“Through the Diabetes Research Center, we can change the world. The scope of this project may be greater than anything we’ve ever done."
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West Hollywood, CA (PRWEB) April 3, 2011
On Friday, April 1, Eagles from across North America gathered in Iowa City to host a Rally Against Diabetes and to mark the official naming of The Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center at the University of Iowa campus. The state-of-the-art center will host leaders in the field of diabetes research in an effort to find a cure for a disease that has risen to a worldwide epidemic. The F.O.E. has pledged to donate $25 million over a five-year period to help with these research efforts.
The Eagles, over 860,000 members strong, have worked for more than 113 years to make communities stronger and lives better. The $25 million commitment to diabetes research is just the latest in a long list of charitable efforts for this group, which prides itself in being an organization of “People Helping People.” This commitment marks one of the largest partnerships ever formed in the USA that is exclusively between a fraternal organization and a major university and its academic medical center.
“To achieve this milestone and see the hard work and dedication of our membership recognized in such a way will be a remarkable experience,” F.O.E. Grand Worthy President Mike Lagervall, Sr. said. “Eagles everywhere deserve a huge thanks for getting us here. While our journey is not complete, the opportunity to see our dream slowly turn to reality is one I’m honored to be a part of and it is my hope that a large portion of our membership will be there to share the experience.”
Entertainer Tony Orlando and actor/comedian Tom Parks joined the activities April 1. Orlando, best known for his #1 hits “Knock Three Times” and “Tie A Yellow Ribbon ‘Round the Ole Oak Tree,” is a member of the F.O.E. and an entertainment legend. Parks, an insulin-dependent diabetic, has been leaving crowds in stitches for over 30 years, performing on “The Tonight Show” and “Late Night with David Letterman” and in his own comedy specials on HBO and Showtime. He has raised over $500,000 for diabetes through his foundation, “Comedy Crusade Against Diabetes.”
Also on hand was Challenger, a famed male Bald Eagle, who has flown in many public venues, including the Super Bowl. He is associated with the American Eagle Foundation, which works to develop and conduct eagle environmental recovery programs. Challenger is a free-flying educational ambassador for his recovering species in the wild and was accompanied by American Eagle Foundation President and handler Al Cerere.
University of Iowa President Sally Mason, Vice President for Medical Affairs Jean E. Robillard, and UI Foundation President and CEO Lynette L. Marshall were at the event to represent The University of Iowa. They were joined by many leaders and members of the international F.O.E.
The official naming event marked a three-year journey that began in Louisville, KY, in 2008 at the Eagles’ annual International Convention. It was there that Eagles delegates unanimously agreed to pledge $25 million over five years to fund diabetes research. Since then, more than $10 million has been raised through tireless work of F.O.E. members across the United States and Canada, culminating in the official naming event. Though the center will now forever bear the name of The Fraternal Order of Eagles, work toward raising the remaining $15 million continues.
The Diabetes Research Center, which will be housed in the John and Mary Pappajohn Biomedical Discovery Building due to be completed in 2013, is the largest project in the 113-year history of the Eagles.
“With the founding of Mother’s Day, Social Security and the Jobs After 40 program, we were able to impact the lives of the American public in a tremendous way,” Grand Madam President Mary Myers said. “Through the DRC, we can change the world. The scope of this project may be greater than anything we’ve ever done."
About the Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center:
The Fraternal Order of Eagles Diabetes Research Center will be housed at the John and Mary Pappajohn Biomedical Discovery Building on the campus of The University of Iowa in Iowa City. The state-of-the-art center will host leaders in the field of diabetes research in an effort to find a cure for the disease. The F.O.E. has pledged to donate $25 million over a five-year period to help with research efforts.
About the Fraternal Order of Eagles:
The Fraternal Order of Eagles, an international non-profit organization, unites fraternally in the spirit of liberty, truth, justice, and equality, to make human life more desirable by lessening its ills, and by promoting peace, prosperity, gladness and hope. Founded in 1898, the Eagles fund research in areas such as diabetes, heart disease, kidney disease and cancer, and raise money for neglected and abused children and the aged, as well as work for social and civic change.
Fraternal Order of Eagles: http://www.foe.com/
John and Mary Pappajohn Biomedical Discovery Building: http://discovery.medicine.uiowa.edu/about/pappajohn/index.htm
Challenger the Eagle: http://www.eagles.org/aefsplash/
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