News & Press

New York City Melanoma Community Gathers to Drive Treatment Advances


Wings of Hope Gala Raises Money to Support Research Breakthroughs for People with Melanoma


NEW YORK— The New York melanoma community will celebrate recent advances in melanoma research and raise critically needed funds to fuel ongoing progress towards treatment breakthroughs during the Melanoma Research Foundation’s (MRF) annual Wings of Hope for Melanoma Gala, to be held October 11 at Gotham Hall in New York City. 

At the event, Dr. Andrew Bronin, associate clinical professor of dermatology at Yale School of Medicine, will be honored with the 2012 Humanitarian Award.  John J. Connolly, EdD, president and CEO of Castle Connolly Medical Ltd., will receive the 2012 Vision of Hope Award.  Three people will be honored for bravely battling melanoma.  The recipients include:

  • Jake Eberts, the famous Hollywood film producer known for the beloved films Chariots of Fire, Dances with Wolves and Driving Miss Daisy, who died in early September from ocular melanoma
  • Public relations guru Monica Connell Healey, daughter of William F. Connell, the founder, chairman and chief executive officer of Connell Limited Partnership
  • Deborah Patak of upstate New York

At this year’s American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) meeting in June, researchers announced promising results from several recent clinical trials. 

“This year, we’re celebrating promising clinical trial results and the unfaltering dedication of the physicians and researchers who support the melanoma community,” said Timothy J. Turnham, executive director of the MRF.  “The scientific community is on the cusp of breakthroughs in melanoma research like never before.  Nevertheless, melanoma diagnoses are increasing at an epidemic rate.  The Wings of Hope Gala in New York will raise urgently needed funding to support the development of effective treatments for people fighting this disease.” 

The annual Wings of Hope gala is an important part of the MRF’s work to fund innovative melanoma research.  The MRF is the largest independent, national organization dedicated to supporting educational efforts, patient advocacy and medical research aimed at finding treatments and, eventually, a cure for melanoma.  The MRF’s efforts include support for clinical trials combining investigational therapies.

The 2012 Wings of Hope for Melanoma Gala in New York City will include an exciting evening of music, dancing, gourmet food and drink, as well as high-end auction items. 

Sponsors include Amgen, Castle Connolly Medical Ltd., Eastdil Secured, Diageo, Dreyfus, Genentech, Beaco, Brick NYC, Carmine’s, Gabriela's Restaurant, Grandaisy Bakery, Don Julio Tequila, Ketel One Vodka, Tanqueray and Johnnie Walker. 

To learn more about the event, visit www.WingsofHopeNY.org.  To purchase tickets and learn more about sponsorship opportunities, contact event organizer Darren Port at (646) 278-6735 or [email protected]

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About Melanoma
Melanoma is one of the fastest growing cancers in the United States and can strike men and women of all ages, all races and skin types. With a one in 50 lifetime risk of developing melanoma, nearly 76,000 Americans are expected to be diagnosed with the disease in 2012, resulting in over 9,000 deaths. Melanoma is the most common form of cancer for young adults 25- to 29-years-old and the second most common cancer in adolescents and young adults 15- to 29-years-old. 

The majority of melanomas occur on the skin; in fact, melanoma is the most serious type of skin cancer. Melanoma can also occur in the eye (ocular, or uveal melanoma), in mucous membranes (mucosal melanoma), or even beneath fingernails or toenails. 

About Melanoma Research Foundation
The Melanoma Research Foundation (MRF) is the largest independent, national organization devoted to melanoma in the United States. Committed to the support of medical research in finding effective treatments and eventually a cure for melanoma, the MRF also educates patients and physicians about prevention, diagnosis and the treatment of melanoma. The MRF is an active advocate for the melanoma community, helping to raise awareness of this disease and the need for a cure. The MRF’s website is the premier source for melanoma information seekers. More information is available at www.melanoma.org.



Media Contact:
Lauren Smith
Jones Public Affairs
(202) 591-4065