Washington, DC (May 9, 2012) – Leaders from government and industry were honored this evening for their leadership in encouraging public and private investments in life-saving research, education, and support services for people affected by lupus during the Lupus Foundation of America’s (LFA) National Butterfly Gala at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium.
This year’s Butterfly Gala was hosted by author and journalist Lee Woodruff and singer Josh Krajcik received a special welcome from his mom, Lisa Pim, who is living with lupus, and opened the program with a powerful rendition of “At Last.”
“We have seen historic progress in lupus in recent years that would not have been possible without innovative leaders from government and industry working to make a difference in the lives of all those affected by lupus,” said Sandra C. Raymond, President and CEO of the Lupus Foundation of America. “The Lupus Foundation of America’s Butterfly Gala is an opportunity to recognize our honorees for their significant contributions and their commitment to elevate lupus to a place of prominence on the nation’s health care agenda.”
The 2012 LFA National Butterfly Gala honorees are:
Representatives Tom Rooney (R-FL-16), William Keating (D-MA-10), Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-FL-18), and Jim Moran (D-VA-8) for their leadership to ensure Members of Congress understand the impact of lupus on individuals and their families.
Thomas Watkins, Chairman, Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) for his critical role in enabling cutting-edge research and development initiatives that have changed the odds of serious, life-threatening conditions affecting millions around the world.
Regina M. Benjamin, MD, MBA, U.S. Surgeon General for standing with the LFA and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Minority Health to pioneer medical school curricula that will improve physician training and allow for earlier diagnosis of lupus and more effective treatment.
Other special guests featured were Stephen I. Katz, M.D., Ph.D., Shannon Boxx, U.S. Women’s Soccer player and Olympic gold medalist who is living with lupus. The LFA’s National Butterfly Gala generates critical funding to help advance the LFA’s mission of improving the quality of life for the estimated 1.5 million Americans living with lupus.
The Lupus Foundation of America (LFA) is the oldest and largest national nonprofit voluntary health organization focused on improving the quality of life for people with lupus. Our unique dual mission serves the ongoing needs of people affected by lupus today while leading efforts to find a cure. For more information about the LFA’s, please visit www.lupus.org