Pennsylvania’s First LadySusan Corbett, Honorary Chair of the Conference, shared her experience as the daughter of a breast cancer survivor in her keynote address. Thomas Frazier, M.D. and Mimi Barash Coppersmith were each presented with the Pink Ribbon Award for their contributions to the fight against breast cancer, and each spoke about why they are passionate about this battle. The big surprise of the day was the $100,000 research grant presentation to Dr. Craig Meyers.
Our Grassroots Partners were honored at our Evening Reception the evening before the Conference, and our Shining Light Award Winners, Rob Ziemba and Jon Jehrio,shared why they partnered up with the PBCC and how they turned their passion for hockey into a way to support the cause. Potamkin Award winner, Susan M. Domcheck, M.D., told attendees about the important research she has conducted at the Plenary Session the morning of the Conference.
On Thursday, November 3rd, I had the pleasure of meeting with Lauren Egenrieder, a senior at Bermudian Springs High School. She held a 5K race on October 8th at Lake Meade to benefit the PBCC.
As her senior class project, Lauren worked with her advisor Mr. Jared Nace (pictured right) to develop the event. Thanks to sponsorships, registrations, and donations, Lauren raised $4,400 for the PBCC!
Thanks Lauren for your hard work and congratulations on your success!
Newlyweds Jennifer Telesco & Matthew Loftus, Jr. who are both dedicated teachers in the Scranton area, felt their wedding day was made even more special because of their choice to make a donation to the PBCC in lieu of favors. “Matthew and I have had many family members, friends, and colleagues fight a courageous fight against breast cancer. We were honored to do something to join them in such an important fight,” said Jennifer.
Their gift helps the PBCC continue its work on behalf of women and their families with breast cancer. Thanks to Jennifer and Matthew for their generosity and best wishes for a lifetime of love and happiness! If you would like to make a donation to the PBCC in lieu of wedding, bridal shower or baby shower favors – or to celebrate or commemorate any other occasion such as an anniversary, birthday, or reunion – contact us for details. We will gladly provide you with information about our organization and may be able to provide you with giveaways for your guests.
HARRISBURG, Pa. – The PA Breast Cancer Coalition (PBCC) gave an additional $100,000 research grant to Dr. Craig Meyers and his team at Penn State College of Medicine today. The announcement came at the 2011 PA Breast Cancer Coalition Conference held at the Hilton Harrisburg attended by over 1,000 people. This grant marks the single-largest research contribution made by the PBCC in its 18-year history and it follows a 2007 PBCC Pennsylvania Income Tax Refund for Research grant of $35,000 to Dr. Meyers.
Through this PBCC funded research, Dr. Meyers discovered that adeno-associated virus type 2 (AAV2) kills breast cancer cells in every stage in the laboratory in tissue culture dishes. AAV2 is a nondisease-causing virus that kills human breast cancer cells and often infects humans. Preliminary research using AAV2 to treat breast cancer cells in a mouse model has also yielded promising results but needs further study.
“I’ve been working with this significant nondisease-causing virus that kills human breast cancer cells in the laboratory because we know that breast cancer has a complex structure and differing types,” said Dr. Craig Meyers, professor of microbiology and immunology at Penn State College of Medicine.
Referring to these exciting new findings as, “what, for decades, the medical community has worked towards and the rest of the world has been waiting for,” Pat Halpin-Murphy, president and founder of the PBCC said that her pioneering organization is thrilled to be part of Dr. Meyers’discovery of a virus that kills all stages and all types of breast cancer cells in the laboratory.
“Breast cancer survivors, their families, and all girls and women and those that care for them look forward to the final phase of this research–clinical trials with humans. While that final step may still be years away, it gives us hope that we will discover a cure so our daughters and granddaughters won’t have to. Dr. Meyers’ break-through is a real-world example that research is our best weapon in battling breast cancer,” added Halpin-Murphy.
Halpin-Murphy went on to say that “each day, 32 women in Pennsylvania are diagnosed with breast cancer and over 2,000 die every year from the devastating disease.”
“We are extremely grateful to the Coalition for their generous support of Dr. Meyers’ research,” said Richard J. Courtney, Ph.D., chair, Department of Microbiology and Immunology at Penn State College of Medicine. “The recent findings of his research group are very exciting; however, much additional research remains to be done. This grant will be instrumental in helping Dr. Meyers and his colleagues to further advance this highly promising breast cancer research ongoing within his laboratory.”
The PBCC established and oversees the Refunds for Breast Cancer Research program, which uses donations from Pennsylvanians to fund vital research grants across the state. State residents may contribute all or part of their state income tax refund to the Refunds for Research program to help find a cure. To date, Pennsylvanians have donated over $2.8 million with the average donation from taxpayers being $8. Thanks to the PBCC’s program, nearly 70 research grants have been awarded to outstanding Pennsylvania scientists.
