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Volunteer-driven Dance Against Cancer in NYC raises $433,000

On Monday evening, May 7, 770 guests attended the eighth annual Dance Against Cancer in New York City. The gala benefit brought together artists from leading dance companies from New York City and beyond for a night of performances and world premieres.

For the very first time, Dance Against Cancer was held at the Alice Tully Hall at the iconic Lincoln Center. It was previously held at AXA Equitable Center, but moved to Lincoln Center to accommodate a larger audience. The event has raised more than $433,000 to date, bringing its grand total to more than $1.5 million.

This year's lineup included performances by members of New York City Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Paul Taylor Dance Company, BalletX, Jacob Jonas Dance Company, Noche Flamenca, NYC's Broadway community, tapper Ayodele Casel, ballroom and more – with a special closing number performed by students from LaGuardia High School (the school made famous by the film "Fame"). The evening was emceed by Nev Schulman, host of MTV's "Catfish".

Pre-event press included coverage on, and

Dance Against Cancer was founded in 2010 by Erin Fogarty, director of programming at Manhattan Youth Ballet, and Daniel Ulbricht, principal dancer at New York City Ballet. 

You can learn more about Dance Against Cancer in this recent story on Society Source.

PHOTO: Pictured in the smaller image, from left, Dan Ulbricht, Erin Fogarty, Kris Kim, regional executive vice president, Northeast Region; and Nev Schulman. 

  • Shopping on Amazon for Father's Day? Make sure your purchase benefits the Society

    If you intend to shop for the dad in your life on Amazon, please make sure to enter through the Society's AmazonSmile page. Father's Day is Sunday, June 17!

    When you sign up for AmazonSmile and choose the American Cancer Society as the beneficiary, one half of one percent of what you spend – every time you spend –  will be donated to ACS by Amazon. It may not sound like a lot – but the more people we have doing this, the more we can raise, and it costs shoppers nothing.

    How it works
    Go to and choose the American Cancer Society as your charity of choice, or go straight to the Society's page and bookmark it. You can use your existing Amazon account and you will find all the same products and prices as on Please note that recurring subscribe-and-save purchases and subscription renewals are not currently eligible for AmazonSmile.

    Once you choose American Cancer Society, every time you come back to, you will see this wording at the top of the page: "Supporting American Cancer Society, Inc."  To learn more, read Amazon's Q&A about AmazonSmile

    The key is remembering to go to or the Society's page, instead of It takes a little self-discipline!

    Please share this information with your friends, family members, and colleagues. You'll find social media messages below, and here is a video you can share.

    Suggested social media posts for AmazonSmile

    • Give back to the American Cancer Society when you shop this Father's Day. Visit, select the American Cancer Society as your charity of choice, and the Society will receive 0.5% of your eligible purchases to support life-saving cancer programs. It's so easy and it really helps! 
    • Shopping on Amazon this Father's Day? Get the same great selection and prices at and the Amazon Foundation will donate 0.5% of your eligible purchases to the American Cancer Society with no cost to you!  Thank you for supporting the fight against cancer while you shop.
    • This Father's Day, help support the fight against cancer while you shop on Amazon. Just visit  first and select the American Cancer Society as your charity of choice to receive 0.5% on every eligible purchase. It adds up fast and really helps families battling cancer. Thank you!

  • New rolling event cycle means new Relay sites will launch 6-8 weeks after the event ends

    The American Cancer Society is moving to a Relay For Life rolling event cycle beginning in 2018. Approximately 6-8 weeks after a Relay For Life event is over, the website for next year's event automatically will be launched. While this rollover is automatic, we want to make sure it fits the needs of that community, and therefore the launch of the site can be changed if necessary.

    For many years, we have had a fundraising cycle that ran from September to August. We have heard from volunteers and staff that this standardized timing of when the websites go live has limited how communities fundraise. This new rolling events cycle will allow communities to work on a fundraising and event cycle that is best for them.

    We have moved away from a full refresh of sites every year, opting instead for bi-weekly releases of new content and functionality. When new sites go live, they will launch with the newest version.

