Posts Tagged ‘Team Draft’

Team Draft Visits the Lurie Cancer Center

Wednesday, April 25th, 2012

From Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University’s blog.

Former NFL linebacker and Chicago Bear, Chris Draft, visited the Lurie Cancer Center to learn more about advances being made in lung cancer research and treatment.

Team Draft Visits Lurie Cancer Center

Team Draft Visits Lurie Cancer Center

Team Draft, part of the Chris Draft Family Foundation, was created by Chris and his late wife, Keasha, during her year-long struggle with lung cancer. Since Keasha’s death last December, Chris has renewed his commitment to saving lives by changing the face of lung cancer; increasing awareness and crucially needed research funding by shattering the misconception that lung cancer is a “smoker’s disease.”

Chris was not surprised to learn from thoracic oncologist, Jyoti Patel, MD, that 30% of lung cancer patients treated at the Lurie Cancer Center are non-smokers. “Keasha never smoked. The association with smoking makes patients feel guilty, and makes it harder for patients and caregivers to grieve. We were blessed by the strength and love of our family and friends,” he adds. “Keasha and I didn’t want the stigma to keep other lung cancer patients from receiving support when they need it most.”

Chris toured the Lurie Cancer Center, Keasha’s iPad in hand, with Dr. Patel, thoracic surgeon, Malcolm DeCamp, MD, radiation oncologist, Minesh Mehta, MD, and Senior Practice Manager, Karen Giammicchio, MSN, APN, AOCNS. In addition, Chris visited the Lurie Cancer Center’s inpatient units in Northwestern’s Prentice Women’s Hospital with Oncology Clinical Nurse Specialist, Barb Gobel, RN, MS, AOCN, and met with Raymond Bergan, MD, to learn about research related to chemoprevention of lung cancer.

At each stop along the way, he took off the cover to show a photo of Keasha, including her in the experience. “The purpose of Team Draft is not just to honor my wife,” he said. “It’s an extension of her passion and spirit—and of other courageous cancer patients, caregivers and healthcare providers dedicated to making a difference.”

Learn more about Chris’s outreach on behalf of Team Draft. Respond and Donate

Tackling Lung Cancer: Team Draft Visits Chicago

Monday, April 23rd, 2012

“Lung cancer came into my house, and it took my wife. Too many families are affected by this horrible disease.  It’s time to respond,” said CDFF founder, Chris Draft, of his Team Draft initiative.  “That’s why Keasha and I launched Team Draft.  She wanted to be an inspiration to those battling the disease and we wanted to raise awareness so that other families wouldn’t have to go through what we went through. Team Draft is committed to changing the face of lung cancer, but it takes a team to tackle cancer.”

Team Draft is back on the move, and visiting Chicago as part of a Midwest leg  of a nationwide public awareness campaign to change the face of lung cancer.  The visit to Chicago will include stops at three of the nations’s top cancer research and treatment facilities, Rush University Medical Center and Northwestern University’s Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center, and also the University of Chicago Comprehensive Cancer Center.

Team Draft will share amazing stories from Chicagoans who are Changing the Face of Lung Cancer, and video of phenomenal doctors and researchers at these facilities who are Tackling Lung Cancer, one breath at a time. Respond and Donate

Georgia Becomes the First State to Create Lung Cancer License Plate

Thursday, April 19th, 2012

ATLANTA (CBS ATLANTA) – Jackie Archer and former NFL player Chris Draft stood next to Gov. Nathan Deal as he signed into law a bill that calls for the creation of a Lung Cancer Awareness license plate.

“I honestly didn’t think that I would be alive to see this happen, but I am,” Archer said as she fought back tears. Archer is a lung cancer survivor. Doctors discovered it in 2005 after she was involved in a car accident.

“My accident saved my life,” said Archer. To this day doctors do not know how Archer got lung cancer because she never smoked and neither did her parents. “The whole stigma that lung cancer is a smokers disease, we are changing that stigma,” said Archer.