The PBCC represents, supports and serves breast cancer survivors and their families in Pennsylvania through educational programming, legislative advocacy and breast cancer research grants. The PBCC is a statewide non-profit organization dedicated to finding a cure now…so our daughters and granddaughters won’t have to. For more information, visit www.PABreastCancer.org or call 800-377-8828.
Julie Rockey describes herself as a Type A personality, someone who is always on the go. Combine that with her love of organizing fun and interesting things to do and you get the Ta-Ta Trot, a fundraiser to benefit the PBCC! Julie was diagnosed with breast cancer in February 2010. She was 30 years old at the time and went for a routine ob/gyn exam. She was just checking to be sure everything was fine to get pregnant; a breast cancer diagnosis was the last thing she expected that day.
Her doctor did a breast exam, sent Julie for a mammogram, and within a day she learned that she had breast cancer. Julie was very open about what she was going through and was able to create a large support system with work, family and friends.
While she was going through chemo a friend who was planning a 5K walk/run approached her with the idea, offering Julie the option to select the nonprofit to benefit from it. He also introduced her to Cheryl Delsite, a breast cancer survivor and long-time PBCC volunteer. It was important to Julie that the money raised through the event would be used locally to help women in Pennsylvania. After talking with Cheryl, Julie decided that the PBCC would be the best organization to receive the funds.
Ta-Ta Trot was held in Sunbury, PA on July 9th and drew an astounding 655 walkers & runners who raised over $14,000! Everyone in the community is excited for next year and the goal is to increase to 1,000 participants! All the proceeds from the event benefitted the PBCC in memory of Marie Lamey, R.N., a breast cancer nurse at Geisinger Health System, where Julie is Senior Director of Operations. Many of the volunteers were Geisinger employees who wanted to honor Marie with their participation, and Dr. Victor Vogel, Director of the Geisinger Cancer Institute, spoke at the opening ceremony.
Julie completed her breast cancer treatment in June. She tells other women that she thinks of breast cancer as a life sentence, not a death sentence. She has learned to level out and take a deep breath once in a while. She decided from the first day that she would not let it bring her down. Now, because of having had breast cancer, she has hundreds of friends that she didn’t have before. And probably hundreds more next year after the Ta-Ta Trot!
Blue Ridge Country Club and Executive Woman’s Gold Associate hosted a successful golf event, organized by Glenda Dechowitz, on Tuesday, June 28 raising $3,200 for the PA Breast Cancer Coalition! Swing for Support took place at the Blue Ridge Country Club where golfers of all expertise came out to play 9 holes of golf followed by a dinner and prizes.
All of the funds raised by the event were donated directly to the PA Breast Cancer Coalition, which means the money remains in PA to help the 103,000 women living with breast cancer in the state.
We want to say a special thanks to the supporters who helped make Swing for Support possible:
Goodie Bags – Makin’ It Safe, LLC
Raffle Prizes Ann Ketchum – Golf Seat Cover
Dr. & Mrs. Peter Alagona- Wine Basket
Dr. & Mrs. Stephen Kreiner – Professional Teeth Whitening Kit
Event Committee – Marilyn Book, Anne Ketchum, Lynne King
Professional Services – Peter Mickelwright & Conrad Lickel
Thank you to everyone who participated and raised not only funds, but awareness, for the PA Breast Cancer Coalition!
For many of us, dodgeball is a distant memory confined to our gym class experiences. For Kim Wilke and her family who organized the Dodge4Cure Dodgeball Tournament, it is a great way to raise money for the PBCC to help in the fight against breast cancer – not to mention great exercise! The tournament raised $10,040 for the PBCC in its third year. Thanks to Kim, the entire Wilke family, and all those who participated and sponsored the event to make it such a smashing success!
This event is a great example of what can happen when one person takes the extra steps to turn something they love to do into something that does a lot of good for others. If you are inspired to follow Kim’s lead and turn your hobby into a fundraiser for the PBCC, contact Sarah at Sarah@PABreastCancer.org for information on how you can become a Grassroots Partner.
For more information on the Dodge4Cure event including future tournament information, click here.
Martin’s Potato Chips invited the PBCC to its factory for a behind the scenes look at how their delicious snacks are made. Earlier this month, they brought their special pink ribbon bags back for a Mother’s Day promotion. Check out the video for a snack sneak peek and see how Martin’s continues to Chip in for a Cure.
Through the sale of the special pink ribbon bags of its Kettle Cook’d Potato Chips, Martin’s has donated over $84,000 to the PBCC. For its generosity and commitment to breast cancer awareness, the company was recognized as a 2010 Pink Ribbon Award recipient at the 2010 PA Breast Cancer Coalition Annual Conference. Thanks to everyone at Martin’s for their continued support and for the tour!