Orlando Mayor Highlights Baton Pass at City Hall and Throughout Central Florida
Join the Campaign at Facebook.Com/TheBatonPass
(Orlando, FL – June 12, 2014) -- Siemens, one of the world's leading engineers of medical imaging, laboratory diagnostics and healthcare IT solutions, with Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer launched the Central Florida leg of a campaign tour called "The Baton Pass™" that raises funds for Stand Up To Cancer® (SU2C), a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, to support its innovative cancer research, designed to get new therapies to patients quickly.
"The Baton Pass" links the strong hope for survivorship for everyone facing a cancer diagnosis with the critical need to invest in research. Siemens is donating one dollar to SU2C for every pass of the Baton -- physically and via www.facebook.com/TheBatonPass -- up to $1 million, through September 5, 2014. Over 500,000 passes have been made so far online and at over 50 events country-wide, touching the hands of community members, patients, survivors, doctors, scientists, health care workers, families and anyone who has been affected by cancer, signifying unity in the fight against this disease.
"At Siemens, we believe that innovating and expediting scientific discoveries is vital to the communities in which we live and work," said Randy Zwirn, CEO of Siemens Energy. "Of course resources are needed to make this possible, and that's why Siemens is proud to bring this grassroots campaign to the Orlando community to support Stand Up To Cancer in its mission to accelerate innovative cancer research and save lives."
Traveling from City Hall in a Baton Pass brand-wrapped bus, the Baton was passed at events across Orlando also visiting the UF Health Cancer Center - Orlando Health, Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute and Siemens Energy, all representing important aspects of central Florida's industries – healthcare and energy.
Along with Mayor Dyer and Orlando City Commissioners, Siemens Energy, Inc. CFO Steve Conner, SU2C co-founder Kathleen Lobb and Sanford-Burnham researcher Dr. Layton Smith, the Orlando Children's Choir performed and kicked off the first pass at City Hall Plaza with Siemens Energy, Fifth Third Bank, and other downtown employees. Mayor Dyer proclaimed June 12th as "The Baton Pass Day" in the City of Orlando.
"As Mayor, the health and well being of our citizens is extremely important to me and I am proud to partner with Siemens to launch the Baton Pass campaign here in Orlando to bring awareness and support to the fight against cancer," said Orlando Mayor Buddy Dyer. "As part of this initiative, I would like to encourage all of Orlando's citizens, to get involved by passing the baton virtually on facebook.com and joining us as we work together to find a cure for cancer."
"I want to thank Mayor Dyer and the entire Siemens team for making The Baton Pass such a huge success," stated SU2C Co-founder Kathleen Lobb. "When we started SU2C six years ago, we had two big communications goals: make people see what an incredibly hopeful moment this is in cancer research, and convince everyone that each and every one of us can do something to help scientists working 24/7 to develop new therapies in their labs and get them to patients … quickly.
The Baton Pass has given us a fantastically simple but enormously powerful tool to do just that. We thank everyone in Orlando who helped make today so incredible."
The Baton then traveled to UF Health Cancer Center - Orlando Health's outpatient chemotherapy floor, where oncologists and their patients currently undergoing treatment could be part of this inspirational event.
"Dollars for cancer research are a critical piece of the puzzle to treating and curing cancer," said Mark Roh, President of UF Health Cancer Center - Orlando Health. "For those of us who face the reality of cancer every day, being able to participate in this event is inspiring and empowering."
Making its way across town, the Baton visited Sanford-Burnham at Lake Nona where teams of research scientists passed the Baton through its high-tech labs. The Institute is actively engaged with SU2C and one of its senior scientists, Kristiina Vuori, M.D., Ph.D., president of Sanford-Burnham, is a member of the SU2C-MRA Melanoma Dream Team. Dream Teams bring together great scientists and clinicians from around the world to join in the fight against cancer. Dr. Vuori's team received a three-year grant of $6 million to explore a personalized-medicine approach to treating metastatic melanoma. The Institute is recognized for the National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center on its main campus in La Jolla, Calif., which is one of just seven such centers in the U.S.
"Philanthropic support of medical research drives innovation to accelerate the discovery of new cancer-fighting therapeutics. SU2C's funding encourages collaboration across disciplines, institutions, countries, and specialties, and pushes the dream of ending cancer closer to reality," said Smith, director of Drug Discovery at Sanford-Burnham at Lake Nona.
Siemens employees passed the message of hope as the Baton ended its day at the Siemens Energy campus in Orlando, the Americas headquarters for the company's Energy business.
Since the launch on March 19th on Good Morning America, the baton has traveled to more than 60 locations across the country including hospitals, schools, sporting events, trade shows, charity walks and more. Over the next several months, the Baton will continue to pass through cities nationwide and some of the North America's most prestigious medical institutions, bringing its symbolic "hope" to the doctors, nurses, researchers, patients and families who are on the front lines to save lives. The Baton includes a GPS tracking system that allows users of the Facebook app to follow the Baton's journey during the course of the campaign. Everyone can participate in the campaign by visiting Facebook.Com/TheBatonPass, where one user "Like" counts as a virtual "pass" of the baton, which equates to one dollar donated to SU2C, up to one million dollars.
"The Baton Pass™" broadcast quality footage from events across the country is available: http://inr.synapticdigital.com/siemens/standuptocancer/.
Siemens Corporation is a U.S. subsidiary of Siemens AG, a global powerhouse in electronics and electrical engineering, operating in the industry, energy, healthcare, and infrastructure & cities sectors. Siemens in the USA employs approximately 52,000 people throughout all 50 states and Puerto Rico. The Siemens Healthcare Sector is one of the world's largest suppliers to the healthcare industry and a trendsetter in medical imaging, laboratory diagnostics, healthcare information technology and hearing aids. Siemens has long believed that imaging technology plays a key role in advancing cancer research. We have seen firsthand the power of an early and accurate diagnosis. Our diagnostic technologies have made it possible to detect cancer in some of its earliest and most treatable stages, sometimes before a patient even experiences symptoms.
About Stand Up To Cancer
Stand Up To Cancer (SU2C) raises funds to accelerate the pace of research to get new therapies to patients quickly and save lives now. SU2C, a program of the Entertainment Industry Foundation (EIF), a 501(c)(3) charitable organization, was established in 2008 by film and media leaders who utilize the industry's resources to engage the public in supporting a new, collaborative model of cancer research, and to increase awareness about progress being made in the fight against the disease. As SU2C's scientific partner, the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) and a Scientific Advisory Committee led by Nobel Laureate Phillip A. Sharp, Ph.D., conduct rigorous, competitive review processes to identify the best research proposals to recommend for funding, oversee grants administration, and provide expert review of research progress.