    Here's how this new cycle will benefit both volunteers and staff:

    • Allow volunteers to get a jump on fundraising, especially for those events that happen early in a calendar year.
    • Emphasize fundraising prior to and during the Relay For Life event, not afterward. This will help take pressure off volunteers and staff for post-event fundraising.
    • Create excitement for the following year's event by providing an opportunity for events to immediately work on current participant and donor retention while excitement for the current year's event is still top of mind.
    • Focus on the customer, with launch/end dates within volunteers' suggested timeframe. Communities will have an opportunity to adjust their site launch date based on their unique needs and fundraising timeline.
    • Present added value to campus events, allowing for registration to begin when school begins.
    • Provide the local Event Leadership Team (ELT) an opportunity to actively maintain their existing website cycle, or adjust based on individual event, ELT, and team needs.

  • Another big win for Michigan women's softball team - $1M raised to help us fight breast cancer

    The University of Michigan NCAA Wolverines softball team is celebrating a special milestone: its 9th annual clinic for softball aficionados will push its cumulative fundraising for Making Strides Against Breast Cancer over $1 million!  

    In a thank-you video, our CEO Gary Reedy thanked the team and its coach, Carol Hutchins, the winningest head softball coach in NCAA history. "You've taught your team what it means to win off the field. Congratulations on your "#MarchThruAMillion," Gary said.

    At the popular Michigan Softball Academy, participants (dressed in pink, of course) rotate through softball training stations run by the players, learning how to run bases, field balls, hit, and even put on a proper home-run celebration

    This year's one-day clinic for adults is scheduled for May 3. You can visit its fundraising site here. Academy participants pay a non-refundable $125 registration fee, which covers admission to the Academy and to a social mixer and silent auction. ESPN’s Holly Rowe is serving as this year’s honorary chair.

    Michigan softball will be the first women's collegiate team to surpass $1 million raised for ACS. 

    The first academy was held in 2010, with about 60 participants. Last year's event attracted more than 300 people. Like most Americans, many of the players and clinic attendees have been affected by breast cancer in some way. 

    Hutchins is in her 35th softball season at Michigan. The team has never had a losing season. After winning her 1,000th game, Hutchins told a reporter that her greatest pride did not come from the 1,000 wins, but from her ability to influence how her players look at life -  "to get them to work together and to meet standards, to show them they can lead as women."

  • Parkland Relay underscores how we help build community

    Joe Gillette from Brooklyn, NY,  co-lead of the Nationwide Relay Volunteer Leadership Team, delivered 183 luminaria to the Relay For Life of Parkland and Coral Springs, Florida, held April 13 at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School where a Feb. 14 mass shooting resulted in 17 deaths.

    Joe flew down the Friday of the event, and he did a little more fundraising on the plane. "When I got on the plane we had raised $1,500. When I got off the plane it was up to $1,700," he said. "It was not until later on in the evening when I realized the remarkable significance of the number 17 and the incredible aura of having settled on the number." Four members of the Parkland-Coral Springs community were among the 17 victims.

    Joe spoke at the Relay: "Though I flew down from Brooklyn this afternoon, tonight I am from Texas, Michigan, Arizona, California, and dozens of other communities around the country that showed that Relay cares. Each bag was inspired by your strength and a desire to show that no matter where we walk, we are one family, one community."

    Glenn Callihan, vice president, Regional Community Development, Southeast Region, attended the Relay, as well, and in this video he explains how the Parkland Relay incorporated the tragedy into the event in an inspirational way. (Fast foward to 2 minutes 47 seconds in.)

    The Relay's theme was changed to 'Survivors Standing Strong Together" after the shooting.

    The traditional Survivors Lap kicked off the event. Among the survivors holding the banner was the police officer who apprehended the shooter. He is a cancer survivor. (He is pictured above the white on the Relay banner in the photo above.) 

    Next, all first responders were invited to walk a lap. "They represented virtually every agency in Broward County. They came out in force and felt appreciated," Glenn said. "If you talk about building a community and providing a platform for a community to unite, the Parkland Relay is an example of that."

    Glenn also noted that Relay has built activists. Long before the shooting, students at the school had participated in 'Walk Out on Cancer" to raise awareness and funds. "This school really embraced this activity, so when tragedy struck it wasn't a surprise to us they used advocacy efforts to make their voices heard" across the nation on gun control.

    Glenn added: "When I left Parkland, I kept thinking how lucky I was to be there to see the love and compassion of those volunteers and staff. And I left there knowing that at the American Cancer Society we aren't just attacking cancer at every angle, we are building communities and creating activists and truly having an impact on society as a whole."

    PHOTO: Pictured on the left in the smaller Relay image is high school senior Emma Gonzalez, who helped lead the call for tougher gun control laws after the mass shooting.

