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SEATTLE, WA, February 07, 2010 /24-7PressRelease/ -- Today, the Chris Elliott Fund (CEF) for Glioblastoma Brain Cancer Research has announced some major changes to their organization as well as changes that will impact the treatment of Glioblastoma Multiforme (GBM).
In 2010, the Chris Elliot Fund, for the first time since its inception in 2002, will be hiring fulltime, professional staff to assist with the infrastructure of the organization, as well as build the donor base, and market the company to secure more donation dollars for education, awareness, advocacy, and research for GBM. Mary Eversole and Gregory Copploe are among the first employees of CEF, and are honored to be appointed and aligned with the organization. Mary and Gregory bring over 20 years of marketing and non-profit experience to the organization, and with their help, will grow CEF into a more cancer curing powerhouse in 2010. "My cousin passed away with GBM just a few months ago, and I am honored to wake every morning, knowing that I am doing her a service as well as thousands of others in the U.S. who suffer from this disease, and I can't wait until GBM is eradicated forever", exclaimed Mary Eversole. "One of CEF's primary goals is to educate the general public so that they know exactly what to do about brain cancer treatment before they are diagnosed". Mary Eversole will assume the role of Special Assistant to the CEO, Dellann Elliott, while Mr. Copploe will assume the role of Marketing Director.
"We are stepping it up in 2010, and making some major changes that will affect the way brain cancer is being treated, touted Dellann Elliott, President and CEO of the Chris Elliott Fund. Our funding has made it possible to directly identify sub classes of Glioblastoma, as well as identify the genes that cause the disease." "Support from the CEF fund will be used to generate a comprehensive profile of genomic changes in human Glioblastomas that will serve as the foundation for years of vigorous functional and genetic validation work, and ultimately drug development efforts for the entire field". CEF funds would enable this team to press forward to study a large tumor sample set--allowing them to verify, across many individual cases, which genes are most important to brain tumor development (a statement issued by the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute directly to CEF). In addition, CEF funds were directly responsible for paying for a major portion of the genetic profiling which allowed Dana-Farber to obtain one of only 2 Goldhirsch grants, which will allow them to continue state of the art research for GBM. "The Genome-Topography-Scan Algorithm, as it is called, can help investigators prioritize their search for cancer-related genes, says Linda Chin, MD, of Dana Farber, and will be refined and improved as research continues. "By pointing to genes with a high probability of being involved in cancer, the technique can speed the process by which new cancer genes are indentified and therapies are developed to counter them, " Chin states.
"We look forward to the naming of the Christopher Stewart Elliott Neuro-oncology Lab for Glioblastoma Brain Cancer Research being erected sometime in early 2010 at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, and it reaffirms our commitment of how we have helped The Dana-Farber Cancer Institute move forward with finding a cure for GBM, says Mrs. Elliott. We are elated that they are acknowledging us in this way, and we will continue to support them until we see an end to this debilitating disease. Thank you Dana-Farber for helping us end brain cancer."
CEF has also established the Chris Elliott Fund Integrated Patient Support Program (IPSP) at the Swedish Neuroscience Institute, Cherry Hill Campus, and Swedish Hospital will begin integrating this program into other disease treatment areas of the hospital, using it as a model for outreach and patient support across all disease channels. Currently the IPSP offers services in the following areas: counseling advice on "how to talk to your employer" and advice on how to cope with the disease, how to obtain social security benefits, disability, tutors for your children, transportation for chemotherapy, nutrition support, food preparation, bereavement group, exercise groups, assistance with house cleaning and much more... These services play an integral role when one is transitioning and dealing with GMB for their first time, and they provide support and outreach that not only helps the patient adapt to a new lifestyle, but also relieves some of the ongoing stress and challenges they may have after surgery and diagnosis of GBM, while increasing their quality of life.
Emmy Award winning Actress, Jean Smart and local media personality, John Curley (bios below) have joined the Chris Elliot Fund for another exciting year and have plans to speak and volunteer at several events planned for 2010, including the 3rd Annual Seattle Brain Cancer Walk where she will walk with Team CEF at the Seattle Center and CEF's annual Gala and Benefit Auction on October 1st. Jean and John have been actively involved in raising funds and brain cancer awareness for the organization, and will continue to make this a priority for 2010. "Since my sister's diagnosis, I have made it a priority to battle this disease with passion and wage war against brain cancer. I am honored to work with such an incredible organization as the Chris Elliott Fund, one that is making a difference to change the outcome of GBM and erase it off the face of the planet," said Mrs. Smart. "We can make a difference, but we need to build awareness and get more of you actively involved with CEF, so please join me in this fight, and bring this disease out of the shadows and into the light". Both Mrs. Smart and Mr. Curley will remain active Board Members of CEF during 2010, and plan on contributing a significant volume of time assisting the organization.
