MDA Matters September-October 2005

by Quest Staff on September 1, 2005 - 3:54pm

QUEST Vol. 12, No. 5

West named MDA chairman

Lois R. West of Hilton Head, S.C., was elected chairman of MDA's Board of Directors at the Association's annual meeting in July. She succeeds Robert M. Bennett of Los Angeles, the Board's chairman for 10 years.

West was president of MDA from 1991 to 1995 and has been a Board member for some 30 years.

Others re-elected to the Board include: Robert Ross, whom the Board renamed as MDA president & CEO; Bennett, named chairperson of the Executive Committee; Victor Wright, re-elected treasurer; and Timmi Masters, re-elected secretary.

Lois West
Lois R. West

In addition, the Board named Jerry Lewis to another term as national chairman, and Gerald C. Weinberg as senior vice president. The Board also appointed 10 new MDA vice presidents. They are:

Paul Avery of Tampa, Fla., president and chief operating officer of Outback Steakhouse; William Raymond Bosley of Baltimore, Supreme Tall Cedar of the Tall Cedars of Lebanon; Lauria Brennan, leasing director of Equity OfficeProperties Trust in Boston; William Greehey of San Antonio, chairman and chief operating officer of Valero Energy; Darryl Johnston of Dallas, an NFL color analyst for FOX Television Sports; James A. McCaslin, president and chief operating officer of Harley-Davidson Motor Company of Milwaukee; Larree Renda, executive vice president of Safeway, from Pleasanton, Calif.; Felix M. Rodriguez of Houston, president and CEO of CITGO Petroleum; Jeffrey Schenck, vice president of National Franchise for 7-Eleven, from Detroit; and Bhavdeep Singh of New York, president of the Food Emporium.

Lewis to receive Emmy award

MDA National Chairman Jerry Lewis has been named the 2005 recipient of the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Governor's Award for his accomplishments with the MDA Telethon. The award will be presented to Lewis during a prime hour of the Telethon Sept. 4-5 and again at the Primetime Creative Arts Emmy Awards on Sunday, Sept. 11.

Jerry Lewis
Jerry Lewis

The Television Academy, which awards the Emmys, will honor Lewis for his efforts to raise awareness and funds for MDA for more than 50 years.

Previous recipients of the Governor's Award include Walter Cronkite, Johnny Carson, Lucille Ball, Bob Hope, and CNN, as well as ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC for the 9/11 special "Supporting America: A Tribute to Heroes."

In announcing the award, Academy Chairman Dick Askin said, "Jerry's dedication and humanitarian efforts combined with the magnitude and longevity of the public service work he has performed exemplifies everything the Governor's Award represents."

Lewis releases memoir of life with Dean

MDA National Chairman Jerry Lewis has written a new memoir, Dean & Me: A Love Story, in which he recounts his 50-year relationship with Dean Martin, from their first meeting in 1945 until their final encounter in the 1990s.

Doubleday will release the book, co-authored by James Kaplan, on Oct. 25.

In the book, Lewis discusses the success of the comedy duo on stage, television and film, and delves into the story behind their breakup after 10 years of working together. Lewis conveys the love he still feels for his late partner and the relationship that continued until Martin's death in 1995.

Vonage offers MDA donations

Vonage, a leader in the broadband phone industry, is making a special offer to new customers that will benefit MDA.

For every new customer who signs up through Sept. 30 [2005], the company will donate $30 to MDA. Vonage offers a Voice over Internet Protocol, hooking phone service to a high-speed Internet connection.

In ALS news...

MDA's ALS Division has designated the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester as the site of its 34th MDA/ALS center. The director of the new center is David Chad, professor of neurology and director of MDAs clinic at the university.

MDA's fifth annual Wings Over Wall Street gala will be held Sept. 22 at the New York Marriott Marquis. Since its inception, the event has raised more than $4 million for MDA's ALS research program. Special award recipients will include neurologist Robert H. Brown Jr., director of the MDA/ALS Center at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston.

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