  • Relay For Life team in small Missouri town achieves the $1 million fundraising mark!

    A Relay For Life team's annual Spring Fling fundraiser in Marion County, Missouri, is always a popular community event, but this year was special. This was the year the 18-year-old Flower Children team hit the $1 million fundraising mark, generating a lot of local media coverage.

    There to express the American Cancer Society's appreciation was Mike Neal, senior executive vice presidentField Operations, along with several staff members from the North Region.

    Mike spoke briefly prior to the live auction, and he introduced Rhonda Dodd, who inspired the audience by talking about her fight against cancer and her experience as a guest at our Hope Lodge facility in St. Louis.

    This year's team Spring Fling fundraiser in Palmyra, MO, a town of 3,600 people, raised a record $81,000, and put The Flower Children over the $1 million mark, as they had hoped it would. Students with a computer and spreadsheet were tracking dollars raised that evening, and when the fundraising hit the $1 million mark, proceedings stopped briefly for a celebration with confetti and balloons. 

    About 400 Marion County residents attended the April 21 event, paying $25 per ticket. The night's activities included dinner, raffles, and silent and live auctions, as well as a chance for those in attendance to "Bet on a Cure" and have some "Vegas Style" fun.

    Items ranged from great tickets to sporting events such as NASCAR, Chiefs, Cardinals, Royals, and MU Tigers to certificates for hotel packages and Branson shows.  Auction items also included household necessities, gift certificates for meals and services, auto care products, as well as, furniture and hand-crafted items and unique, one of a kind wood-working creations.  

    A special item this year was a beautiful handcrafted cedar table with benches and chairs donated by Dr. Bill and Sharon Wommack in honor of Troy Disselhorst. A group of family and friends who have been supporting Troy in his fight against cancer surprised him by purchasing the table for $9,800 in his honor, and then donating it back to the auction, where it raised an additional $4,000. The top bidder gave the set to Troy and his wife, Emily, who were in attendance.

    A unique feature at this year's Spring Fling was the chance to win a .53 carat diamond pendant valued at $2,750. Individuals could purchase a raffle cup filled with a drink donated by El Nopal Mexican Restaurant. The winner donated the necklace back and it was auctioned again, raising additional money.

    “We say all the time that volunteers are the heart of what we do – and the accomplishments of this one team in a town so small are proof that our success centers around having the right advocates in place. It is incredible to see what an inspired group of people can really accomplish," said April Dzubic, executive director, Missouri Area.

    The Flower Children were recognized as the top fundraising team in Missouri and #39 in the nation in 2017. 

    All attendees were invited to attend the 22nd annual Relay For Life of Marion County event from 4 p.m. until midnight on June 1 at Flower City Park in Palmyra. 

    TOP PHOTO: From left, Mike Neal, senior executive VP, Field Operations; Kathryn McDaniel, senior community development manager; D’Arcy Crane, senior manager, Community Development; April Dzubic, executive director, Missouri Area; Dana Blasé, Health Systems manager, hospitals.  Kathryn is the staff partner.

  • Pampered Chef's "Help Whip Cancer" campaign runs the month of May

    For the 19th consecutive year, Pampered Chef consultants and customers are fighting breast cancer this May with its "Help Whip Cancer" campaign.  

    Beginning May 1 and running through May 31, Pampered Chef will donate $1 from the sale of every Pink Whipped Cream Maker, Pink & White Twixit! Clips, 2-Cup Prep Bowl Set, Mini Skinny Scraper, Pink Tomato Knife, Pink Handy Scraper, Help Whip Cancer Scraper, and Mix 'n Chop. 

    Dollars raised from this campaign will support our breast cancer education, prevention, and early detection programs. Learn more here.

    Twice a year - May and October - Pampered Chef offers specific products to help raise breast cancer awareness. 

    "We're grateful for everything Pampered Chef, its consultants, and customers have done, and continue to do, for those impacted by breast cancer.  Help Whip Cancer not only raises much needed dollars for the American Cancer Society, it shines a light on the importance of prevention and early detection,"  said Lynda Chott, vice president, Distinguished Partners.

    Our partnership with Pampered Chef has raised more than $12 million in support of our mission. Pampered Chef began its "Help Whip Cancer" campaign in May 2000. To increase its impact, it added the October campaign in 2008. 

