MD Anderson’s first A Conversation With a Living Legend® dinner in Atlanta, honoring former Georgia Senator Sam Nunn, raised more than $668,000 for cancer research at the institution.
Approximately 500 guests gathered at the InterContinental Buckhead May 17 for an evening that included an exclusive interview between Nunn and veteran CBS news journalist Bob Schieffer. Chaired by MD Anderson Board of Visitors member Tom Johnson and his wife, Edwina, the event featured testimonials by four patients reminding audience members of philanthropy’s role in the fight against cancer.
Lung cancer survivor Jeff Wigbels received MD Anderson’s Making Cancer History® Award. Since establishing the Wigbels-Herbst Cancer Research Fund at MD Anderson, Wigbels has pledged to raise $10 million for lung cancer research under the direction of his oncologist, Roy S. Herbst, M.D., Ph.D., professor in the Department of Thoracic/Head and Neck Medical Oncology and co-principal investigator of an innovative set of clinical trials called BATTLE (Biomarker-integrated Approaches of Targeted Therapy for Lung Cancer Elimination).
AirTran Airways donated a pair of business class tickets at each table. The tickets, offered as silent auction items, raised $50,950. Other major sponsors included the Coca-Cola Company, AT&T, Edwina and Tom Johnson, the Fuqua Family Foundation and Nellie Axelroad.
The evening’s proceeds will support research “designed to extend, and to save, the lives of those with cancer,” said Johnson.
“My friends, we are going to fight this battle against our common enemy at every level — cancer prevention, cancer research, cancer treatment and cancer care — until one day cancer loses, and we win,” he said.