Draft, who also played for the Atlanta Falcons, is also helping to change that stigma. His wife lost her battled to lung cancer exactly one month after their wedding. Keasha Rutledge Draft was only 38. She was another non-smoker diagnosed with the deadly disease. Draft held a picture of Keasha while the governor signed the lung cancer license plate into law.

“This plate doesn’t just say lung cancer matters, but it really allows somebody to feel like they matter and fighting against it with family and friends who are right there with them,” said Draft. Draft was there for his wife and although she’s gone, he is still fighting to bring awareness. He said that’s why it was important for him to be there when Georgia became the first state in the country to have a lung cancer license plate. “By having the plate and increasing the awareness people will understand how important it is and do something about it,” said Draft. Respond and Donate

The University of Alabama-Birmingham is Tackling Lung Cancer

Tuesday, April 10th, 2012

Dr. Kvale is board certified in Family Practice and Hospice and Palliative Medicine. Her clinical interests include the supportive care of cancer patients, survivorship, and the care of palliative patients in intensive settings. She is the Director of the Supportive Care and Survivorship outpatient clinic at UAB. Her research interests include Health Services Research focused on cancer survivor ship, symptom assessment and management, and implementation research. Her research is currently supported by the American Cancer Society, the NIH, and the Veterans Administration. Respond and Donate

Team Draft Visits Good Day Alabama

Thursday, April 5th, 2012
Good Day Alabama - Fox 6

Good Day Alabama - Fox 6

Veteran NFL Linebacker , NFL ambassador and lung health advocate Chris Draft  is in town today as part of his nationwide tour of leading lung cancer research and treatment centers. Chris’s 38 year old wife, Keasha Rutledge Draft died of lung cancer. Through the Chris Draft Family Foundation, he is carrying on their work of raising lung cancer awareness via the “Team Draft” Initiative – an alliance with the NFL Players Association School of Legends.

Chris will meet with researchers at UAB’s Comprehensive Cancer Center  – and will be meeting with  lung cancer research and treatment faculty to get a close up look at the many promising UAB programs that are fighting the disease. Team Draft is dedicated to raising awareness, accelerating research for a cure, and leading improvements in the patient treatment experience by improving cancer treatment facilities and creating a better environment in which those battling the disease can fight. Chris is a veteran NFL linebacker; he played in the league for 13 years and maintains strong ties with the NFL teams he played for: Atlanta Falcons, Washington Redskins, San Francisco Forty Niners, Chicago Bears, Carolina Panthers, St. Louis Rams and the Buffalo Bills. Chris played college football for Stanford University, earning a degree in Economics during his college career.

Click here to watch the video at Fox 6′s Good Day Alabama page.

Dr. Robert Cerfolio is Tackling Lung Cancer

Thursday, April 5th, 2012

Dr. Robert James Cerfolio has been in the medical profession for more than 20 years. He is a board certified General Thoracic Surgeon. Dr. Cerfolio is known by his colleagues as one of the busiest and best thoracic surgeons in the world. In 1999 alone he performed more than 800 operations for disorders of the esophagus, lungs, mediastinum, and trachea. He has held this record yearly ever since. In addition to his position as Thoracic Surgeon at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, Dr. Cerfolio is also Chief and Director of Thoracic Surgery for Birmingham Veterans Administration Hospital and on the Medical Leadership Committee. Respond and Donate

Dr. Cerfolio’s clinical interests are lung cancer, esophageal surgery, tracheal surgery, repair of bronchopleural fistula, Video Assisted Thoroscopy (VAT), chest wall resection and reconstruction, and meidastinal masses. Dr. Cerfolio is a collaborator in research to develop gene therapies for esophageal cancer

From CBS42: Team Draft Co-Founder Chris Draft tours UAB Cancer Center

Thursday, April 5th, 2012

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WIAT) – On April 5th, 2012 former NFL linebacker Chris Draft toured UAB’s Comprehensive Cancer Center, which is currently under construction.

Seeing one of the nation’s leading cancer research and treatment centers in transition is just what someone like Draft would want to see.

Chris and his wife Lakeasha Rutledge Draft created “Team Draft” less than one year ago, during Keasha’s battle with lung cancer. The organization was started in hopes that her fight to live would give hope atnd comfort others around the world. They came up with the idea during their wedding, in which she was in a wheelchair and had to use oxygen.

