SEATTLE — August 12, 2013 — More than 3,500 enthusiastic patients, survivors and supporters gathered in Seattle last month to participate in the 19th annual Swedish presents SummeRun & Walk for ovarian cancer. Thanks to energized and proactive participants, this year’s event raised more than $558,000 in support of ovarian cancer research.
The SummeRun & Walk celebrates and remembers the lives of those who have been impacted by ovarian cancer. It is the Northwest’s largest community event to raise awareness and vital funds for ovarian cancer. Since its inception, the SummeRun has raised more than $6 million for medical research into the treatment, early detection, and prevention of this disease.
“We are thrilled and humbled by the level of support the SummeRun continues to receive each year, and this year is no exception,” said Clint Burwell, executive director of the Rivkin Center. “Every dollar raised from the SummeRun makes a difference and makes it possible for the Rivkin Center to continue to advance research to find a cure and establish an early detection test.”
In addition to being a unique community event, the annual SummeRun also provides a fundraising opportunity that supports the mission for the Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research. Proceeds from previous SummeRun’s have helped fund research on promising biomarkers to aid early detection of ovarian cancer and the continuation of the Ovarian Cancer Early Detection program for women who are at high risk of ovarian cancer. Funds have also helped to introduce new chemotherapy treatment options for recurrent cancer patients, as well as create new imaging technology to aid diagnosis of ovarian cancer.
The Rivkin Center was founded in 1996 by Saul Rivkin, M.D. following the loss of his wife, Marsha, to ovarian cancer. With his commitment to finding a cure, Dr. Rivkin helped make the Rivkin Center one of the leading catalysts for national and international efforts in all fields of ovarian cancer research. The Rivkin Center has raised and invested nearly $14 million in research since its inception and this number continues to increase. 100 percent of SummeRun proceeds, including registration fees, go directly to benefit the Rivkin Center.
Dr. Rivkin retired as a medical oncologist from Swedish Medical Center on July 1st after nearly 50 years of practice. He continues to be recognized nationally for his dedication to advancing ovarian cancer treatment options. Dr. Rivkin was also honored for his remarkable work during the awards ceremony at the SummeRun. Additionally, Washington State Governor, Jay Inslee, recently honored Dr. Rivkin with a certificate of recognition for his accomplishments throughout the years.
The success of this year’s SummeRun can be attributed to the team fundraising model – keeping people engaged and inspiring a little friendly competition to be the top fundraising team. This year that honor went to Carole’s Cause, which raised more than $46,000.
The date for next year’s event will be announced shortly. Details will be posted online as soon as it is determined. The SummeRun has come and gone, but the race continues. For those who would still like to participate, supporters can donate by visiting www.SummeRun.org.
Seventeen years ago, when the Marsha Rivkin Center was first conceived, there were few research organizations dedicated to finding a solution to ovarian cancer. Ovarian cancer, while being the deadliest gynecological cancer, was and still is greatly overshadowed in the research community by other more pervasive cancers, such as breast cancer.
As such, the standard treatment and mortality rate for ovarian cancer has remained unchanged in the past 50 years. A truly effective and inexpensive early detection test has yet to be developed (a test similar to mammography for breast cancer or the Pap smear for cervical cancer).The Rivkin Center’s founder, Dr. Saul Rivkin, M.D., faced these daunting statistics on a very personal level, not only in treating countless women as a medical oncologist, but in 1993 when he lost his wife to ovarian cancer.
In honor of his wife and his five daughters, he created the Marsha Rivkin Center in 1996 to advance research focused solely on ovarian cancer. Because he and his daughters were runners, the initial funding came from an annual fun-run, the SummeRun & Walk for Ovarian Cancer Research. Since the run started 19 years ago, the event has raised more than $6 million for research and screening.
About the Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research
Since its inception in 1996, the Marsha Rivkin Center for Ovarian Cancer Research has been a major catalyst for national and international research efforts aimed at finding solutions to ovarian cancer. A 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, the Marsha Rivkin Center looks beyond institutional boundaries and works collaboratively to find a cure for ovarian cancer. Founded by renowned Swedish Cancer Institute medical oncologist Saul Rivkin, M.D., in memory of his wife who succumbed to ovarian cancer, the Marsha Rivkin Center is a joint partnership between Swedish Medical Center and Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. The Center is dedicated to saving lives and reducing suffering through improved treatment, early detection and prevention of ovarian cancer. For more information visit www.rivkin.org, www.facebook.com/rivkincenter or call (206) 215-6200.
Swedish has grown over the last 103 years to become the largest non-profit health provider in the Greater Seattle area. It is comprised of five hospital campuses (First Hill, Cherry Hill, Ballard, Edmonds and Issaquah); ambulatory care centers in Redmond and Mill Creek; and Swedish Medical Group, a network of more than 100 primary-care and specialty clinics located throughout the Greater Puget Sound area. In addition to general medical and surgical care including robotic-assisted surgery, Swedish is known as a regional referral center, providing specialized treatment in areas such as cardiovascular care, cancer care, neuroscience, orthopedics, high-risk obstetrics, pediatric specialties, organ transplantation and clinical research. For more information, visit www.swedish.org, www.swedishcares.org, www.facebook.com/swedishmedicalcenter, or www.twitter.com/swedish.
Swedish is affiliated with Providence Health & Services, which is a Catholic, not-for-profit organization founded by the Sisters of Providence in 1856 with 32 hospitals, 350 physician clinics and more than 64,000 employees across five states. Based in Renton, Wash., Providence Health & Services provides strategic and management services to integrated health-care systems in Alaska, California, Montana, Oregon and Washington state. For more information, visit www.providence.org.
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