Norwalk, CT — May 27, 2015 — On May 26, 2015, over 400 Chicago area patients, patient families, clinicians, researchers, businesses and supporters attended the 14th Annual Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Chicago Awards Dinner and raised over $1,000,000 to fuel transformative cancer research and accelerate a cure NOW.
“We are extremely grateful to our generous Chicago supporters, many of whom have been with the MMRF since the event’s inception. Adding to their steadfast and continuous patronage is a vibrant force of new and young professional constituents whom we are most fortunate to have joining us in our mission. This level of funding allows us to rapidly advance cutting-edge research and accelerate the most promising, innovative and effective new therapies for patients in partnership with leading researchers and clinicians in institutions and companies worldwide,” said Walter M. Capone, Chief Executive Officer and President of the MMRF.
The MMRF is a leading cancer research foundation that is continuously developing new models and innovative means for accelerating the next generation of myeloma treatments as quickly as possible. The foundation is currently spearheading the world’s first and only open access data platform in multiple myeloma, built on the landmark CoMMpass℠ study, which will empower patients with information to make decisions about their individual medical choices, and enable researchers and others to make faster treatment discoveries for this incurable blood cancer.
The MMRF was proud to honor Actress, Director, Producer, Writer and MMRF Honorary Board Member, Bonnie Hunt with the Spirit of Hope Award. This award is presented annually to a patient, caregiver or individual who exemplifies the true spirit of hope – one who generously advocates for the benefit of others, works tirelessly to help cancer patients, and inspires hope through their perseverance. Academy Award-Winning Actress Marlee Matlin, whose father was a multiple myeloma patient, gave the evening’s keynote address. Also joining the evening’s honorees were Actor, Producer and Writer, Don Lake as the evening’s Master of Ceremonies and Jill Pflaum as the evening’s Patient Speaker.
“We are honored to partner with the MMRF to support patients and their families on this special evening, as the presenting industry sponsor. At Takeda Oncology, we strive to deliver novel medicines to patients with cancer worldwide through our commitment to science, breakthrough innovation and passion for improving the lives of patients,” Dixie-Lee Essletine, M.D., FRCPC, Vice President, Oncology Clinical research, Takeda.
About Multiple Myeloma
Multiple myeloma is, at this time, an incurable blood cancer. Although progress has been made in treating multiple myeloma, the five-year relative survival rate remains one of the lowest of all cancers. The MMRF has helped deliver seven new FDA-approved life-saving drugs in less than 12 years, a track record unparalleled in oncology. The MMRF has helped reimagine the research system that is now speeding success across all forms of cancer.
About the Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation
The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) was established in 1998 as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization by twin sisters Karen Andrews and Kathy Giusti, soon after Kathy’s diagnosis with multiple myeloma. The mission of the MMRF is to relentlessly pursue innovative means that accelerate the development of next-generation multiple myeloma treatments to extend the lives of patients and lead to a cure. As the world’s number-one private funder of multiple myeloma research, the MMRF has raised over $275 million since its inception and directs nearly 90% of its total budget to research and related programming. As a result, the MMRF receives an A+ rating by the American Institute of Philanthropy and a “Best in America” Seal of Excellence from the Independent Charities of America.