PHOENIX, Ariz. -- April 15, 2014 -- The Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) recently honored two significant Arizona philanthropists at their annual Founders Dinner for their support of TGen's research into brain, colon and prostate cancer. The event took place March 28 in Scottsdale.
Catherine Ivy, Founder and President of The Ben & Catherine Ivy Foundation, received TGen's John S. McCain Leadership Award, named for U.S. Sen. John McCain of Arizona and annually presented for leadership and dedication that have made a significant impact in the fight against disease and helping patients worldwide.
Ivy established her foundation in memory of her late husband Ben, who succumbed to glioblastoma. She has contributed tens of millions of dollars to TGen and other institutions, and has been instrumental in finding ways to bring major institutional collaborators together to fight this devastating brain cancer.
"I have had the opportunity to observe research institutions across the nation and around the globe, and TGen stands out because of its unique insights into the human genome and its impact on human health," Ivy said. "The greatest thing I get from TGen is hope, because they are actively and successfully pursuing answers for patients."
Dr. Jeffrey Trent, TGen President and Research Director, said "Catherine Ivy's laser focus toward making a difference for patients with glioblastoma has been a call to arms for TGen to come along side her and work jointly across numerous projects over the past several years."
Sen. McCain called Ivy "a truly great American" and praised the "outstanding work" of the Ivy Foundation: "The effort she has made through her Foundation and with Dr. Trent and TGen has been quite remarkable," he said.
Jackson receives TGen's Collaborative Spirit Award
Craig Jackson, Chairman and CEO of the Barrett-Jackson Auction Company, received TGen's Collaborative Spirit Award, annually presented to an individual or organization whose collaborative spirit has helped to foster lasting relationships and partnerships in the fight against diseases that plague humanity.
The Barrett-Jackson Cancer Research Fund at TGen, established in 2010, is a salute to Jackson's father, Russ, and brother, Brian, whose lives were cut short by colon cancer. Craig Jackson has raised nearly $1.5 million through the auction of classic autos at his annual Barrett-Jackson Collector Car Auctions in Scottsdale, Reno/Tahoe, Las Vegas, and Palm Beach, Fla.
"The success of our Cancer Research Fund is possible because of the great customers and supporters who participate in our auctions," Jackson said. "A lot of people do it because they knew my father and my brother, but a lot of people have had cancer touch them and see the wisdom in what we're attempting to achieve."
Jackson already has raised $380,000 this year, and expects to raise more.
TGen Foundation President Michael Bassoff congratulated Ivy and Jackson for their extraordinary commitment to TGen's cancer research and their compassion for patients.
"Catherine and Craig represent the very best of Arizona in their unrelenting concern for the pressing needs of patients who need our help today," Bassoff said. "Their organizational and financial contributions already are making a difference in the lives of patients and their families, bringing hope to many who have had none."
Translational Genomics Research Institute (TGen) is a Phoenix, Arizona-based non-profit organization dedicated to conducting groundbreaking research with life changing results. TGen is focused on helping patients with cancer, neurological disorders and diabetes, through cutting edge translational research (the process of rapidly moving research towards patient benefit). TGen physicians and scientists work to unravel the genetic components of both common and rare complex diseases in adults and children. Working with collaborators in the scientific and medical communities literally worldwide, TGen makes a substantial contribution to help our patients through efficiency and effectiveness of the translational process. For more information, visit: http://www.
TGen Senior Science Writer