UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center to Receive $170,000

San Diego, CA – The Vision of Children Foundation (VOC) will present UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center with a $170,000 check to aid in research on rare and aggressive breast cancer. The money represents half of the funds raised at a Holiday High Tea event that featured Ann Romney as the keynote speaker. VOC is using the other half to bolster its research on finding cures for hereditary vision disorders. The check will be presented on May 27, 2014 at 3 p.m. at Moores Cancer Center. Media should check in at the security desk in the lobby.

The survival rate for patients with rare and aggressive breast cancer is less than 50 percent over five years. Certain dormant tumor cells hidden in the body can metastasize, or spread, even years after the successful removal of a breast tumor. Such tumor dormancy in breast cancer remains poorly understood, thus presenting challenges to both experimental investigation and clinical management of breast cancer. Moores Cancer Center will direct the funds to research being conducted by Jing Yang, Ph.D., Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Pediatrics at the UC San Diego School of Medicine, who hopes to uncover the signaling pathways that control breast tumor metastasis during dormancy.

“Funding transformative research, like that of Dr. Yang, will lead to breakthroughs in cancer care that will help us save the lives of loved ones right here in San Diego and around the world,” said Scott M. Lippman, MD, Director of UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center. “At a time when there are fewer dollars available for cancer research, community support like that of Vision of Children is helping us to continue to move leading-edge research from the bench to the bedside.”

More than 600 guests attended the holiday fundraiser, called “Visions of Success – From Research to Reality,” at the Grand Del Mar on December 9, 2013. Romney, a breast cancer survivor, health advocate and dedicated supporter of vision health, spoke about the critical need for medical research to cure breast cancer and vision diseases. The event was spearheaded by VOC’s Co-Founder Vivian Hardage and Wanda Garner. Garner, a cancer workshop facilitator and philanthropic fundraiser, and her husband, biotech leader, Cam Garner, are strong supporters of medical research efforts in San Diego.

Hardage conceived the joint fundraiser as a way to raise awareness about the importance of medical research to find cures for breast cancer and genetic eye disorders, two causes that hit particularly close to her heart. She and her husband, Sam Hardage, founded VOC in 1991, after their son Chase was diagnosed with ocular albinism type 1. She is a three-time breast-cancer survivor who worked closely with the American Cancer Society to ensure that the funds would be used by a San Diego research institution. “I’ve personally experienced the quality of care and witnessed the caliber of the research at Moores Cancer Center,” she said. “We are thrilled to be able to contribute to such a worthy institution. Research, such as that being performed by Dr. Yang, is critical to finding a cure.”

The event was underwritten by Title Sponsor Papa Doug Manchester, real estate developer and publisher of the U-T San Diego. Other key sponsors included: Midway Jeep, Chrysler, Dodge and Ram; Robert Procop Exceptional Jewels; Life Technologies; Dr. Seuss Fund at the San Diego Foundation; and Fashion Valley.

The following people are expected to attend the check presentation on May 27:

  • Wanda Garner, Co-Chair, Visions of Success
  • Samuel A. Hardage, Chairman, Vision of Children Foundation
  • Vivian L. Hardage, Co-Chair, Visions of Success
  • Andria Kinnear – Executive Director, Vision of Children Foundation
  • Dr. Scott M. Lippman, Director, UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
  • Papa Doug Manchester, Publisher
  • Dr. Barbara Parker, Deputy Director for Clinical Affairs, UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
  • Jennifer Berg Sobotka – Vice President, Corporate and Distinguished Partners, American Cancer Society California Division
  • Dr. Jing Yang, Associate Professor of Pharmacology and Pediatrics, UC San Diego Researcher at Moores Cancer Center

Established in 1991, the Vision of Children Foundation is a non-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization dedicated to curing hereditary childhood blindness and other vision disorders, and improving the quality of life of visually impaired children and their families www.visionofchildren.org

Established in 1978, the UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center is one of just 41 National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States, and the only one in the San Diego region. Such centers are prominent among the leading institutions in the nation dedicated to scientific innovation and clinical excellence. This designation is reserved for centers with the highest achievements in cancer research, clinical care, education and community contributions. Studies show that outcomes are better at NCI-designated centers. www.cancer.ucsd.edu

U-T San Diego Campaign Succeeds In Raising $1,000,000,

San Diego, CA  – May 22, 2014 –  A project that began with a birthday cake, candles, and a large challenge to the community will close this Thursday with  applause for a job well done, goals met, and a community united. U-T San Diego’s Finish The Fight campaign launched with a pledge by senior leadership of the news organization to raise $1 million in support of the Society’s mission to fund research toward the defeat of cancer, while easing suffering and raising awareness. One year later, the precedent-setting campaign is a success on all accounts. The campaign exceeded goal, increased awareness of the Society’s mission, and forged new community ties between a variety of groups.

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Manchester honored as 2013 Nice Guy of the Year

“Papa” Doug Manchester paid humble tribute to his family, his faith and the many philanthropists who came before him as he accepted the 2013 “Nice Guy of the Year” award Saturday at the Grand Del Mar Resort.

