Why I Walk: Supporting the LLS Light the Night Walk
By Ed Hutner, Senior Vice President of Human Resources, Deltek
My family knows all too well the pain caused by a loved one’s early death from blood cancer.
At the age of 46, my father-in-law passed away of lymphoma. Although he passed away almost 30 years ago and I never had the opportunity to meet him, his absence has loomed large in my family. Blood cancer meant that he never walked his daughter, my wife, down the aisle when she got married. He never got to enjoy retirement, or play ball with his grandchildren, or celebrate his 50th wedding anniversary. Blood cancer robbed him of the moments that many of us look forward to experiencing in life.
These milestones missed, these moments that never happened, are a source of sadness and regret for all of us even now. And they are why I am proud to help lead #TeamDeltek as we participate in the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s National Capital Region Light the Night Walk this fall in the U.S. and Canada.
At Deltek, we proudly support a variety of philanthropic organizations that foster health and well-being around the world. Through support of these organizations, Deltek employees live our values and connect to the broader communities in which we live and work.
Our support of LLS and the Light the Night Walk is particularly meaningful because, like my family, so many of us have been personally affected by blood cancers. We understand that the fight against cancer is constant—and that work by the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society has led to valuable research, education and treatments that enhance the lives of patients and their families.
For example, in 2017 alone:
- 15 new blood cancer treatments approved by the FDA were funded by LLS.
- Four new treatments were approved for acute myeloid leukemia (AML), a disease for which the standard of care had not changed in the previous 40 years.
- There has been an average decline of 20 percent in blood cancer death rates since the 1990s.
- The five-year survival rate for children with the most commonly diagnosed pediatric cancer, acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL), has improved from three percent in 1964 to more than 90 percent today.
Yet, despite this progress, there’s so much more work to be done to create a world without blood cancers.
This is the fourth year that Deltek is supporting the Light the Night Walk, and our 2018 fundraising goal is $53,000, our largest to date. Employees across North America are ramping up their fundraising during the month of September, which is observed as National Blood Cancer Awareness Month, and you’re sure to see increased buzz around our efforts on social media. But, we can’t do it alone! I encourage you to get involved as well.
How can you help? You can support #TeamDeltek in this year’s Light the Night campaigns in North America by:
- Joining a Light the Night Walk – Anyone can participate, with no obligation to donate or fundraise. Participating in a walk is easy to do and is a great way to connect with your community, wherever you’re located. Visit Light the Night online for more information.
- Donating to #TeamDeltek – You can visit the Team Deltek Fundraising Page and make a donation in support of our fundraising efforts.
Even the smallest donation can make a difference. Just $35 to LLS provides transportation expenses for a patient living in the Washington, D.C. area to a comprehensive cancer center for treatment, while $75 covers the cost of one tissue typing test used to identify potential bone marrow donors.
Here at Deltek, we recognize that as a global company, we have a responsibility to engage in the communities where we work and help those around us. Our participation in events like Light the Night underscores our team’s commitment to truly making a difference in the lives of others. I know that our entire leadership team is proud of our employees’ efforts to support patients, families, and scientists in the fight against blood cancers.
Light the Night walks are a truly moving experience—a night of hope, remembrance, and support for all those touched by blood cancers. I encourage you to seek out an opportunity to be part of a Light the Night Walk near you.
We owe it to our children and our children’s children to eradicate blood cancers and give more families a lifetime of happy memories. Please join us to support LLS and the Light the Night campaign!
About the Author
Ed Hutner is Senior Vice President, Human Resources for Herndon-based Deltek, the leading global provider of solutions for project-based businesses. A 20+ year veteran of talent management with a solid foundation built on analytics, technology and education, Ed has a successful record of aligning HR goals with broader strategic plans. Connect with Ed Hutner on LinkedIn.
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