San Diego Rallies Around 365ft. Rappel for Brain Cancer Research

Woman repelling over the side of a building

82 Participants, including local celebrities, gather their courage to rappel 365 ft. from the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego to raise critical funds for brain tumor research in San Diego, CA
SAN DIEGO, Calif. (September 25, 2014) – On October 31st and November 1st, 2014, brave participants fighting to end brain cancer will rappel 365 ft. and go Over the Edge for Brain Cancer (@OTE4BrainCancer). In its second year, @OTE4BrainCancer has received overwhelming response from the San Diego community, generating a sold-out event. 82 participants, known as “edgers”, will raise $200,000 for Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure to be directed to San Diego-based brain cancer research.
The two-day event springs into action on Halloween as this impressive list of courageous VIPs join the fight against brain cancer and rappel down the ManchesterGrand Hyatt San Diego, the city’s tallest waterfront hotel:
  • Papa Doug Manchester, Chairman, and Stephanie Brown, Snr. Director, Marketing and Public Relations, U-T San Diego
  • Hannah and Susie Nancarrow, family of FOX 5 Anchor, Loren Nancarrow
  • Maria Parker, record setting long-distance cyclist, rappelling in Google Glass
  • Dr. Bob Carter, Chief of Neurosurgery, and Dr. Clark Chen, Co-Director of Neurosurgical Oncology, UC San Diego Health System; both in their 2nd year as participants @OTE4BrainCancer
  • Monika Carlson: San Diego brain tumor survivor featured in SELF magazine issue re: tutu fashion; also going over for the 2nd time
This event is all about forming a united front to fight a terrible disease. “We believe that finding a cure to brain cancer takes a strong collaborative effort.  Since 2001, we have partnered with over 40 medical research institutions and companies in our efforts to develop better treatment for patients. We are grateful to the San Diego community for joining with us to go Over the Edge and show fearlessness in the face of brain cancer,” Max Wallace, President and CEO, Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure.
On November 1st, 72 participants will show their fearlessness as they make their rappel. Spectators and supporters are invited to gather on the pool deck of the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego to cheer on participants while enjoying high-energy entertainment and partaking in fun, food and fitness opportunities available.
As rappel spots for this year’s event are sold out, the team at Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure encourages San Diegans to try their luck at winning the last spot available by participating in the opportunity drawing! Interested parties can obtain their tickets at the following locations, and the winner must be present to rappel at 3:00 p.m. on November 1, 2014.
  • October 16, 2014 from 5:00 – 8:00 p.m.
Mesa Rim Climbing and Fitness Center: Raffle and Rappel Night (10110 Mesa Rim Rd, SD, CA 92121)
  • November 1, 2014 from 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Over the Edge for Brain Cancer at the Manchester Grand Hyatt (1 Market Place, SD, CA 92101)
Confirmed sponsors and partners for this year’s @OTE4BrainCancer include presenting sponsor, The Rick Oehme Foundation, as well as the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego, U-T San Diego, Heritage Senior Care, Brain Bash, The Case Foundation, Genentech, Araiza Melange Photography, The Tug McGraw Foundation, Mesa Rim Climbing and Fitness Center, SDSU KCR College Radio, The Beer for Brains Foundation, The BraveCort Foundation and Over the Edge.
Friday, October 31, 2014: 12:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
VIP/Media Day: Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego; 1 Market Place, San Diego, CA 92101 – 4th Floor Pool Deck
Media interested in covering the VIP/Media day on Friday, October 31, 2014 are asked to contact Stephanie DiStefano at 619-630-6305 or
Saturday, November 1, 2014: 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Main Event Day:ManchesterGrand Hyatt San Diego; 1 Market Place, San Diego, CA 92101 – 4th Floor Pool Deck
Rappel Opportunity Drawing at 3:00 p.m.
What: Over the Edge for Brain Cancer is a unique and exciting opportunity in which participants or “edgers” rappel down the ManchesterGrand Hyatt San Diego, the tallest building on the waterfront! Edgers raise a minimum of $1,500 to participate, and all event proceeds benefit San Diego-based brain cancer research.
Brain cancer is:
• the second leading cause of cancer deaths among children and young adults.
• extremely heterogeneous, with 120 different types of tumors, all of which have unknown causes.
• not as rare as you might think. Today there are more than 600,000 people in the US living with a brain tumor diagnosis and another 66,000 new diagnosis are expected this year.

About Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure

Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure (ABC2) is a venture philanthropy 501(c) (3) nonprofit organization that drives cutting-edge research and treatments for brain tumors. Through strategic partnerships with medical research centers, early-stage biotechnology companies and large multi-national pharmaceutical companies ABC2 has awarded more than $20 million in brain tumor research funding to highly qualified investigators and physician-scientists from 42 institutions and companies. For more information, please visit:

Accelerate Brain Cancer cure logo.


About Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego

Located on the Gaslamp Quarter’s waterfront, Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego overlooks San Diego Bay and many rooms offer spectacular views of the Pacific Ocean too. This urban resort defines San Diego’s skyline and is comprised of two stylish towers, the 33-story Seaport Tower and the 40-story Harbor Tower, the latter of which is 497-feet tall, making it the tallest building on the west coast waterfront. Connecting the two towers is a four-story building that boasts a rooftop pool with a 25,000 square-foot deck. The stylish Hyatt includes 76 newly renovated one-and-two-bedroom suites, spa with a full-service salon and an adults-only pool, tennis courts, bay-view pool and deck, a fitness center and several award-winning restaurants and lounges – most all overlooking the bay. It is adjacent to Seaport Village, near Horton Plaza and convenient to San Diego International Airport, San Diego Zoo and Sea World. In 2013, the hotel began a multi-million dollar renovation, with the transformation of all 1,628 guest rooms and suites. The property continued with additional updates to suites, meetings spaces and fitness center in 2014. The next phase of renovations will include food and beverage outlets including the iconic Top of the Hyatt; spa, meeting space and more. The entire project is scheduled to be complete by 2016. To keep up to date with the renovation and see how it’s unfolding, visit or follow #NewMGHyatt. For additional information, please visit the Company’s website at

Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute welcomes five new Trustees

LA JOLLA, Calif., and ORLANDO, Fla., September 18, 2014 – Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham) today announced the election of five new members to its Board of Trustees. The Board will grow to 21 members with the addition of the new trustees.

“I am extremely pleased to welcome these distinguished industry leaders to the Sanford-Burnham Board at this pivotal time,” said Gregory Lucier, chairman of Sanford-Burnham’s Board of Trustees.  “I am confident that their collective knowledge and business expertise will benefit the Institute as we implement our strategic vision to accelerate the translation of basic research discoveries into innovative therapeutics that improve human health.”

The new trustees include:

David W. Down, managing partner, KMPG, LLP.

Donald Jernigan, Ph.D., president and CEO, Adventist Health System; former president and CEO, Florida Hospital and the system’s Florida division.

Papa” Doug Manchester, chairman, Manchester Financial Group; chairman and publisher, U-T San Diego.

Edward R. Schulak, advisory board member, University of Michigan Health System; co-founder Metro International Trade Services, LLC; co-founder LiteLaser, LLC.

Rasesh Thakkar, senior managing director, Tavistock Group.

“Each of these accomplished leaders believes passionately in the value of our research and understands the challenges facing life-science research organizations,” said Kristiina Vuori, M.D., Ph.D., president of Sanford-Burnham. “Their wide-ranging expertise will provide Sanford-Burnham with valuable guidance to successfully navigate those challenges and capitalize on our institutional strengths. We are very excited to have them on the board.”

Biographies for each board member follow below:

About David Down

David (Dave) W. Down has been a managing partner at the San Diego office of KPMG LLP, a Big 4 accounting firm, since 1994. Down joined the San Diego office in 1976 after graduating from San Diego State University and became a partner in 1987. For more than 20 years, Dave has been responsible for client acceptance and retention. He has led all major business development initiatives, and successfully directed human resources, technology, and real estate decisions for the firm.

