KANSAS CITY, KAN. — Community leaders across Kansas have joined the fight against cancer. They are volunteer members of the newly formed Midwest Cancer Alliance Funding Partners, which will hold its first meeting Feb. 11 in Hays. The council’s goal is to generate awareness of the importance of the Midwest Cancer Alliance and to raise $5 million to further its mission.
The Midwest Cancer Alliance links The University of Kansas Cancer Center with a network of 19 member hospitals and research organizations across Kansas and western Missouri. These institutions have united to bring cancer research, care and support professionals together to advance the quality and reach of cancer care, prevention, early detection and survivorship in the Heartland.
Inaugural members of Midwest Cancer Alliance Funding Partners include:
- Chuck and Diane Frickey, Oberlin. Chuck is an attorney; Diane is a retired social worker;
- Dave Hendricks, Emporia, director of Emporia State University’s Memorial Union;
- Peggy Johnson, Wichita, longtime advocate for cancer care and prevention;
- Mark Mingenback, Great Bend, executive director, business development, strategy and foundation for St. Rose Ambulatory and Surgery Center;
- Liz Sosa, Garden City, general manager Inkt Graphics, owner Epitome Enterprises;
- Keith Swinehart, McPherson, community volunteer;
- Alan Townsend, Goodland, owner of Townsend Farms;
- Barbara Wasinger, chair, Hays, Ellis County commissioner.
Dr. Roy Jensen, director of The University of Kansas Cancer Center, said that as the cancer center moves forward toward achieving status as a National Cancer Institute comprehensive cancer center, the Midwest Cancer Alliance will take on even greater importance.
“Comprehensive status is really an assessment of how well you are reaching out to and connecting with your community,” said Jensen. “The Midwest Cancer Alliance is the outreach arm of the cancer center, and it is how we plan on making a difference in the lives of cancer patients all across our region. This funding council is going to be critically important in assuring that we have the resources to do just that.”
Midwest Cancer Alliance Funding Partners is a council of the Advancement Board for the University of Kansas Medical Center. The Advancement Board is an advisory group of more than 80 appointed members. The board represents the objectives of the University of Kansas Medical Center, The University of Kansas Hospital and The University of Kansas Physicians, collectively known as the academic medical center.
The University of Kansas Cancer Center is a partnership that includes cancer research and health care professionals associated with KU Medical Center and The University of Kansas Hospital in Kansas City, Kan.; KU’s Lawrence campus; KU School of Medicine-Wichita; and the members of the Midwest Cancer Alliance.
Gifts for the Midwest Cancer Alliance will count toward Far Above: The Campaign for Kansas, the university’s $1.2 billion comprehensive fundraising campaign. Far Above seeks to educate future leaders, advance medicine, accelerate discovery and drive economic growth to seize the opportunities of the future.
The campaign is managed by KU Endowment, the independent, nonprofit organization serving as the official fundraising and fund-management organization for KU. Founded in 1891, KU Endowment was the first foundation of its kind at a U.S. public university.