The National Hemophilia Foundation’s (NHF) It’s Time for a Cure fundraising campaign was concluded on April 29, 2008, with a program and luncheon at the Doubletree Hotel in Fort Lee, New Jersey. The luncheon was held to celebrate the success of the It’s Time for a Cure campaign, recognize the donors who made it possible and hear from the researchers who benefited from their generosity.
Howard Balsam, CPA, NHF Interim CEO, thanked the donors for providing hope. “We give our thanks to our major benefactors who spoke with their heart and opened their wallets to advance this program,” he said. “You have provided hope that maybe today or tomorrow there will be a breakthrough that will make life better for people with bleeding disorders.”
The campaign compelled 3,000 donors—individuals, chapters and corporations—to contribute more than $9 million to support vital research on bleeding disorders. The Career Development Awards target experienced investigators, allowing them to pursue their areas of interest, often establishing their own laboratories in the process and gaining the experience they need to pursue government-funded grants. During the campaign, 20 Career Development Awards were conferred. In fact, the campaign was so successful that it triggered the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute to co-sponsor grants with NHF. The NHF/NHLBI grants have since provided an additional $9 million to support eight researchers.
Craig Kessler, MD, of Georgetown University and chair of NHF’s Medical and Scientific Advisory Council (MASAC), gave an overview of the CDA awards and how the research benefits not only the researchers but the bleeding disorders community as well. “The awards support young scientists at institutions with track records of success,” he said. “Their research is translatable to improved care for people with bleeding disorders.” The funding is so crucial that it can make or break a career, he said. It offers the protection researchers need to stay in the field of hematology.
Dr. Kessler introduced the three researchers who spoke--past and present Career Development Award recipients--Hengjun Chao, MD, former CDA recipient and current NHLBI/NHF Fellow, of the Mount Sinai School of Medicine; Paul E. Monahan, MD, former CDA recipient, of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; and Gary Gilbert, MD, current NHLBI/NHF Fellow at the Harvard Medical School.
Afterward, the following awards were presented to the major donors to the It’s Time for a Cure Campaign:
Principal Benefactor Award
Major Benefactor Award
- American Red Cross
- Bayer HealthCare
- Baxter Healthcare Corporation
- Donald E. Colburn and American Homecare Federation, Inc.
- CSL Behring
- Hemophilia of Georgia
- Delaware Valley Chapter of NHF
- Mary Child Smoot—In Loving Memory of Kevin M. Child
- Rhoda and Michael Bender
- Shari and Stephen Bender
Raymond W. Stanhope, NHF Board Chair, concluded the program by offering thanks and his own personal insight. “How exciting for me, living with hemophilia for 52 years, to see the work going on today with real possibilities of providing real treatment in the future.”
A new fundraising campaign will be announced at NHF’s Leadership Weekend, June 13-15, 2008.