracket today. http://cbsprt.co/1lWLHbZ

    • A bracket where everybody wins – sign up today. http://cbsprt.co/1lWLHbZ

    • Fill out your @marchmadness bracket and help @infinitiusa support Coaches vs. Cancer. http://cbsprt.co/1lWLHbZ

    • 6 Rounds. 6 Chances to Win. Help Coaches Fight Cancer. For every correct pick on your NCAA® March Madness bracket, help Infiniti support Coaches vs. Cancer®. Plus, a chance to win a trip to the 2018 NCAA® Final Four. http://cbsprt.co/1lWLHbZ

    • No more busted NCAA® March Madness Brackets. Pick the winners round by round & help Infiniti support Coaches vs. Cancer®. Plus, a chance to win a trip to the 2018 NCAA® Final Four. http://cbsprt.co/1lWLHbZ

    • There are more chances to win at every round with the Infiniti Round by Round Bracket Challenge! http://cbsprt.co/1lWLHbZ

    Cancer survivor teams, led by legendary coaches, will face off before the NCAA Final Four® tournament

    On March 31 at 1 p.m. ET, INFINITI will host the 2nd Annual Hardwood Heroes game at University of Phoenix Stadium as part of the 2017 NCAA® Men's Final Four® Weekend. This year's team is comprised of tough, inspiring cancer survivors who'll face a team of returning 2016 survivors. Each possesses #Unbustable will and spirit and are all playing to raise money and awareness to defeat cancer.

    This game returns for a second year as a part of INFINITI's long-standing partnership with Coaches vs. Cancer®, the National Association of Basketball Coaches (NABC), and the NCAA.

    The Hardwood Heroes teams are led by four NCAA coaches with impressive winning backgrounds. Team Harrick, led by returning Coach Jim Harrick and Assistant Coach Doug Gottlieb, is made up of returning Hardwood Heroes players, including Mike Thompson (Austin), Harrison Guiol (San Antonio), Scott Odom (Fort Worth), Walter Gordy (Houston), Christina Davis (Houston), Iram Leon (Austin) and Lexi Stephens (Houston).

    Team Ryan, led by Coach Bo Ryan and Assistant Coach Miles Simon, will have all new Hardwood Heroes players, including Lena Spotleson (Phoenix), Kristina Anderson (Scottsdale), Melissa Kovalesky (Phoenix), Oscar Barragan (Phoenix), Jared Ornoski (Phoenix), Devon Hinton (Dallas) and J. Dee Marinko (Oklahoma City).

    "These survivors have proven that they are unstoppable, and each player has a story of courage and strength in winning their own battle against cancer," said Allyson Witherspoon, director of marketing communications and media, INFINITI USA. "We had the opportunity to capture their unique stories and behind-the-scenes moments that will air throughout March Madness® and the Final Four®."

    In support of this initiative, CBS Sports and Turner Sports will capture footage at the Hardwood Heroes team practices and game during their coverage of Final Four weekend. Highlights will air between the two Final Four semifinal games on Saturday, April 1, and prior to tip-off on Championship Monday on CBS.

    Learn more about INFINITI's fight against cancer and watch the Hardwood Heroes players tell their stories.

  • Society honors individuals for outstanding contributions to our Planned Giving program

    Jay Kalisky of West Bloomfield, Mich., and Martin Shenkman of Fort Lee, N.J., were honored with the American Cancer Society's 2016 National Professional Advisor of the Year Award at the Individual Giving Conference held in Atlanta on February 28 – March 2. ​

    The National Professional Advisor of the Year Award was established to recognize estate planners, trust officers, and financial and wealth managers who encourage and present philanthropic opportunities to clients who are planning their estates and intend to support the American Cancer Society.

    Michael Sontag of Nashville, Tenn., was presented with the Legacy Award by the Nationwide Gift Planning Advisory Council. That award recognizes professional advisors who have supported the Society's mission through their client charitable inclusions in their estate plans throughout their career. 

    Kalisky, who is a new National Professional Advisor Network (NPAN) advisor, lost his mother to non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in 1977. Since 1983, he has been a Society volunteer, serving first as the organization's chapter president in Southfield and Farmington Hills, Mich., until 1988. He has participated in Making Strides Against Breast Cancer and the Relay for Life of West Bloomfield, individually raising more than $34,400 last year. In 2015, he received the Alex Graham Award, presented to the participant who most exemplifies the virtues and spirit of Relay for Life. Kalisky is a lead volunteer of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, and has designated ACS CAN in his estate plans.

    Shenkman is an attorney in private practice in Fort Lee, N.J., and New York City, concentrating on estate and tax planning and estate administration. A well-known speaker and accomplished author in the estate planning arena, he is one of the Society's NPAN leaders and planned giving champions. In 2016 he toured the U.S., working closely with the Society, offering free professional advisor/attorney CLE credited seminars and securing Wilmington Trust as a sponsor.

    Sontag, winner of the Legacy Award, credits the work of the Society for saving the life of his daughter more than 20 years ago when she was diagnosed with leukemia. In his work with clients, Sontag's conversation always includes the Society, and over the course of the years he has documented 101 gifts totaling more than $16 million to move the Society's mission forward. He is a longtime volunteer participating in fundraising events and serving as an ambassador for the organization.​

    Planned gifts account for more than 20% the Society's income each year. It is our second leading source of income, truly funding the future of the organization. Charitable estate planning is a way for donors to continue their support to organizations that have had an impact on their lives. This type of giving also can have important benefits for the donor, such as reducing their income and estate taxes.

    PHOTOS: Pictured in the top photo with our CEO Gary Reedy are Martin Shenkman, left, and Jay Kalisky, right. Michael Sontag is pictured in the smaller image.