Dave currently serves on numerous civic and charitable organizations’ board of directors, including Corporate Directors Forum, CONNECT, SDSU’s College of Business Advisory Council, the San Diego County YMCA, the San Diego Theatres, and the Rancho Santa Fe Foundation. Dave has previously served on the boards of The Old Globe, United Way, the Greater San Diego Boys and Girls Club, the San Diego Hall of Champions, the Jr. Seau Foundation, and was a founding member of the board of California State University–San Marcos.


About Donald Jernigan

Donald Jernigan, Ph.D., is president and chief executive officer of Adventist Health System. He formerly was executive vice president of Adventist Health System and CEO of Florida Hospital and the health system’s Florida division, executive vice president of Adventist Health System, and CEO of the Multi-State Hospital Division, president of Tennessee Christian Medical Center, and Adventist Health System’s Tennessee/Georgia region. Jernigan also previously served as senior vice president of Adventist Health System and president of Metroplex Hospital in Killeen, Texas.

Jernigan has a doctor of philosophy degree in physical chemistry from Baylor University and a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry from the University of Texas at Arlington. He is a Diplomate of the American College of Healthcare Executives, chairman of the board of Florida Hospital, and member of the Governor’s Council of the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission. Jernigan has also served on the boards of United Way and several chambers of commerce, as well as many other health-care boards.

About Papa” Doug Manchester

“Papa” Doug is chairman of Manchester Financial Group. He is an industrialist with accomplishments in telecommunications, radio broadcast, medical instrumentation, publishing, and real estate development. Papa Doug is considered father of the San Diego Convention Center after his generous contribution of the property for its development. The completion of the second largest Marriott and Hyatt hotels in the world anchored its success and gave birth to the vast San Diego downtown redevelopment still continuing today.

In addition to the San Diego Marriott Hotel and Marina and the Manchester Grand Hyatt, his investment and development projects include The Grand Del Mar Resort & Spa, Manchester Executive Center, Manchester Financial Building, and the Whitetail Lodge and Golf Club, and soon a convention center hotel in Austin, Texas. Papa Doug was the catalyst for the biotech cluster at Torrey Pines. Currently, he is chairman and publisher of the San Diego Union-Tribune. He previously served on our Board from 2004-2010.

About Edward R. Schulak

Edward R. Schulak is an architect, entrepreneur, national real estate developer, inventor, and international business leader in both foreign trade and commodities. Schulak graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design with degrees in both Fine Arts and Architecture. He also attended St. Johns College of Classical Studies and the Rackham College of Graduate Studies at The University of Michigan. He was certified by the National Council of Architectural Registration Boards and licensed as an architect in fourteen states.

He has numerous patents in energy conservation and refrigeration, is published, and has presented papers for the American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-conditioning Engineers. Schulak was co-founder of Metro International Trade Services LLC. The firm is one of the largest logistics and warehouse providers for metal in the world. He also co-founded LiteLaser, LLC, a company that developed a new generation of CO2 lasers, and International Airport Centers, which pioneered and developed air cargo parks throughout the United States. In addition, he has served on numerous charitable, academic, and business boards.

About Rasesh Thakkar

Rasesh “Sesh” Thakkar is senior managing director of Tavistock Group and a member of its board of directors. For the past 20-plus years, Sesh has focused on mergers and acquisitions, operations, and strategic planning for the group. He helps determine overall strategy, targets sectors for investment, and negotiates acquisitions and sales, and transitions acquisitions into the group’s holdings. He has been a key leader in the cities he has lived in and, most recently, has been the leading force in forming Lake Nona’s Medical City, which the Tavistock group owns. He has lived in the United States, South America, and Europe on behalf of the Tavistock.

Currently, he serves on the board of trustees for the Central Florida Partnership, the Governors Council of the Metro Orlando Economic Development Commission, and the board of governors for M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Orlando. Sesh is also a member of the state of Florida Governor’s advisory council known as The Florida Council of 100, the board of trustees of the Tavistock Foundation, and the board of directors of the UCF Foundation.


About Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute 

Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute is dedicated to discovering the fundamental molecular causes of disease and devising the innovative therapies of tomorrow. Sanford-Burnham takes a collaborative approach to medical research with major programs in cancer, neurodegeneration and stem cells, diabetes, and infectious, inflammatory, and childhood diseases. The Institute is recognized for its National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center, its NIH-designated Neuroscience Center Cores, and expertise in drug discovery technologies. Sanford-Burnham is a nonprofit, independent institute that employs more than 1,000 scientists and staff in San Diego (La Jolla), Calif., and Orlando (Lake Nona), Fla. For more information, visit us at

Sanford-Burnham can also be found on Facebook at and on Twitter @sanfordburnham.


Chargers’ QB Philip Rivers Inspired by U-T San Diego Column to Help Lead “Passing It On” Campaign

Chargers QB and U-T San Diego sports columnist Kevin Acee Donating $1 for Every Passing Yard this Season to Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego through the “Passing It On” Campaign.

San Diego, CA. (September 16, 2014)When U-T San Diego sports columnist Kevin Acee crafted his April 28 column “Helping Kids, Families with Some Passes,” he hoped that the story about two-year-old Stephen Russell – who loves Cheetos, is insatiably curious, and will almost certainly undergo a third gruelling heart surgery before the age of five — would inspire readers to dig deep and donate to the Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego, which has been a haven for Stephen’s family. One of those readers agreed to join Acee in the campaign. That was San Diego Chargers’ quarterback Philip Rivers, who along with Acee is leading the “Passing It On” campaign.

The Passing It On campaign challenges Chargers fans to support San Diego’s Ronald McDonald House Charities by pledging anywhere from 10 cents to $1 or more for every passing yard that Rivers completes this season. Rivers and Acee have each pledged $1 per yard, respectively, and the Walter J. and Betty C. Zable Foundation has generously agreed to match funds raised up to $50,000.

San Diego’s Ronald McDonald House relies on support from the community to continue to provide a ‘home away from home’ for families like the Russells, who need a place to regroup, recharge and find some normalcy in an otherwise chaotic time,” said Chuck Day, president and CEO of Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego, which was founded in 1980. “We are so grateful for the support from our community, including Kevin Acee and Philip Rivers for making `Passing It On’ possible and, of course, for the generous matching gift from the Walter J. and Betty C. Zable Foundation. Because of this outstanding leadership and support, we can continue to provide hope and healing for the families we serve.”

“As a parent, I know how scary having a sick child can be — but that pales in comparison to what Stephen’s family has endured day after day,” said Kevin Acee, who has since published a follow-up column ‘Helping Philip Rivers Pass It On.’ “I have been so moved by the incredible people at the Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego, and it’s a privilege to help spread awareness and raise funds. And as for Philip Rivers, his integrity and leadership are an inspiration, and he was completely on board from the first moment we spoke about this worthy cause.”

Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego is a great community partner of the U-T and we couldn’t be more proud of this cause. We are very pleased with Kevin Acee and Philip Rivers for supporting this initiative and creating even greater awareness for the community to get involved. We look forward to tracking the total yards and amount of donations raised throughout the season,” said Mike Hodges, U-T San Diego President and COO.

Chargers fans and all other San Diegans can be part of The Passing It On campaign by visiting The website also includes a special video featuring interviews with Philip Rivers, Kevin Acee, and members of the Russell family including Stephen.

For all other information including media inquiries, please contact Stephanie Brown, Senior Director, Marketing and Public Relations of U-T San Diego at 619-823-9794 or or Price Adams of Nuffer, Smith & Tucker at 619-296-0605 or

About Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego

Founded in 1980, Ronald McDonald House Charities of San Diego provides a “home away from home” to families with children being treated for serious, often life-threatening conditions at local hospitals. San Diego’s Ronald McDonald House was specifically designed to meet the needs of families – including 47 overnight bedrooms and a Family Care Center meeting daytime needs with a kitchen serving warm meals, showers, laundry facilities, nap rooms and a children’s play area. With a sense of normalcy restored, the nearly 15,000 family members the Ronald McDonald House serves each year can focus their energy on helping their hospitalized child heal. Charity Navigator has given the organization the highest rating available – four stars – based on the charity’s financial health, accountability and transparency. To learn more, visit

