FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
September 21, 2015
Sandra Lee, Dr. Siddartha Mukherjee, Sharon Percy Rockefeller and Franki Roberts receive awards from Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program (photos included)
Washington, DC – Celebrities graced the Hill on Thursday, September 17th in honor of the 23rd Annual Action for Cancer Awareness Awards. The luncheon event, hosted by the Prevent Cancer Foundation’s Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program, attracted an audience of celebrities, diplomats and a bipartisan, bicameral group of Members of Congress and spouses.
This year’s theme, Utilizing Your Platform, was prominent as award winners were recognized for using their unique platforms to promote the message of cancer prevention and early detection. Award winners included television personality Sandra Lee, author Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee, President of WETA Sharon Percy Rockefeller and Congressional spouse Franki Roberts. Fox News National Security Correspondent Jennifer Griffin served as the event’s Master of Ceremonies.
The Prevent Cancer Foundation and Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program focus on cancers that can be prevented in many instances through healthy lifestyle choices and cancer screenings or detected early when treatment is most successful. Research shows that more than 50 percent of cancer cases are preventable with the knowledge we have today.
Honored for Leadership in Prevention this year:
Sandra Lee was presented the Excellence in Cancer Awareness Award for spreading awareness to a broad audience about cancer prevention and early detection following her own cancer diagnosis in May 2015. Ms. Lee is a multi-Emmy® and Gracie award-winner and an internationally acclaimed expert in all things kitchen, home and style. She is the editor-in-chief of Sandra Lee Magazine and the host of four highly-rated culinary and home entertaining programs on The Food Network, The Cooking Channel and HGTV. Ms. Lee, at age 48, initially broke the news of her breast cancer diagnosis on “Good Morning America” to anchor (and past award recipient) Robin Roberts. On that show, Ms. Lee urged viewers to stop watching the segment and “instead go schedule a mammogram,” since her own routine annual test brought the life-altering news.
Siddhartha Mukherjee, M.D., Ph.D., was awarded the Distinguished Service in Media Award for media leadership. Dr. Mukherjee is an accomplished oncologist, cancer researcher and professor. He was honored as the esteemed author of “The Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer,” which was awarded the 2011 Pulitzer Prize for General Nonfiction. His book features cancer as the main character and chronicles its lifespan, taking readers on a 4,000 year journey from early discoveries to our present-day understanding of these diseases. “The Emperor of All Maladies” has educated a broad and international audience and has reignited conversations about how to best fight this formidable enemy.
Sharon Percy Rockefeller was given a Special Recognition Award for her role in translating Dr. Mukherjee’s book into film. Ms. Rockefeller has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of WETA and has been a leader in public media for more than 30 years. After being diagnosed with stage IIIB colorectal cancer in 2005, Ms. Rockefeller read Dr. Mukherjee’s book during treatment in 2011. She contacted longtime WETA production partner Ken Burns, and together, they brought the project to the American public. Ms. Rockefeller is married to former Senator John D. “Jay” Rockefeller IV of West Virginia.
Franki Roberts (Mrs. Pat Roberts, Kansas) was awarded the Congressional Families Leadership Award. Mrs. Roberts has a long-standing commitment to raising awareness and cancer prevention in her home state. She and Senator Roberts have served as Honorary Co-Chairs of the Prevent Cancer Foundation’s health awareness and cancer screening booth at the annual Kansas State Fair since his first election to the Senate in 1997. The widely attended state fair provides a perfect opportunity to educate and reach many people in the community.
Action for Cancer Award winners, L to R: Congressional spouse Franki Roberts, television personality Sandra Lee, author and oncologist Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee, WETA President Sharon Percy Rockefeller.
Fox News Nationals Security Correspondent and cancer survivor Jennifer Griffin serves as Master of Ceremonies.
An emotional Sandra Lee accepts the award for Excellence in Cancer Awareness and urges the audience to go and get their mammograms.
About the Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program
The Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Program began in 1991 as a partnership between the Prevent Cancer Foundation and the Congressional Club, a bipartisan organization of spouses of Members of the House, Senate, Cabinet and Supreme Court. Spouses active in the program share an interest in advancing cancer prevention, early detection and education. For more information, visit www.congressionalfamilies.org.
About the Prevent Cancer Foundation
The mission of the Prevent Cancer Foundation is to save lives through cancer prevention and early detection. Founded in 1985, the Foundation has provided $140 million in support of cancer prevention and early detection research, education, outreach and advocacy nationwide. For more information, please visit www.preventcancer.org.