Inspiration > Parkinson's CHAMPs
September 2011- Team Cantore
TEAM CANTORE AND COUNTRIFIED ROCK FOR RESEARCH 10/13/11
When I was diagnosed with Young Onset Parkinson’s Disease on the eve of my 40th Birthday, I was told that a cure for Parkinson’s disease (PD) was realistically only 5 to 10 years away. After two years of basically ignoring my condition (which was conveniently masked by state of the art “dopamine agonist” medication) I formed TEAM CANTORE to try and make a difference in the war against this non-discriminating, debilitating and, as of yet, incurable disease.
In 2000, as a single mother of two young children (both of whom have a genetic learning disorder called “Fragile X Syndrome”), I joined a small group of industry colleagues, family and friends in NYC to participate in the PARKINSON’S UNITY WALK (PUW). That year, 15 TEAM CANTORE participants brought in just under $10,000 for research. The Unity Walk is the largest unified grassroots fundraising event garnering the support of all major Parkinson’s organizations. This event also provides a wealth of information about various aspects of this condition and is uplifting and inspiring for all who attend. TEAM CANTORE’s roster fluctuates from year to year, playing host to some 153 walkers from 18 different states.
On the 6th anniversary of my diagnosis, researchers were still saying a cure was possible within the next 5-10 years if adequate funding was made available. By this time, I had gone on Long-Term Disability after 21 years working as an executive at The Weather Channel. Determined to find new fundraising opportunities, when I was given the rare opportunity to meet a famous Nashville songwriter through some mutual friends the idea for a country music fundraiser was born. Jeffrey Steele had recently released a new song he had written called “Help Somebody” which is exactly what he did for us at the first:
“COUNTRIFIED ROCK FOR RESEARCH – A Parkinson’s Research Fundraiser “
Featuring Producer, Performer, Songwriter and “Nashville Star” Judge, JEFFREY STEELE
Seven years later, planning is well underway for the 8th annual event coming up on Thursday, October 13, 2011.
Sponsors for TEAM CANTORE’S event, over the years, have included companies such as Abbott Pharmaceuticals, Great American Country, Kroger, Cox Communications, Comcast Spotlight, Coca-Cola Enterprises, Glaxo Smith Kline, The Weather Channel and more. This concert event has become the cornerstone of TEAM CANTORE’S fundraising efforts, yet we still attend the Unity Walk each year.
I have continued to rally the support of my extensive network of family, friends and former colleagues to contribute everything from in-kind advertising to live coverage of the Walk on TWC. TEAM CANTORE remains committed to ensuring that 100% of the expenses for hosting an event are paid for by the sponsors/grants so that 100% of the donations received go directly toward funding PD research. As a result of our efforts over the years, TEAM CANTORE has raised:
OVER $500,000 - 100% of which has gone directly toward funding Parkinson’s research.
P.O. Box 72073
Marietta, GA 30007
For more information www.teamcantore.org