Twelve candidates will engage in spirited competition March – June to honor Boy & Girl of the Year
SAN FRANCISCO, April 5, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) kicked off its 21st Man & Woman of the Year campaign with a reception at the Intercontinental Mark Hopkins Hotel on Thursday, March 31, 2011. Twelve dynamic and passionate Bay Area professionals will engage in a spirited 10-week competition to earn LLS's "Man & Woman of the Year" title by raising funds for blood cancer research. Every dollar counts as one vote and the titles will be awarded to the man and woman with the most votes at the Grand Finale on June 4, 2011, at the Fairmont San Francisco. The candidates will raise funds in honor of local blood cancer survivors and the Boy and Girl of the Year, Juan Carlos Zapata and Ruby Grandy, who are both currently undergoing treatment for leukemia.
Boy of the Year gives special performance
Juan Carlos Zapata, 2011 Boy of the Year, gave a special performance at Thursday's event of his song, 'Imagine Cancer Free.' The song is based on John Lennon's Imagine and Juan Carlos and his mother, Gabriela, wrote and recorded it while attending Oakland Children's Hospital Music Therapy program. View the clip at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e0PiVsirDCk.
2011 Boy & Girl of the Year
Juan Carlos Zapata
Juan Carlos was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), the most common form of childhood leukemia in December 2009. Upon diagnosis, Juan's doctors also learned that he had a chromosome abnormality called the Philadelphia Chromosome (ALL+PH) and would require a bone marrow transplant. Unable to find a bone marrow match, Juan received a cord blood transplant on July 20, 2010. He is now doing well and loves to play baseball (catcher & 3rd base), football (defensive end), wrestling, and golf. His favorite school subjects are math, science, and of course, recess!
Ruby was diagnosed with acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), the most common form of childhood leukemia in May 2009. Despite daily chemotherapy, she is a vivacious four-year-old who loves the color pink and rhinestones. In her mother's words, "Ruby doesn't wallow in pain or feel sorry for herself…she reminds us to cherish each beautiful moment." It is this spirit and inspiration that drives the Man & Woman of the Year candidates to raise funds and compete for the titles.
The candidates and fundraising
The 2011 Man & Woman of the Year candidates are: Sandra Acevedo-Hanns of One World One Voice, Aggie Bonpua of Soulmates Wines, John Caine of HiDive Bar & Restaurant, Shelley Costantini of BellaPelle Skin Studios, Author Rosemary Gong, Deron Kartoon of Varitan, Inc. Capital Solutions, Philippe Lee of Jade Studio Productions, Elizabeth Matzner of Empress PR, Sheryl Nigro of Corporate Edge, Monika Sola of Turn, Inc., Kenneth Winn of Merrill Lynch and Mark Zafra of McKesson. To learn more about this year's candidates and their campaigns, visit http://www.mwoy.org/sf/localchapter/candidates.
The candidates will use their talents, networks and creativity to raise funds and help advance LLS's mission to find a cure for leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. A variety of fundraising events will take place throughout April and May allowing the candidates' friends, family, professional networks and the public to experience the energy and spirit that infuses this fundraising campaign. For an ongoing list of candidate fundraising events, visit http://www.mwoy.org/sf/localchapter/events.
This year's candidates have pledged to surpass last year's record fundraising total of $803,000.
A majority of the candidates are participating because of their own personal experience with blood cancer or are honoring someone close to them.
About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society ® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services.
Founded in 1949 and headquartered in White Plains, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org or contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. ET. www.LLS.org.
SOURCE Leukemia & Lymphoma Society - Greater San Francisco Bay Area Chapter