MD Anderson supporters gathered at the Mar-a-Lago Club in Palm Beach on Dec. 13 for the institution’s Making Cancer History® Award Gala. With a theme of “Milestones and Miracles,” the event honored MD Anderson Cancer Center
Board of Visitors member David Koch and the late Maria Floyd for their advocacy as cancer patients and philanthropic support.
The inaugural event was part of MD Anderson’s ongoing outreach to the Palm Beach community.
“We’ve hosted educational seminars in the Palm Beach community for almost a decade,” says Patrick Mulvey, vice president for Development at MD Anderson. “Several of our patients and donors who live in the area felt it was time to expand our outreach and share the message of hope MD Anderson offers those facing cancer.”
Almost $1 million had been raised through tickets sales and sponsorships before the first of nearly 450 guests arrived at the gala. A surprise $1 million gift presented near the evening’s end by MD Anderson Cancer Center Board of Visitors member William B. Finneran pushed the community’s total philanthropic support to almost $2 million.
Finneran’s gift will establish the Finneran Family Endowment for Translational Research at MD Anderson. Funds from the endowment will create the Finneran Family Prize, a $50,000 cash award that will go each fall to a deserving faculty member.
“MD Anderson means so much to me,” says Finneran, a prostate cancer survivor who is under the care of Christopher Logothetis, M.D., professor and chair, Genitourinary Medical Oncology. “I’m extremely thankful for the care I’ve received from Dr. Logothetis and the entire staff there. Creating this endowment is my way of recognizing the outstanding faculty who offer hope to patients, like me, and their families for a future free of cancer.”