About U-T San Diego

The San Diego Union-Tribune, LLC, owner of the 145-year-old U-T San Diego, is San Diego’s leading media company and its most comprehensive source of news, entertainment and information in the region. Each week, products are delivered to more than 96 percent of all San Diego County households through its integrated media portfolio: the Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper, U-T San Diego; the website,; Sunday’s Best; The Night + Day, DiscoverSD and weekly entertainment guides; Spanish-language products and Vida Latina-San Diego; U-TTV, an Emmy award-winning on-demand video news source; and hyper-local community papers, U-T Community Press.

Learn more at

U-T San Diego Sponsoring 2014 Honor Bowl in Oceanside, CA Sep. 4-6

honor bowl logo

Annual event features top-ranked high school teams and honors U.S Armed Forces and Military veterans.

San Diego, CA. (September 4, 2014) – U-T San Diego, the region’s leading on-demand source for comprehensive news, entertainment and information, announced today that it is proudly sponsoring The 2014 Honor Bowl: an annual event that honors the service and sacrifices of U.S Armed Forces and Military veterans.

The event will commence with a ribbon-cutting ceremony in conjunction with the Oceanside Chamber of Commerce, which will take place at Oceanside’s Springhill Suites by Marriott on September 4.

The games will be played on September 5-6, as 10 top-ranked high school teams take to the Oceanside High School gridiron in what organizers believe are among the most exciting interstate match-ups in recent memory, including: #25 Helix vs. #24 Del Oro (9/5 at 5pm), #19 Oceanside vs. #7 Mission Viejo (9/5 at 8pm), #20 Orange Lutheran vs. # 6 Corona Centennial (9/6 at 12pm), #16 Cathedral Catholic vs. #13 Oaks Christian (9/6 at 4pm), and #11 Sierra Gardena vs. #1 Bellevue, WA (9/6 at 7:30pm). All times are PDT.

Plus, all games will be broadcast live by Time Warner Cable SportsNet, and accompanied by ongoing Twitter updates (@honorgroup; #HonorBowl) and Facebook updates (

“U-T San Diego is proud to support The Honor Bowl, which plays an important role in honoring and supporting the dedicated men and women of the U.S Armed Forces and Military,” commented Papa Doug Manchester, U-T San Diego’s Chairman and Publisher. “The incredible support for this event also helps demonstrate what makes San Diego County such a special place. The way that we can come together to support our veterans in a united manner is remarkable – and inspiring.”

The U-T Honor Bowl, whose motto is “It’s More than Just a Football Game!,” is produced by The Honor Group, a non-profit organization whose mission is to educate student athletes, coaches and the community about the needs of military veterans, empower veterans to transform their lives by serving others and directly impacting their communities, and equip veterans to find resources that can help their transition to civilian life.

“We are extremely excited about our second year partnership with U-T San Diego,” commented Mark Soto, Executive Director and Founder of The Honor Group. “Bringing together students and the community through sport to raise awareness of the sacrifice of our veterans is core to The Honor Group, and we are grateful to Papa Doug and the entire U-T San Diego team for helping to support this cause.”

More information on The Honor Group is available at More information on The 2014 Honor Bowl, including stadium, accommodation and online ticket purchase details, is available at

For all other information including media inquiries, contact Stephanie Brown, U-T San Diego’s Senior Director of Marketing and Public Relations, at 619-823-9794 or

About U-T San Diego

The San Diego Union-Tribune, LLC, owner of the 145-year-old U-T San Diego, is San Diego’s leading media company and its most comprehensive source of news, entertainment and information in the region. Each week, products are delivered to more than 96 percent of all San Diego County households through its integrated media portfolio: the Pulitzer Prize-winning newspaper, U-T San Diego; the website,; Sunday’s Best; The Night + Day, DiscoverSD and weekly entertainment guides; Spanish-language products Enlace and Vida Latina-San Diego; U-T TV, an Emmy award-winning on-demand video news platform; and hyper-local community papers, U-T Community Press.

Learn more at