Over 300 members of The Pap Corps filled the ballroom of Boca West Country Club for their annual check-reveal breakfast. The event, which marks the end of the fiscal year for the nonprofit organization, is a joyous celebration featuring inspiring speeches and the donation of a huge check to Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center.
This year’s donation totaled $3.6 million, which represents a year’s worth of fundraising by the 53 chapters of The Corps.
“This event truly represents the unique power of The Pap Corps,” said CEO David Bakelman. “Throughout the year, each chapter dedicates themselves to raising as much money as possible for cancer research, so at this event, we can witness the dynamic results of their combined efforts. We are so proud of all our members and the incredible impact they have on the fight against cancer.”
Bakelman, who took the helm as the new CEO last summer, has been spearheading the plan to make the 66-year-old nonprofit an even more effective and powerful fundraising organization. During the event, he addressed several of the advances The Corps has made in the past few months as it prepares to increase its yearly fundraising goals to meet their pledged donation to Sylvester.
Providing inspiration, speakers including Dr. Stephen Nimer, Director of Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center and Erin Kobetz, Ph.D, M.P.H, Associate Director for Population Science and Cancer Disparity, shared some of the incredible advances in cancer research and prevention that Sylvester has recently accomplished. In addition, Nimer rallied the audience with the news that in September, Sylvester will be applying to become a National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated cancer center.
While the doctors’ speeches energized the audience, it was cancer survivor Robert Wolk, who stirred everyone’s hearts. Wolk shared his difficult journey to find proper treatment for his rare cancer at various centers, until finding his life-saving treatment at Sylvester.
“Robert’s story resonated so deeply with our members,” said Linda Moses, president of The Pap Corps. “Because it personifies our mission. We work every day to give hope to the thousands upon thousands of people facing a cancer diagnosis that new treatments and new cures will give them another shot at life. When we hear from survivors like Robert, we become even more empowered to earn our title as the Champions for Cancer Research.”