Keasha passed away on December 27th, 2011, just one month after the couple married. She was 38 and a non-smoker.

With an ipad in hand, Chris Draft walked the halls of the UAB Comprehensive Cancer Center with its director Edward Partridge, removing the pink cover from the ipad each time the group stopped to take a photo reveiling a picture of his vibrant wife.

With his wife still by his side, Draft continues to fight. He has been touring cancer centers around the world to help encourage patients, doctors and researchers to continue the fight.

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Team Draft honored at the 33rd Annual Drum Major for Justice Awards

Wednesday, April 4th, 2012

April 4, 2012 (Atlanta, GA) – Former NFL Linebacker Chris Draft and Founder of the Chris Draft Family Foundation will be honored tonight at the 33rd Annual Drum Major for Justice Awards Dinner in downtown Atlanta on in recognition of the Foundation’s health awareness efforts.

The awards ceremony, the signature event of the SCLC/W.O.M.E.N. Inc., is held annually on the anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s assassination to mark the passing of one of the world’s great leaders, and to inspire others to carry on Dr. King’s spirit and legacy through service and leadership.  The awards ceremony recognizes individuals and organizations who are accomplished barrier-breaking servant leaders – present day “Drum Majors” – who embody and perpetuate Dr. King’s legacy and spirit.  This year’s honorees include Samuel L. Jackson, Sean Penn, and Al Sharpton.

Paul S. Falkowski discusses Integrated Health at MUSC Hollings Cancer Center

Friday, March 30th, 2012

Paul S. Falkowski is enthusiastically involved with the Integrated Health program at Medical University of South Carolina’s (MUSC) Hollings Cancer Center in Charleston, SC.  He stresses that this program addresses the “look and feel good” part of going through cancer treatment.  External image, how we feel about ourselves, is an extremely important part of our self-esteem.  Many times cancer patients lose sight of this while they undergo treatment.  MUSC Hollings Cancer Center is there to address these intrinsic needs.   Falkowski states that simple things like prosthetics, wigs, and massage therapy can make a world of difference to patients.  Feeling good about yourself and adopting a healthy lifestyle is part of a multidisciplinary approach to change the face of cancer.

Team Draft was founded by Chris Draft, former NFL player, and his wife, Keasha, whose life was sadly cut short by lung cancer in December 2011.  Their goal was to inspire patients to hope and to provide them with information on the multitude of programs available to help them in their fight.  The foundation is dedicated to raising lung cancer awareness and securing funds desperately needed for research. Programs like the one at MUSC give patients hope and are a vital part of cancer treatment. Team Draft’s visit to MUSC was part of an extensive National Campaign public awareness campaign to visit cancer research and treatment facilities working diligently to prevent and treat lung cancer. Respond and Donate

Tackling Lung Cancer: Team Draft’s East Coast Tour

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

Team Draft and the National Lung Cancer Partnership are joining forces to bring much needed attention and critical resources to lung cancer.

“Lung cancer came into my house, and it took my wife. Too many families are affected by this horrible disease.  It’s time to respond,” said CDFF founder, Chris Draft, of his Team Draft initiative.  “That’s why Keasha and I launched Team Draft.  She wanted to be an inspiration to those battling the disease and we wanted to raise awareness so that other families wouldn’t have to go through what we went through. Team Draft is committed to changing the face of lung cancer, but it takes a team to tackle cancer, and we are proud to partner with the National Lung Cancer Partnership.”

Along with the Partnership, Team Draft is launching the East Coast leg of a nationwide public awareness campaign to change the face of lung cancer.  The two-week tour will include stops at some of the top cancer research and treatment facilities in the country, including several members of the Lung Cancer Mutation Consortium (the LCMC).

The Team Draft East Coast Tour will visit several cities to share the vision of Team Draft, including:

Charlotte, NC
Chapel Hill, NC
Washington, D.C.
Baltimore, MD
Philadelphia, PA
Mt. Laurel, NJ
New York, NY
Boston, MA
Washington. D.C.
Charleston, SC