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Texas Chapter of Women's Organization Celebrates $1 Million Investment of Giving to M. D. Anderson Cancer Center

Texas Chapter of Women's Organization Celebrates $1 Million Investment of Giving to M. D. Anderson Cancer Center
M. D. Anderson News Release 01/17/02

The Texas Federation of Business and Professional Women's Club's (BPW) was committed to The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center even before the institution opened its doors in 1941. 

The grassroots organization of working women aspired to a future free from cancer as early as the 1930s when the group launched a statewide letter writing campaign urging lawmakers to pass legislation to establish a cancer center in Texas. Now, as M. D. Anderson marks its 60th anniversary, BPW also reaches a milestone in its history of involvement with the cancer center by achieving the $1 million mark in philanthropic giving to cancer research initiatives and patient programs.

"Each year, our members scramble eggs, play golf, collect pennies, sell bottles and, in numerous other ways, raise the funds that we contribute to M. D. Anderson," explains Nancy Jackson, immediate past president of BPW's Texas chapter. "Although the contributions may be small at times, each cent is given in the spirit of hope and belief that we each make a difference in the fight against cancer. We are proud that we are helping by providing seed money to grow the projects that one day may save the lives of others as well as our own."

In contributing funds to M. D. Anderson, BPW remains true to its own mission that advocates and advances the work of women, a commitment that dates back to 1919 when the organization was spawned from the WWI stateside effort to "organize the resources of professional women." 

Today, thanks to the participation of women in about 90 local organizations across Texas, BPW has contributed to numerous programs at M. D. Anderson to benefit women or that are conceived by women. 

Since 1975 when BPW awarded its first gift to M. D. Anderson, the group's generosity and volunteer spirit have supported - among many efforts - nursing career development and recruitment, breast cancer research and education, the volunteer-operated beauty and barber shop for patients, and research in pediatric brain cancer, bladder cancer in women and quality of life among ovarian cancer patients.

"The heart-felt and collective work of our friends at BPW is an excellent example of how every dollar contributed to cancer research makes a difference," explains Dr. Michael Ahearn, dean of the School of Allied Health Sciences at M. D. Anderson who co-chairs a selection committee that works closely with BPW each year to identify funding recipients. "So many of the advancements made at M. D. Anderson result from initial seed funding provided by forward-thinking people and organizations like BPW. We are grateful to partner with an organization that has spent more than 80 years improving all aspects of the lives of women."

In addition to BPW's funding support of M. D. Anderson programs, since 1980 the organization annually has recognized the outstanding work of a woman faculty member at M. D. Anderson by presenting her with the prestigious Business and Professional Women of Texas Award. Many of M. D. Anderson's faculty grant recipients have successfully invested BPW's gifts as seed funding, which enabled them to, in turn, secure significant federal funding for their research.


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