CEF plans on launching a variety of campaigns during 2010 to include social media, public relations, website redesign, special events, and a special focus on our doctor outreach program. Outreach is done through the Patient Outreach Advocacy Committee led by Dellann Elliott and Karsen Keever. The committee will set appointments with doctors, beginning in Washington, and then branching out to the Pacific Northwest, and eventually countrywide, as they educate doctors to customize brain cancer treatment per patient based on recent research findings. "I am confident building awareness of this organization and this disease will enable CEF to move forward and donate even more significant dollars during the 2010 fiscal year, touted Gregory Copploe. "Now that Mrs. Elliott has help running the organization and has employed marketing strategists like myself to ensure that goals are being met on a daily basis, and more attention is brought to this disease, I am certain that CEF will make an honorable impact in 2010. I would also like to add, that without our dedicated volunteers like Donna Lee, Tamara DePorter, Kylie Schutler, and many others, we would never be able to meet our goals, and succeed. We are so honored to have such dedicated volunteers to see us through and make a difference in 2010."
CEF plans on partaking in and hosting four major events in 2010. First off is the 3rd Annual Seattle Brain Cancer Walk where Team CEF will bring together all of their volunteers and supporters and walk on June 26th at the Seattle Center to raise money for brain cancer. Second is the CEF Golf Classic Event on July 26th at TCP Snoqualmie Ridge, and third up is their annual Bike for Brain Cancer on August 22nd. Lastly, CEF will host their annual Gray Ribbon Gala and Benefit Auction on October 1st 2010 at a prominent eastside location to be announced at a later date. Updates and sign up pages will be added to www.chriselliottfund.org on a regular basis.
About the Chris Elliott Fund for Glioblastoma Brain Cancer Research
The Chris Elliott Fund for Glioblastoma Brain Cancer Research (CEF) is a non-profit organization that raises awareness and funds specifically aimed at taking on brain cancer. CEF has raised more than $1 million for brain cancer research across the country and provides countless resources, information and support to people living with the disease. CEF funds groundbreaking research in the Christopher S. Elliott Neuro-oncology Lab for Glioblastoma Brain Research and Applied Science Center at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston, Mass. The organization is developing and funding the Integrative Patient Support Program at the Center for Advanced Brain Tumor Treatment in Seattle's Swedish Neuroscience Institute. www.chriselliottfund.org
About Brain Cancer
Brain cancer is the most malignant form of cancer known to humankind with an average survival rate of two years. It is the second leading cause of cancer-related deaths in children under the age of 20. Each year, 8 of every 100,000 people in the U.S. are diagnosed with primary malignant brain tumors. Approximately 13,000 Americans die each year from this disease. Unlike some other cancers brain tumors do not discriminate against gender, ethnicity, age, overall fitness, or socioeconomic status. 500 terminal cases of brain cancer will be diagnosed in the Seattle-Metro area alone this year.
Chris Elliott Fund CEO-- Dellann Elliott
Dellann Elliott co-founded the Chris Elliott Fund for Glioblastoma Research shortly before her husband's death (Chris Elliott) in June of 2002. She is a skilled public advocate, attending hearings in Washington, D.C., educating doctors/patients through multimedia educational campaigns while driving the research community to collaborate care at all junctures. Dellann has been honored by Harvard University as a National Glioblastoma Patient Advocate, and is also the recipient of the "Spirit of Sammamish" Award for 2009--an award in which the city and its citizens acknowledge "Magnificent Moments of Inspiration". Dellann Elliott, a mother of two children, is also a Rotary Club Members as well as a Sammamish Chamber of Commerce member. Prior to creating the Chris Elliott Fund, she served as an environmental regulator and as an early childhood educator at a local Washington state elementary school, specializing in educating children inflicted with Down Syndrome.
