MySweetWishList: Hope Lodge Dallas

According to Hope Lodge Capital Campaign Co-Chairs Jennifer and Richard Dix,

Richard and Jennifer Dix (File photo)

“When we were asked to chair the Hope Lodge Capital Campaign, the only question we had was ‘Why hasn’t this already been built?’  Did you know that Dallas is ranked #7 in the nation for cancer care?  What a point of pride for our city and an amazing resource, not only for the residents of DFW, but for the thousands of people who travel annually to Dallas for cancer care.  

“Hope Lodge is the missing component for these patients and their families. It is the ultimate resource-providing patients and caregivers a free place to stay during treatment.  Financial burdens are reduced and patients and caregivers can focus on their priority-getting well.

“We fervently believe Dallas needs this vital asset. Our wish is that everyone who has the capacity to support this important campaign will dig deep and give! 

“Hope Lodge will be constructed on a parcel of land southeast of Baylor Charles A. Sammons Cancer Center at the intersection of Elm and Hall.   The use of the land, valued at approximately $4 million, was donated by Baylor Scott And White Health.

“Hope Lodge Dallas will include 50 suites for guests and caregivers, an outdoor garden, common kitchens, dining room, common living area, meditation room, laundry facilities, library with computer access, meeting space and access to transportation to all cancer treatments center in the Dallas area.

“As we became actively engaged in studying Hope Lodges across the nation, one fact we loved emerged:  those served by Hope Lodge always give back, either financially or through volunteer service.  This is a powerful testament to the dramatic impact that the Hope Lodge Dallas will have providing compassion and care for those who enter its doors. 

“Please join us in worthy mission by visiting cancer.org/hopelodgedallas.”

-By Jennifer and Richard Dix, Hope Lodge Capital Campaign co-chairs

Cattle Baronesses Gather At Bistro 31 To Kick Off Fundraising For Naming Of Hope Lodge Suite

As storms were cooking up down in Stephenville on Tuesday, May 10, the Cattle Baronesses were gathering at Bistro 31 to kick off their newest project — to raise $100,000 for Cattle Baron’s Ball’s naming of a Hope Lodge Suite.

Cara French and Andrea Weber

Cara French and Andrea Weber

Co-Chairs Cara French and Andrea Weber reported that if 200 present and/or past committee members would contribute at least $500, they’d meet their goal.

FYI: Hope Lodge is the American Cancer Society facility being built at the Baylor University Medical Center campus that will provide residence for those seeking treatment for cancer in the North Texas area and their families. It is a godsend for people who should not have to worry about where they can stay while trying to save their lives.

Amy Turner and Katherine Wynne

Amy Turner and Katherine Wynne

But all the talk on this evening was not limited to the need for Hope Lodge. Andrea surprised some of the guests with news that she was not just pregnant. Nope. She’s due to deliver a son just days before the Saturday, October 15, fundraiser at Gilley’s.

In the meantime, Cara was recalling the night before when she and more than a dozen gals attended the Beyonce concert at AT&T Stadium. Review: It was spectacular. One wished Queen B had done some of her old tunes.

2005 CBB Chair Amy Turner in shorts with Chanel purse chatted with 2009 CBB Chair Katherine Wynne, who was on her way to the Zoo To Do kick-off party at the Dallas Zoo.

Celebrating Women Luncheon Had Surprise Announcements And Joan Lunden Sounding The Alarm About TNBC

Of the 1200 gathered in the Anatole’s Chantilly Ballroom for the Celebrating Women Luncheon, the overwhelming majority was female. Well, duh! The event benefited Baylor Health Care System Foundation’s efforts to “to increase awareness and generate funding for breast cancer research, diagnosis and treatment.”

Robin Robinson, Nancy Carter, Joan Lunden, Beth Layton, Vicky Lattner, Joel Allison

Robin Robinson, Nancy Carter, Joan Lunden, Beth Layton, Vicky Lattner, Joel Allison

But before the ballroom filled, a private meet-and-greet with keynote speaker Joan Lunden took place high atop the Anatole in Ser with downtown Dallas serving as a glorious backdrop. Unlike years past when the pre-luncheon took place in the Wedgwood Room, this one had levels and tables for guests like Margo Goodwin, Di Johnston, Emilynn Wilson, Tucean Webb, Caren Kline, Barbara Stuart, Lindalyn Adams, Robyn Conlon, Pam Perella, Lyda Hill, Connie Yates and Isabell Novakov to wait in line for their photo opp with Joan and/or just have a cup of coffee and Danish.

Margo Goodwin, Caren Kline, Barbara Stuart, Robyn Conlon and Pam Perella

Margo Goodwin, Caren Kline, Barbara Stuart, Robyn Conlon and Pam Perella

Celebrating Women dance performance

Celebrating Women dance performance

All too soon, the group moved to the Chantilly Ballroom for the fundraising lunch. Following  a dance performance, Luncheon Chair Nancy Carter with her underwriting Co-Chairs Beth Layton and Vicky Lattner by her side told why she had taken on the responsibility of putting the event together. It was her two friends/breast cancer survivors Sue Porter and Debbie Snell, who co-chaired the luncheon years ago. Upon learning their stories and involvement and treatment at Baylor, Nancy decided that she had to raise funds and awareness.

