Eisenberg Challenge helps Karmanos Partners raise record $2.1 million in cancer research support
To view and order photos from the Partners Evening, click here.
Ron Lieberman, Lieberman Photography
DETROIT– Partners, a group of young, hands-on volunteers dedicated to supporting the Barbara Ann Karmanos Cancer Institute, has raised more than $2.1 million for cancer research at the Institute through the annual Partners Golf Classic, held Aug. 30 at Franklin Hills Country Club and the Evening event Sept. 11 at the Detroit Institute of Arts.
This year’s amount is a record for the Partners. Since its inception 16 years ago, members have raised nearly $11 million for Karmanos.
With the assistance of generous individual donors, Partners also met a $1 million challenge, presented by this year’s Partners honorees, Frances and Kenneth Eisenberg. Kenneth Eisenberg is chairman and CEO of Kenwal Steel Corp. in Dearborn and serves on the Karmanos Cancer Center Board of Directors.
Contributions to the special challenge support the relocation and expansion of Karmanos’ world-renowned Phase I Clinical Trials Program, run by Patricia LoRusso, D.O., director of the newly-renamed Eisenberg Center for Experimental Therapeutics.
“The contributions by the Eisenbergs and the Institute’s many generous friends allow us to continue testing new drugs that provide hope for patients battling cancer today and for those who may be diagnosed in the future,” said Dr. LoRusso. “While our patients who take part in these critical trials are the real heroes, our donors truly promote our cause of one day bringing cancer under complete control. We recognize the need to work together, not only within our own team at the center, but also with those outside of the hospital setting. This donation will provide additional resources that will hopefully get us closer to a cancer cure.”
Approximately $750,000 is dedicated for the creation of a laboratory that will be run by Gerold Bepler, M.D., Ph.D., president and CEO of Karmanos. Funds also will be used for the purchase of the newest laboratory equipment, which allows Dr. Bepler and his research colleagues to study cancer at the molecular level.
“It is through the determined efforts of the Partners, as well as our donors’ tremendous sense of philanthropy, that our clinical and basic scientific researchers will continue work on what may be tomorrow’s cure for cancer,” said Dr. Bepler. “We deeply appreciate the dedication that the Partners and our contributors have shown to the Institute and to our mission.”
The Eisenbergs are long-time advocates for Karmanos and have passed down this commitment to family members. During a special moment at the Partners Evening event, their grandson, Noah, performed and dedicated, “The Happy Song,” to all Karmanos patients. The Eisenbergs say that supporting cancer research is crucial and that cancer has personally affected their family.
“Cancer touches everyone,” said Kenneth Eisenberg. “For that reason, it is personally fulfilling to provide sustained support for Karmanos, where exciting research holds the promise of stopping cancer in its tracks and creating a brighter future for so many people.”
Partners acknowledge many local companies and individuals who contributed to this year’s fundraising efforts including Compuware Corporation, which served as corporate partner and Kenwal Steel Corp. as host sponsor.
Other key sponsors include: Agree Realty Corporation; Marcia and Eugene Applebaum; AXA Foundation; Susie, Larry, Stephanie and Justin Becker and Dr. David and Pauline Goodman; Barbara and Harold Beznos; Cambridge Consulting Group; The Ferrantino Foundation; Marjorie S. Fisher; Madeline and Sidney Forbes; Catherine and Nathan Forbes; Jennifer and David Forbes; The Forbes Company; Ford Motor Company; F.Y. Chang Foundation, Ambassador Julia Chang Bloch and Stuart Marshall Bloch; Nancy and James Grosfeld; HoMedics; Honigman Miller Schwartz and Cohn LLP; Hour Detroit and Dbusiness Magazines; Laura and Peter Karmanos, III, Julie and Nick Karmanos and Christy and Jason Karmanos; The Kid Rock Foundation; Elizabeth and Michael Kojaian; Quicken Loans and fathead; Residential Home Health; Eunice and Milt Ring; Sigma Associates, Inc.; Somerset Collection; Special Events Rental; The Suburban Collection; Taubman; Trott & Trott and News/Talk 760 WJR.
Donors that also assisted Partners members in meeting the Eisenbergs’ $1 Million Challenge include Ann and Jim Nicholson, Linda Dresner and Ed Levy, Lil and Alex Erdeljan, Kellie and Mike Ferrantino, Kathleen and David Trott, Becky and Gary Sakwa, Madeline and Sidney Forbes, Jennifer and David Fischer, Marcia and Eugene Applebaum, Sandy and Alan S. Schwartz, Ina and Murray Pitt, Eunice and Milt Ring, Dr. Randy Dean and Samuel T. Stahl; and Arlene and Richard Agree.