It's hard to believe we’re already two months into my new role as CEO of Children’s Cancer Research Fund (CCRF)! These initial weeks have been a whirlwind filled with optimism and hope, and I’m excited to share my vision for the future of CCRF with you.
First and foremost, I want to acknowledge the terrifically talented group of individuals who make up the heart and soul of CCRF. It’s true that CCRF has faced its fair share of transitions in recent years, as many nonprofits have. While such adversity can be challenging, it’s inspiring seeing everyone continue to put heart, passion and care into our mission.
We are all united by one powerful purpose: to make a difference in the lives of children facing cancer.
It's remarkable to witness the collective talent that propels us toward our shared goal. What most excites me is the potential to harness the wealth of expertise this team brings to drive our mission forward, pushing the boundaries of what we've achieved in the past.
CCRF already has so much to be proud of, and I'm honored to be part of a team committed to doing even more.
Having worked with nonprofits, both directly and indirectly, for a couple of decades, I can confidently say that the passion for CCRF’s mission from supporters like you is unlike anything I’ve seen before. Whether someone is directly impacted by childhood cancer or is hearing about CCRF for the first time, there is an overwhelming desire to offer support, get involved and make a meaningful difference.
The level of "What can I do?" is incomparable.
For example, I had the privilege of sending our 2023 Camp Norden in-person campers off to Crosslake in August. When the driver of their bus learned where he was taking the children and why, he was ecstatic, vowing to make the trip there as fun and comfortable as possible.
His enthusiasm in playing even a brief role in these kids' lives exemplifies the kind of energy and dedication you won't find for many other nonprofits. At CCRF, there's an overflowing sense of joy from the communities we connect with.
Here, there’s hope. Every single person is ready to do anything in their power to make life better for kids and their families. And that’s because we know what’s offered to kids facing cancer right now is simply not enough.
My personal connection to the cause stems from the loss of my mother to ovarian cancer at the age of 58. I witnessed the toll that treatments took on her as an adult, and children deserve better than to be subjected to similarly harsh treatments.
We must do more for our kids. There is no shortage of innovative and promising ideas to make progress in childhood cancer treatment — our job is to make that research possible.
One of my primary goals as CEO is to increase the national visibility of CCRF and make it a household name. The only direction we can go is up. We have the mission, the impact, the researchers and the expertise. Now it’s time to amplify our reach.
Because to end childhood cancer, it takes all of us.
Our mission is one of hope, not sadness. We’re here to make a positive change, to create a world where childhood cancer is a distant memory.
Thank you for joining me on this journey.