Friday, May 24, 2024

Gateway Celebrity Fight Night Celebrates 30th Anniversary Benefitting Early-Phase Cancer Research, Raising More Than $3 Million

Marking the gala’s 30th anniversary in the Valley, 100% of proceeds from Gateway Celebrity Fight Night will directly fund early-phase cancer research.

PHOENIX, April 30, 2024 /PRNewswire/ — Gateway for Cancer Research—a nonprofit 501c(3) organization committed to funding innovative, Phase I and Phase II cancer trials — celebrated the 2024 Gateway Celebrity Fight Night 30th Anniversary, an Emerald Ball on Saturday, April 27 at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess in Scottsdale, Arizona. More than $3 million was raised in a single night, and thanks to generous underwriting by Dr. Stacie J. and Mr. Richard J Stephenson, 100% of proceeds directly fund these early-phase clinical trials.

Gateway Celebrity Fight Night drew actors, entertainers, athletes, philanthropists, and leading medical professionals to raise funds for early-phase cancer trials, as they are often overlooked and underfunded. These trials often mark the first-in-human studies of promising new cancer drugs and therapies. 

Michael Bublé, GRAMMY Award winning singer, headlined the event, with additional performances by Fight Song singer-songwriter Rachel Platten, and *NSYNC members Chris Kirkpatrick and Joey Fatone, who also served as the evening’s emcee. The event also featured appearances by 16-time Grammy Award winning producer David Foster, who has served as the event’s musical director for 23 years; singer-songwriter Katharine McPhee; Pro Football Hall of Fame member and cancer advocate Calvin Johnson Jr.; comedian and celebrity auctioneer Caroline Rhea, and more.

Dallas Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott was honored with the evening’s Mary Brown Stephenson Award in recognition of his commitment to colon cancer research through his Faith Fight Finish Foundation. Both Dak and Mr. Stephenson lost their mothers to cancer, which makes this year’s award even more significant. Prescott established the nonprofit organization in honor of his mother, Peggy Prescott, who lost her battle with the disease in 2013. Mary Brown Stephenson was the mother of Gateway founder Mr. Richard J Stephenson, who founded the organization in her memory in 1991. The focus of FFF has since expanded to also help individuals, families and communities overcome adversity by focusing on mental health and suicide prevention.

Guests were also presented with the incredible story of John DiClemente, who enrolled in Dr. Yoshie Umemura’s Gateway-funded clinical trial after being diagnosed with glioblastoma multiforme, one of the deadliest and most treatment-resistant cancers, in September 2021 and at that time was given 16 months to live. There are no current FDA-approved treatments that have succeeded in significantly extending patients’ lives beyond a few extra months.

Dr. Umemura was a researcher at the University of Michigan, and is now the Division Chief of Neuro-Oncology at Barrow Neurological Institute, as well as the Chief Medical Officer at the Ivy Brain Tumor Center. Dr. Umemura and her colleagues are evaluating whether a new combination of treatments can allow patients like DiClemente to experience an increase in overall survival.

As a result of this trial, DiClemente is now 29 months past his diagnosis and is considered a long-term survivor. He credits the clinical trial with saving his life, giving him hope, and enabling him to enjoy life with his family.

“We are honored to host Gateway Celebrity Fight Night 30th Anniversary Emerald Ball to continue the legacy of this inspiring event, with a sharpened focus on early-phase cancer trials for the next 30 years and beyond,” said Dr. Stacie J. Stephenson, Vice Chair at Gateway for Cancer Research, and bestselling author of Glow: 90 Days to Create Your Vibrant Life From Within. “It’s because of the bravery of Gateway’s patients and researchers, and the generosity of our donors, that we are able to continue this lifesaving work that is ALWAYS and ONLY about the patient.” 

“Gateway for Cancer Research is a remarkable organization, and we are overwhelmed by the tremendous support we’ve received,” said Gateway’s Founder and Chairman, Richard J Stephenson. Mr. Stephenson is the founder of both Cancer Treatment Centers of America and Gateway for Cancer Research. “To hear directly from those whose lives we’ve changed with this organization is one of the great honors of my life.” 

The black-tie event featured a cocktail reception, silent auction, elegant dinner and exciting live auction including one-of-a-kind luxury items. For more information about Gateway for Cancer Research, visit https://www.gatewaycr.org

About Gateway for Cancer Research
Gateway for Cancer Research℠ is a nonprofit 501c(3) organization committed to finding, funding and furthering innovative cancer research that helps cancer patients feel better and live longer as we work to end cancer as we know it. Thanks to generous underwriting by Dr. Stacie J. and Mr. Richard J Stephenson, 100% of every donation directly funds Phase I and Phase II cancer clinical trials at leading research institutions around the world. Since its inception in 1991, Gateway has invested more than $114 million to advance 234 cancer clinical trials. These studies have delivered HOPE and healing to more than 30,000 cancer patients, altered the standard of care at some of the world’s most trusted health care institutions, and contributed to new FDA-approved cancer treatments. Get involved today by visiting GatewayCR.org, like us on Facebook at Gateway4CancerResearch, join the conversation on X at @GatewayforCR and follow us on Instagram at @GatewayforCR,  #GatewayCelebrityFightNight #CelebrityFightNight #BeAGateway #GatewayForCancerResearch #KnockOutCancer

Contact: Anna Lonsway, 216-905-0275, [email protected]

SOURCE Gateway for Cancer Research



Originally published at https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/gateway-celebrity-fight-night-celebrates-30th-anniversary-benefitting-early-phase-cancer-research-raising-more-than-3-million-302131127.html
Images courtesy of https://pixabay.com

author avatar
NY Editor

Similar Articles

business banners

Most Popular