Strides to Fight Cancer
When she crossed the finish line at the 2017 Detroit Free Press Marathon, Deb Kaplan had raised more than $6,500 for Game on Cancer, and her team, the West Bloomfield Wellness Warriors, had raised more than $17,100. Kaplan, an administrative partner at West Bloomfield Hospital, trained for months to run all 26.2 miles, while also encouraging family and friends to support Game on Cancer, a program that alleviates some of the hidden financial costs of cancer care, supports clinical programs, and funds groundbreaking research. “This was a wonderful team effort,” says Kaplan. “West Bloomfield is an amazing, compassionate community that cares.”
2017 in Numbers
- $35,674,952 in gift commitments
- $34,583,493 in cash revenue
- 14,193 total donors
- 5,306 first-time donors
- 40 gifts over $100,000
- 178 grant proposals submitted to foundations, with an acceptance rate of 83%, exceeding the industry standard of 25%
- For every Henry Ford operational dollar provided, the Development Office hands back $8.27
Transforming Radiation Oncology Across the World
Today, doctors can aim radiation therapy directly at tumors while tracking them in real time and avoiding surrounding tissues through the ViewRay MRIdian Linac unit, an innovative and life-saving piece of technology now in service at Henry Ford Medical Center-Cottage Grosse Pointe Farms. Henry Ford is the first health system in the world to activate this new equipment and also performed the first treatment using the ViewRay in 2017 in Grosse Pointe. Thanks to a gift from William and Elizabeth Rands, more doctors will be trained on the use of the ViewRay, transforming radiation and oncology services for patients across the state and beyond. The Rands have been Henry Ford patients, friends, and supporters for more than 40 years, with William serving in significant roles on various boards including the Henry Ford Cancer Institute Advisory Board. The training and advanced uses of the ViewRay will be carried out under the direction of Dr. Ben Movsas, the chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Henry Ford Cancer Institute.
Combining the Arts and Healing
With a passion for the arts and a keen eye as an interior designer, Lindsay Anderson knows how important the right space can be. In that spirit, Lindsay gave a generous gift to establish the Lindsay Anderson Healing Arts Curator Fund. This fund will support a curator for the Healing Arts program at Henry Ford Health System’s new Brigitte Harris Cancer Pavilion, which is expected to open in early 2020. The Healing Arts Program creates a calming environment for patients, visitors and staff by integrating the creative arts and aesthetic experiences into the healing process.
Lindsay and her family share a long and enduring connection to Henry Ford Health System and Henry Ford himself. Lindsay’s father was a longtime board member at Henry Ford Health System, and established the Wendell W. Anderson Chair in Cancer in honor of his father, Wendell W. Anderson Senior.
Last year, the Wendell W. Anderson Chair in Cancer generated close to $52,000 to support two new clinical trials in lung and pancreatic cancer. In particular, the research has identified a gene therapy product named the Wendells virus that can greatly improve outcomes in patients with prostate cancer.
In these tremendous innovations, and through Lindsay’s continued generosity, the Anderson legacy lives on.
A Bridge of Hope
Robert J. Vlasic made a generous gift of $5 million to Henry Ford Health System to honor the memory of his late wife, Nancy. This remarkable gift will be recognized through the naming of The Nancy Vlasic Skyway, which will connect the Brigitte Harris Cancer Pavilion and Henry Ford Hospital over West Grand Boulevard. The Vlasic family shared that Nancy always offered fresh lemonade to guests in her home. In the same spirit of hospitality, a lemonade stand is being planned for one end of the Skyway.
Between 1976 and 1987, Robert Vlasic served on the Henry Ford Health System Board of Trustees, and was board chairman from 1983 to 1987. He was a dedicated volunteer and supporter of Henry Ford for more than 40 years. The connection between the Vlasic family and the health system has expanded to include several additional family members. With this gift, the Vlasic family bridges the historical significance of Henry Ford Hospital with the hope and promise the Brigitte Harris Cancer Pavilion will offer patients and families.