360 benefactors gathered last night in the promise to save lives and end breast cancer, and raised $825,000 for the Puget Sound affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure. The annual Grace Notes gala, held at The Fairmont Olympic Hotel in Seattle and emceed by entertainer Fred Northup, Jr., was a celebration of breast cancer survivors and an important fundraiser to fight breast cancer locally. The event was attended by a number of civic and business leaders and area celebrities, including University of Washington Head Football Coach and 2012 Race for the Cure Grand Marshal Steve Sarkisian, Seahawks legend and Ring of Honor recipient Jacob Green, Sonic’s star Fred Brown and KING TV news anchor Jean Enersen.
Every year, nearly 800 women in Washington State die from breast cancer, a disease that touches nearly every person’s life in some way. Early detection is the key to surviving breast cancer as it leads to early treatment and, when treated early, the five-year survival rate is 98% in the United States. When detected later and the breast cancer has spread, the five-year survival rate falls to just 23%.
“Women’s health remains our top priority, and we remain focused on the goal of serving our community and saving lives,” said Cheryl Shaw, Komen Puget Sound Executive Director. “Our Grace Notes gala is a major annual fundraising event, and I’m gratified and overwhelmed by the generosity of our donors and sponsors who came together to raise $825,000, exceeding last year. This support will make a significant difference in our ability to continue the fight against breast cancer and provide vital services in the Puget Sound region and across Western Washington.”
Seventy-five percent of funds raised at the gala will be spent in the Western Washington community, primarily to provide essential services for underserved women, which include mammograms, screenings, education, prevention and research efforts. Last year, Komen Puget Sound was able to provide free mammograms to over 13,000 qualified low income and underserved women.
The remaining twenty-five percent of funds raised, nearly $1 million annually, goes to medical research to find a cure for breast cancer. Active involvement by more than 700 community volunteers allows Komen Puget Sound to operate with a small staff and spend just five-percent of its annual budget on administration.
Highlights of the auction included a 2013 Ford Shelby Mustang GT 350, A BBQ Party for 20 hosted by Seahawks star Jacob Green and a custom 2012 Harley Davidson Ultra Classic Electra Glide motorcycle.
The night was dedicated to honoring the late C.J. Taylor Day, whose courage, compassion and drive to help others led her and a dedicated group of volunteers to found the Puget Sound affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure 19 years ago. C.J. lost her mother to breast cancer at age 17, and was passionately committed to ensure all women facing breast cancer not only have a fighting chance to survive but to thrive. She exemplifies the power of one person to change a whole community for the better.
About Susan G. Komen for the Cure® and Komen Puget Sound Affiliate
The Puget Sound Affiliate was established in 1993 and has invested nearly $23 million to fund local breast health education, screening and treatment support in Western Washington and for research to find the cures for breast cancer. The Puget Sound Affiliate is one of the largest Komen Affiliates out of a network of 120 across the country. It focuses its efforts on saving lives by funding education and early detection, as well as patient assistance and patient navigation in 16 counties in Western Washington. To learn more about Komen Puget Sound, please go to www.komenpugetsound.org. Follow us on Twitter (@KomenPugetSound) or Facebook (facebook.com/KomenPugetSound)