The U-T San Diego publisher was this year’s honoree at a black-tie gala hosted by the Nice Guys, an all-volunteer group made up of 140 local philanthropists and business leaders who raise money for needy San Diegans. With no paid staff or overhead, all of the money raised — $14.7 million since 1979 — goes to local charities and individual recipients. Each year, the membership (which includes men and women) chooses a “Nice Guy” based on his or her record of giving. Manchester’s philanthropic efforts date back 40 years and totals more than $40 million.

“I am humbled and give thanks and praise to God for all who are here tonight for the wonderful work you do to benefit the less fortunate,” he said in a brief speech before a sold-out crowd of 550. “You all have given so generously of your time, talent and treasury.”

Manchester succeeds local developer/investor Ernest Rady, a longtime friend who described being chosen as 2012 “Nice Guy of the Year” as “one of the most moving things that has happened to me in my life.” Rady said this year’s award couldn’t have gone to a nicer guy.

“I’ve known Doug for four decades and I’ve watched him change the skyline of San Diego as well as do many, many good deeds for others that go unnoticed and underappreciated,” Rady said.

Manchester, 71, has a long history of giving to local causes, including $5 million to his alma mater, San Diego State University, and $5 million to Wake Forest University. He has also given endowments, donations and scholarships to the University of San Diego, Cathedral Catholic High, the Child Abuse Prevention Foundation, Jenna Druck Foundation, Preuss School, Monarch School, Polinsky Children’s Center, San Diego Diocesan Ministries, Boys & Girls Club of San Diego County, Scripps Memorial Hospital, YMCA of San Diego County, Alexis de Tocqueville Society of United Way, National Conference of Christians and Jews, Billy Graham Crusade, USS Midway Museum and more.

Manchester and U-T CEO John Lynch, a 1998 Nice Guy of the Year recipient, have also committed this year to raising $1 million for the American Cancer Society.

It was Manchester’s efforts to help local cancer patients that first brought him to the attention of the Nice Guys group, according to President Skip Hodgetts. Nice Guys arranged last year for a cancer patient in Alpine to fly to New York for treatment and in the process discovered that Manchester was also interested in helping local cancer causes.

“San Diego doesn’t truly understand what an iconic philanthropic gentleman Papa Doug Manchester really is,” Hodgetts said. “We see his name on buildings … but his contributions to the community go far beyond that.”

Among those in attendance Saturday were Father Joe Carroll, 1990’s Nice Guy of the Year, who said Manchester was the first local donor to step forward with money when he was building the Joan Kroc Center at St. Vincent de Paul Village in 1987.

“And I just hit him up again for more money recently to buy all new dishes and tableware for the center,” Carroll said. “Once I got my hooks in him, I wasn’t letting him off the hook. He’s been wonderful to us.”

Bill Lynch, who was Nice Guy of the Year in 2003, said the organization is proud to have Manchester join the ranks.

“He’s been around year after year, always giving to the community,” Bill Lynch said.

The evening’s program, hosted by U-T TV co-hosts Scott Kaplan and Amber Mesker, included a short tribute film on Manchester’s achievements, a performance by the Marine Corps Band from the Marine Corps Recruit Depot and live entertainment produced by Bonnie Foster, in conjunction with her parents, Marin and Wayne Foster, who are longtime family friends of Manchester.

The guests dined on sea bass and braised short rib in the ballroom of the Grand Del Mar, which Manchester Financial Group developed and owns.

Gala chair Debora Giaquinta said the gala is expected to raise more than $400,000. Twenty-five percent of the proceeds will go toward Manchester’s charity of choice, the American Cancer Society, 25 percent will go toward the Nice Guys’ new cancer fund and the rest will go to its regular charity programs.

Last year, the group gave $1.24 million to local charities, including $640,000 for its Victory Fund for wounded service members and their families. Nice Guys also provides one-time donations to needy San Diegans who have fallen between society’s cracks.

“We give people a hand up, not a handout, to help them become whole taxpaying citizens again,” Hodgetts said. “Papa Doug is someone who wants to do the same thing and is a great guy to have in the Nice Guy of the Year program.”

Papa Doug Manchester Day

On his 70th birthday this past May, Papa Doug was honored to receive his own celebratory day from Ron Roberts and the San Diego County Board of Supervisors. In an official proclamation, Supervisor Roberts and the Board declared May 31, 2012 “Papa Doug Manchester Day” across the county.

Papa Doug is commended for his leadership and dedication to San Diego and its people. Outlining notable ventures including Manchester Financial Group, the San Diego Convention Center, and the innovations at U-T San Diego; the proclamation lauds Papa Doug as a “true industrialist” with “urban vision” and gives a peek at his plans for further downtown San Diego development. The proclamation also credits Papa Doug for his numerous charitable contributions to SDSU, Scripps Memorial Hospital, the Monarch School, and many other local organizations.