Heather Washburne, Al Hill Jr and Elisa Summers

Heather Washburne, Al Hill Jr and Elisa Summers

Jim and Mary Lentz, Jim Joyner and Alan Miller

Jim and Mary Lentz, Jim Joyner and Alan Miller

Kenny and Lisa Troutt

Kenny and Lisa Troutt

Despite the perception of breast cancer as a “woman’s disease,” there was a strong and influential contingent of men at the tables, including Toyota’s Jim Lentz with his wife Mary Lentz, Hill family patriarch Al Hill Jr. with daughter Elisa Summers and Heather Washburne, Honorary Co-Chair Kenny Troutt with wife/Honorary Co-Chair Lisa Troutt and NM VP Kevin Hurst, who heard former “Good Morning America’s” Joan Lunden describe the past year of battling breast cancer and not just any old breast cancer. It was the Isis of breast cancers — triple-negative breast cancer (aka TNBC). Not only is it an extremely aggressive cancer, but it is not easily detectable due to breast density and not responsive to the traditional treatments.

Time and time again following the luncheon, even the most savvy women ‘fessed up they had no idea that breast density posed a problem for diagnosing this killer cancer.

Evidently, Joan’s talk was more than heard. It made a profound impact on both the women and the men. That night at a gathering of influencers, Kevin was heard describing the evils of the disease to a woman who hadn’t attended the lunch.

Robin Robinson

Robin Robinson

Another highlight of the luncheon was the announcement of $1.25M by the Andy Horner family and the men and women of Premier Designs to support Hope Lodge on Baylor’s campus. As Baylor Health Care System Foundation President Robin Robinson revealed that gift that arrived the day before, he pointed to a table of women just to the left of the stage. Were they the benefactors? No, they were Premier Designs employees who had conquered breast cancer, and they admitted they were proud and surprised about the announcement.

Robin also remembered a dear friend of the Baylor Foundation  — AT&T’s Cathy Coughlin, who spearheaded the campaign against texting while driving. She also served as the most successful Celebrating Women corporate underwriting chair in 2011. The 57-year-old marketing executive died of pancreatic cancer this past April. In her honor, AT&T made a donation to Celebrating Women.

Joan Lunden

Joan Lunden

BTW, Joan was a knockout. The daughter of a cancer surgeon who died in an airplane crash when Joan was just a youngster, she had picked up the banner and is carrying on inspired by her father and her own journey.

Need proof? Get her book.

Funny aside: When her co-author had her mammogram, she asked the clinician about her breast density. The exasperated staffer said, “Ever since Joan Lunden wrote about breast density, every woman wants to know her breast density.”

Robin Robinson, Debbie Oates, Elizabeth Selkirk, Bruce Selkirk, Ben Selkirk, Christie Carter and Susan McSherry (File photo)

Robin Robinson, Debbie Oates, Elizabeth Selkirk, Bruce Selkirk, Ben Selkirk, Christie Carter and Susan McSherry (File photo)

BTW, it was just two years ago that Bruce Selkirk established the Amy T. Selkirk Fund at Baylor in the name of his late wife Amy Selkirk, who was diagnosed with TNBC. The fund was to support a breast cancer vaccine trail led by Dr. Joyce O’Shaughnessy, the Celebrating Women Endowed Chair in Breast Cancer Research at Baylor, and Dr. Karolina Palucka, a researcher at Baylor Institute for Immunology Research.” It’s already paying off for Baylor clinical trial patients like Mary Morton and Deanna Bernhagen, who are participating in the current trial. Amy may have been a victim of TNBC, but thanks to her husband the crusade is being carried on inspired by her.

Cattle Baronesses Are Schlepping, Stuffing And Setting Up For Saturday’s Fundraiser To Take Cancer Down

The Big Tent

The Big Tent

Just back from checking out the preparations for Saturday night’s Cattle Baron’s Ball at Gilley’s. With not a cloud in the sky and beyond-perfection temperatures, the Baronesses were sans makeup with hair in ponytails as they schlepped carts, stuffed bags and set up for the goodies for the silent auction.

Ferris Wheel

Ferris Wheel

And, yes, the Ferris Wheel is right where it should be with a spectacular view of downtown Dallas, Reunion Tower and the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge.

Co-Chair Tia Wynne had sent husband Shel out of town early in the week and had a helper keep an eye on the Wynne munchkins. But Bedford will be back in time for the American Cancer Society fundraiser. The Wynne family has been providing leadership at CBB since the first one back in 1974. The reason? They have a grudge against the disease that has hit their family too often over the years.

Tia Wynne

Tia Wynne

Mary Martha Pickens

Mary Martha Pickens

Co-Chair Mary Martha Pickens regretted that her folks wouldn’t be able to attend the ball due to the lengthy trip. She recalled her childhood when every other week they would drive their 12-year-old daughter hundreds of miles for two days of chemo treatments and testing. At night they would stay in a motel, where they would single-handedly tend to the ailing child. That is why the live auction item of a naming opportunity for Hope Lodge is so important for her.

Thanks to this remarkable facility that will be built on Baylor Health Care System Dallas‘ campus, cancer patients and their caregivers can have a free place to stay when undergoing treatments. They will be able to have privacy and/or connect with others going through similar treatments. To ease their stay, there will be a communal kitchen and living area on the first floor, guest suites on the upper three floors, a 24-hour staff, on-site parking and a healing garden for guests.

And that is what all the schlepping, stuffing and setting up is about — battling cancer and supporting those on the frontline.

BTW, here are some of the ladies hard at work.

Kim Quinn and Cara French

Kim Quinn and Cara French

Andrea Weber and Kristi Bare

Andrea Weber and Kristi Bare

Ashley Allen, Nicole Hunt and Amy Green

Ashley Allen, Nicole Hunt and Amy Green

Katy Bock

Katy Bock

Natalie Siegel and Bina Patel

Natalie Siegel and Bina Patel

Callan Harrison and Lauren Chapman

Callan Harrison and Lauren Chapman

Melissa Sherrill

Melissa Sherrill

Wendy Messmann, Diana Hunt and Nikki Webb

Wendy Messmann, Diana Hunt and Nikki Webb