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The V Foundation Teams Up with Sylvester, Miami Dolphins and ESPN to Support Cancer Research

The V Foundation for Cancer Research, a top-rated cancer research charity founded by ESPN and Jim Valvano, has announced a collaboration with Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, the Miami Dolphins, and ESPN to support important cancer research.

Oncologist Matteo Trucco, M.D., third from left, with Sylvester patients and family members, and representatives from V Foundation, Miami Dolphins and ESPN.

“Much of our support at the V Foundation is for athletes, teams, leagues and fans,” said Susan Braun, CEO of the V Foundation. “This program with the Dolphins and the NFL helps the V Foundation expand our reach, funding life-saving research. Each day, we follow Jim Valvano’s legendary words, ‘don’t give up . . . don’t ever give up!’” Valvano was a renowned North Carolina State basketball coach and ESPN commentator.

The Dolphins are proud to host the Dolphins Cancer Challenge (DCC), with a mission to improve people’s lives through financial support for innovative cancer research at Sylvester, South Florida’s only academic-based cancer center. Since its inception, the DCC has raised more than $22.5 million, donating 100 percent of participant-raised funds to research. The DCC continues to solidify its position as the largest event fundraiser in the NFL.

Through the new partnership, the DCC will contribute $100,000 to the V Foundation during the month of December. The funds will be matched by the V Foundation for an Early Career Investigator grant to be awarded at Sylvester. The partnership will bring V Foundation resources to the South Florida area to fund an emerging researcher.

“We’re proud of the work we have done in the South Florida community to raise critical funds for cancer research,” Dolphins Cancer Challenge Executive Director Jennifer Jehn said. “The DCC is committed to funding researchers and specialists to discover, develop and deliver more targeted therapies leading to the best patient outcomes. This grant will fund an early career researcher at Sylvester who is committed just as we are at the Dolphins to tackling cancer.”

To highlight the collaboration, ESPN’s Monday Night Countdown on December 11 featured video from a recent Dolphins practice, where a cancer patient, a survivor and Dr. Matteo Trucco of Sylvester met with Dolphins players and ESPN commentators Sean McDonough and Lisa Salters.

“Sylvester and the Miami Dolphins have had a deepening partnership for years, to raise much-needed cancer research dollars that directly benefit our community,” said Stephen D. Nimer, M.D., director of Sylvester. “We are extremely grateful for the involvement of the V Foundation, and its support in helping recognize and enhance the work of one of our most promising young investigators. This support advances our field in ways that help us serve our patients.”

The Dolphins initiative will fund a V Foundation Early Career Investigator grant to support a young tenure-track researcher early in her or his career by funding projects that are either laboratory-based fundamental research or translational research.

During December, the V Foundation’s blog, In Their Own Words, will feature content related to Sylvester’s investigator grant and the collaboration between the V Foundation, the Miami Dolphins and ESPN.

“Pairing up the V Foundation with the Dolphins and Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center in the fight against cancer was a natural choice,” said Kevin Martinez, ESPN’s Vice President of Corporate Citizenship. “Our viewers will be excited to see the V Foundation is making an impact in local NFL communities.”

The Dolphins join the Kansas City Chiefs as the second NFL team to help advance the V Foundation’s goal of achieving victory over cancer.

Tags: dolphins cancer challenge, ESPN, Jim Valvano, Miami Dolphins, Miller School of Medicine, Stephen Nimer, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Miami, V Foundation