Parkinson's CHAMP

Team: Strikeclubs
Location: New York City
Walking since: 2017
Money raised: $154,458

Why We Walk:
Co-Team Captain Donna Leipzig walks because she has Parkinson’s disease, and many of her friends also have Parkinson’s. In her words, she walks to “beat this thing.” Co-Team Captain Carol Meyer also walks because she has Parkinson’s disease. Carol and Donna are trying to raise as much money as possible to fund research to find a cure.

The two power-house fundraisers met five years ago through Strikeclubs, a boxing program for people with Parkinson’s that is based in New York City and run by Donna’s brother, Gary Brill. Gary volunteered at the Unity Walk six years ago and Donna and her husband David attended for the first time. The experience inspired Donna to form the Strikeclubs team.

Fun Facts About Us:
Donna previously worked with Donna Karan for 25 years and she is a former runner. Donna’s father also had Parkinson’s.

Carol is the first person in her family to have Parkinson’s. She loves to exercise. Both Team Captains live very active lifestyles and believe that a body in motion stays in motion.

Both Carol and Donna are New Yorkers. They hold a thank you party at Carol’s apartment after the Unity Walk each year.

Keys to Success:
Carol and Donna attribute their fundraising success to tremendous support from friends and family. They start their fundraising efforts early, and this year both their Facebook fundraisers and Instagram did very well. They follow up on donation requests and personally thank each and every donor, no matter the donation amount.

What We Love About the Unity Walk:
Carol and Donna love the camaraderie of the Unity Walk and having a day to share with the community. They have a lot of fun at the Unity Walk, especially enjoying the Bandshell activities.

Team Leaders:
Phyllis Frank, whose husband died of Parkinson’s; Strikeclubs walks in memory of Mel Frank.

Interview with Donna Leipzig, 7.21.21

 

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