Why We Give: ASCO Staff Members on Why They Support the Conquer Cancer Foundation


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Lynne Blasi

Doug Pyle

Aaron Tallent

Eileen Melnick

Jeannine Salamone (right) and Jacqueline Mazzilli (left)

Lynne Blasi, Director, Patient Education and Advocacy, ASCO

Why do you choose to support the Conquer Cancer Foundation?

I support the Conquer Cancer Foundation because of the tremendous impact it has across so many vital areas. From funding grants for young researchers with innovative ideas, helping to educate oncologists so they can stay current on new developments in care and treatment, to making sure patients and families around the world have access to accurate, oncologist-approved information, the Foundation covers all the bases. As a long-time donor, the Foundation is at the top of my list of organizations to support.

 

How does the Conquer Cancer Foundation support your work at ASCO? 

I oversee ASCO’s patient education and advocacy programs, and the Foundation’s ongoing, generous support of Cancer.Net, ASCO’s patient website, and our print patient education materials has made it possible to reach millions of people with lifesaving information and resources for support when they need it most. Thanks to the Foundation, we’ve been able to grow the patient education program and ensure that it continues to meet the needs of ASCO members and the patients we all serve.

Doug Pyle, Senior Director, International Affairs, ASCO

Why do you choose to support the Conquer Cancer Foundation?

I suppose for many of the same reasons that my work at ASCO means so much to me.  Like pretty much everyone, I’ve been touched personally by cancer.  My dad, who ironically was a hematologist/oncologist in Boston, died of a brain tumor when I was young.  My mom is a cancer survivor.  So for me it is a real privilege to work at ASCO, to have a chance to do my best each day to improve the lives of cancer patients around the world.  And for me to be able to support the Foundation in its work adds another dimension to this same privilege.

 

How does the Conquer Cancer Foundation support your work at ASCO?

The Foundation has been a pioneering supporter of ASCO’s international mission and remains crucial to achieving our goals. The International Development and Education Award (IDEA), which for 10 years has been helping young oncologists in low- to middle-income countries, has been supported by the Foundation from the beginning.  We are now seeing these “young” oncologists take leadership positions at ASCO and in their own national oncology societies. The Foundation’s Long-Term International Fellowship, started with my department, enables oncologists like these to study with a mentor in North America and “builds bridges” for research collaborations.  The Foundation also supports one of our newer programs, the International Cancer Corps, which enables ASCO member volunteers to help improve cancer care delivery at hospitals in developing countries.  I could go on.

Aaron Tallent, Manager, Policy Communications, ASCO

Why do you choose to support the Conquer Cancer Foundation?

I give to organizations based on my research of them and my belief that the money I donate will go towards combatting issues that are important to me. When you look at the cancer doctors and/or researchers that the Conquer Cancer Foundation has supported over the years, you can be confident that the donations you make are planting seeds that will improve cancer care.

 

How does the Conquer Cancer Foundation support your work at ASCO? 

I manage the communication efforts for CancerLinQ, which is supported by the Conquer Cancer Foundation. CancerLinQ is ASCO’s multiphase initiative to build a learning health system in cancer care and truly has the potential to transform the way cancer is understood and treated. It is an inspiring project that has only elevated my support of the Conquer Cancer Foundation.

Eileen Melnick, Director, Grants & Awards, Conquer Cancer Foundation

Why do you choose to support the Conquer Cancer Foundation?

I donate and support the Conquer Cancer Foundation because I believe in our mission. Four years ago, conquering cancer took on a more personal meaning to me when my mother was diagnosed with cancer. Sadly, she passed away, but there are many who have survived this devastating disease due to the important progress against cancer over the past four decades. Much work remains to be done to conquer cancer and the Foundation needs support more than ever, no matter how small.

 

How does the Conquer Cancer Foundation support your work at ASCO?

The Conquer Cancer Foundation raises funds that support the Grants and Awards Program, which has identified and supported the best and brightest clinical and translational researchers for 30 years. As the Director of this program, I take great pride in ensuring that donors’ investments in cancer research creates hope for breakthroughs in the future.

Jeannine Salamone, Associate Director, Patient Education and Advocacy, ASCO

Why do you choose to support the Conquer Cancer Foundation?

The Conquer Cancer Foundation provides people with cancer and their loved ones with information to help them make informed decisions about their care. I turned to Cancer.Net 13 years ago when I was first diagnosed with breast cancer. I am incredibly proud to support the Foundation that helped me become an advocate for myself as well as for others, like my twin sister, Jackie, who is currently undergoing treatment for breast cancer. 

 

How does the Conquer Cancer Foundation support your work at ASCO?

I work on the Patient Education and Advocacy team in ASCO’s Communications and Patient Information Department. Our Editorial Board and editorial staff provide patients and caregivers with trusted cancer education through Cancer.Net as well as a wealth of printed publications and resources. Additionally, with the support of the Conquer Cancer Foundation, we started a patient advocate scholarship program in 2007, awarding scholarships to cancer advocates so that they may attend ASCO meetings to attain the education, knowledge, and skills essential to their participation and engagement in cancer research, education, and support. It has been an honor to manage this program from its inception and I am grateful to the Conquer Cancer Foundation for its ongoing support of this vital program.

Donations to the Conquer Cancer Foundation can be made online at www.conquercancerfoundation.org/donate. ■

© 2013. American Society of Clinical Oncology. All rights reserved.



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