Jean Smart Bio
A versatile and gifted actress, Jean Smart continues to exhibit her extraordinary talents in theater, television and film. Since completing her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree at the University of Washington, Smart's career has launched into worldwide critical acclaim. Before coming to Los Angeles she made her Broadway debut in "Piaf" and originated the role of Lil in "Last Summer at Bluefish Cove" Off-Broadway for which she received a Drama Desk nomination.
Jean will be seen in the upcoming Warner Brothers feature film, "Life As We Know It" alongside Katherine Heigl, Josh Lucas, Josh Duhamel and Christina Hendricks. Ian Deitchman and Kristin Rusk Robinson wrote this film. Barry Josephson and Paul Brooks are producing for Gold Circle and Greg Berlanti is directing. Smart will play the role of Helen, Heigl's character's mother. Smart can also be seen as Michael Cera's mother in Miguel Arteta's comedy "Youth in Revolt", a comedy that topped the box office this January.
Smart received her third Emmy Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Comedy for her role in the series, "Samantha Who?" with Christina Applegate. In January, 2006 Smart received her fourth Emmy nomination, this time for her role as the troubled and medicated First Lady Martha Logan on the Fox Drama "24". That same year the show won the Emmy for Best Drama, and received a Golden Globe nomination and a Screen Actor's Guild nomination for Ensemble Cast.
In 2001 Smart won her second Emmy Award for her guest-starring role on "Frasier" and was nominated for Guest Actress in a Drama Series for her recurring role on "The District".
In the year 2000, Smart received recognition in theater, film and television. She earned an Independent Spirit Award nomination for her critically acclaimed performance in the Miramax feature film "Guinevere" opposite Sarah Polley, she was awarded her first Emmy for her hilarious recurring role on "Frasier" and she was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for her starring role on Broadway opposite Nathan Lane in "The Man Who Came To Dinner".
She starred in the HBO drama series "Maximum Security" before starring in the popular sitcom "Designing Women". Several TV series and television films followed, including "Overkill", the critically acclaimed story of serial killer Aileen Wuornos, "High Society", in which she played neurotic novelist Ellie Walker opposite Mary McDonnell (an Americanized version of the British phenomenon "Absolutely Fabulous"), Peter Tolan's comedy "Style and Substance", "In-Laws" opposite Dennis Farina and "Center of the Universe" opposite John Goodman. In 2003 Smart starred with husband Richard Gilliland in the film "Audrey's Rain" for the Hallmark Channel.
Smart's additional film credits include Curtis Hanson's "Lucky You" opposite Eric Bana and Robert Duvall, "Hero Wanted" starring Cuba Gooding, Jr. and Ray Liotta, "Garden State" for first-time director and writer Zach Braff opposite Braff, Natalie Portman and Peter Sarsgaard, "Mistress" with Danny Aiello and Robert DeNiro, "Flashpoint" with Kris Kristofferson, "Bringing Down the House," with Steve Martin and Queen Latifa , "The Kid" with Bruce Willis and "Sweet Home Alabama" with Reese Witherspoon, and "I & Huckabees."
Smart currently resides in Los Angeles with her husband, son and daughter.
John Curley Bio
John Curley is known as the "Ironman of Auctioneers". Last year, while training for Ironman Australia, John still found the time to do 95 auctions, helping to raise an estimated $14 million in 2009 for NW non-profits.
John Curley worked for 14 years as the host of Seattle's King 5 TV's Evening Magazine, the highest-rated regionally produced TV show in the country. The show has been honored with numerous regional Emmy Awards and the Edward R. Morrow Award for excellence in Journalism.
What makes him an exceptionally popular master of ceremonies and auctioneer is his ability to tell outrageously funny stories about himself and his implausible career moves.
His gift of gab took him from selling bedpans and other medical devices to the wonderful world of television. With no formal training John was hired as a weatherman in Grand Junction Colorado. Other stops along his career track include Champaign, IL; Lancaster, PA; Springfield, VA; and Washington D.C. He picked up an Emmy for weather in 1993 and for interviewing and hosting in 1994. The zenith of his career was reached in 1995 when he was hired for Evening Magazine, where he quickly became the most recognized local TV personality.
John has earned numerous awards for his work in the community and in the field of broadcasting, including appearing on stage at Seattle's 5th Avenue Theatre. John currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Chris Elliott Fund.
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