    More about Pampered Chef

    Pampered Chef, founded in 1980 by Doris Christopher and now part of the Berkshire Hathaway family of businesses, is a premier direct seller of high-quality kitchen tools. Pampered Chef's sales force of Independent Pampered Chef consultants offer multipurpose kitchen tools, demonstrate easy food preparation techniques, and share recipes that help people entertain with style and ease.

  • Major League Lacrosse players and coaches to compete for title of "Real Man of MLL"

    Twenty-eight players and coaches in Major League Lacrosse (MLL) will compete in the MLL Pink Challenge, a variation of our national fundraising program, Real Men Wear Pink.

    Last season, ACS was named the first official league-wide charity of choice by MLL, and the inaugural MLL Pink Challenge raised nearly $50,000. Atlanta Blaze All-Star Scott Ratliff (pictured in the smaller image) was named the Real Man of MLL after raising over $8,000 through his personal campaign. Watch this promotional video featuring Ratliff.

    "We feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to work with the American Cancer Society and make an impact in the fight against this horrible disease," said MLL Commissioner Alexander Brown. "I am so proud of the 28 men who have volunteered for the MLL Pink Challenge. We are grateful to have players in our league who can compete at the highest level while also demonstrating outstanding quality of character off the field." 

    Fans can donate through the player of their choice by visiting, the specialty website designed by Pledge It for the MLL Pink Challenge. Donors can make a flat donation or can pledge a donation that is based on team goals scored from May 1 through June 3. The player who raises the most by June 3 will be named the Real Man of MLL.  

    Mother's Day Weekend is Pink Weekend, with each of the four home teams hosting a Pink Out Game that week. Fans are encouraged to wear pink to the games in Florida, Ohio, Boston, and Denver, and each team will have promotions throughout the game. Additionally, the Dallas Rattlers will host a Pink Out Game on May 19 and the Atlanta Blaze and Chesapeake Bayhawks will each host one on June 2.   

    Participating in the campaign this season are: Scott Ratliff, Davey Emala, Justin Turri, Scott Bieda, Joe Nardella, Sean Quirk, Matt Rambo, Mike Chanenchuk, Brian Phipps, Mark Glicini, Luke Duprey, Jake Froccaro, Ben Williams, John Maloney, Drew Simoneau, John Galloway, Chris Bocklet, Larken Kemp, Jack Kelly, Nick Tintle, Michael Simon, Steven Brooks, Austin Kaut, Sergio Salcido, Rob Pannell, Casey Dowd, Steven Waldeck, and Matt McMahon.

    The traditional Real Men Wear Pink program was created to give men a greater presence in the fight against breast cancer. The campaign takes place in over 200 communities, mostly during the month of October. Real Men Wear Pink features a group of dedicated and distinguished community leaders who are determined to help save lives from breast cancer by committing to raise awareness and funds.

    "We are so grateful to have the support of Major League Lacrosse," said Sharon Byers, our chief development and marketing officer. "Our partnership continues to mobilize lacrosse fans across the country to fight breast cancer, and we hope everyone will support the players through the Real Men Wear Pink Challenge." 

    About Major League Lacrosse

    Headquartered in Boston, the Major League Lacrosse is the premier professional outdoor lacrosse league. It was founded by Jake Steinfeld in 2001. The league is made up of nine teams: The Atlanta Blaze, Boston Cannons, Charlotte Hounds, Chesapeake Bayhawks, Dallas Rattlers, Denver Outlaws, Florida Launch, New York Lizards and Ohio Machine.

  • ACS staffer, survivor featured on Alex and Ani website

    ​Our very own senior development manager for Distinguished Events, Lainie Jones, was invited to write a guest blog for the Alex and Ani website. In an essay titled "The Strength to Survive: A Story of Fortitude," Lainie shares her story of survivorship and discusses her work with the American Cancer Society. 

    Lainie, who works in the Northeast Region, writes: "I've had five primary cancers. I recently finished chemotherapy for the fourth time and I've lost my hair three times."

    Her motto is: Celebrate today. "Every day is a gift, and I celebrate from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to sleep. I won't let cancer define who I am. Instead, it empowers me."

    The American Cancer Society has been partnering with Alex and Ani through their Charity By Design collection since 2012. The company has generated more than $1 million in donations for our mission. Currently, Alex and Ani is donating 20 percent of the purchase of its $32 Celebrate Today Charm Bangle to the Society.

    On average, the Alex and Ani website receives 200,000 visitors per month.

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