BOSTON – Showing Celtic pride and all-around good sportsmanship, the 9th Annual High Hopes Gala kicked off on World Diabetes Day with the presentation of the prestigious Heroes Among Us Award to Joslin Diabetes Center’s Dr. Lori Laffel, during the November 14 Celtics/Nuggets game. Dr. Laffel, Chief of the Pediatric and Adolescent Section at Joslin, was the face of the Joslin all-star team of doctors who were instrumental in the care and treatment of Walker Allen, Ray Allen’s young son who was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes just as the Celtics entered the NBA Finals last spring.
Happily, the Celtic green machine went on to win the NBA title and the Joslin dream team of doctors and professionals provided top-notch care and education to Walker and the entire Allen family.
Ranch C. Kimball, president and CEO of Joslin Diabetes Center, explains, «Like the Allens, the reality is, just about everyone will be touched by diabetes in some way during their lifetime. More than 24 million people in the U.S. have diabetes and another 57 million Americans are to have pre-diabetes. Thanks to the generous support of donors and volunteers, we truly have a sporting chance of beating this disease.»
Everyday, the Joslin team works to improve the lives of people with diabetes – young and old – as well as find paths to prevent and cure the disease.
Proceeds from the High Hopes Gala will benefit Joslin’s High Hopes Fund. Among other things, this fund supports care for a child recently diagnosed with diabetes; pregnancy care for a woman with diabetes trying to have her first child, and the astounding efforts of a team of researchers, tirelessly working to uncover the cause of diabetes, as well as other life-saving treatment and research toward a cure.
The High Hopes Fund was established in 1993 by Academy Award-winning lyricist Sammy Cahn, who wrote the song «High Hopes.» The former Joslin patient’s goal was to provide hope and encouragement to people with diabetes, while supporting the world-leading diabetes center’s fight against a disease that affects so many. His legacy lives on today through the High Hopes Fund, which provides critical resources for Joslin’s efforts to beat diabetes.
In addition to the money raised at November 15’s black-tie Gala, Joslin also celebrated the recent receipt of $7.2 million in special gifts from two different institutions.
* $3 million from the Eli Lilly and Company Foundation to help fund studies that will investigate the underlying causes of obesity and insulin resistance – two leading risk factors for diabetes and heart disease.
* $4.2 million from the estate of Mettina R. Proctor, a cousin of Dr. Elliott P. Joslin, to support the High Hopes Fund and the important care, education and research Joslin provides.
Kimball observes, «The generosity of foundations and individuals is critical to Joslin’s mission and research efforts in the fight against the global diabetes pandemic which affects more than 200 million people worldwide. We are incredibly grateful that Eli Lilly and the Proctor family have chosen to support our important care, education and research efforts.»
An astounding 24 million people in the United States have diabetes. This is an epidemic that crosses all ages, economic levels and races, affecting many adults and children. As the cost and incidence of diabetes continue to increase, Joslin Diabetes Center is the one hope for a world without this disease. Joslin, the world’s preeminent diabetes research and clinical care organization, will continue to meet the ever-changing challenges of diabetes until it realizes its mission of a world without diabetes. All proceeds from the Gala benefit