Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Donate Life Rose Parade® Float Honors 14 Donation and Transplantation Leaders on 'Stars of Life' Walk of Fame


Be sure to mark your calendar to view the 120th Rose Parade Thursday, January 1, 2009, at 8 a.m. PST and watch for the Donate Life float

Following the Rose Parade, at 2 p.m. (PST), the 95th Rose Bowl Game® will feature an exciting match-up between Penn State and USC, once again showcasing the best of collegiate football.


On New Year’s Day, 14 men and women who have made exceptional contributions to organ, eye and tissue donation and transplantation will be honored with Walk of Fame stars on the 2009 Donate Life Rose Parade float, Stars of Life.

Inspired by the 2009 Rose Parade theme Hats Off To Entertainment and modeled after the Hollywood Walk of Fame, this cluster of stars honors luminaries in the field of donation and transplantation who have made a positive, lasting impact on organ, eye and tissue donation and transplantation through their contributions to medicine, the community, and public policy. From a pool of more than 60 nominations received through a national call for submissions, all 14 honorees were chosen by the float’s organizing committee, which includes participants from the full spectrum of donation, transplantation and affiliated healthcare organizations.

“We had a special opportunity this year to honor those who have worked diligently, year after year, to save lives through donation and transplantation,” said Tom Mone, member of the Donate Life float committee and chief executive officer and executive vice president at OneLegacy, the nonprofit organ and tissue recovery agency serving the greater Los Angeles area. “Some of our honorees are household names in their respective professions, others have pioneered organizations, campaigns and initiatives, and some have inspired people and communities worldwide to say ‘yes’ to donation. To all of these ‘Stars of Life,’ we simply say: thank you.”

The ‘Stars of Life’ Walk of Fame honorees include (in alphabetical order):

  • Clive O. Callender, MD, FACS (Silver Spring, Md.), the senior African American transplant surgeon, founder of the National Minority Organ/Tissue Transplant Education Program (MOTTEP®), and expert on the relationship between minorities and organ and tissue donation and transplantation.

  • Gary Foxen (Orange, Calif.), lung recipient and visionary whose idea for a Rose Parade float to reach a mass audience about donation resulted in the largest public relations campaign in the nation for organ, eye and tissue donation.

  • Reg Green (La Canada, Calif.), founder of The Nicholas Green Foundation, author and global ambassador for donation who, with his wife, Maggie, is internationally recognized as the “first family of donation” after the death of their young son, Nicholas, in Italy in 1994.

  • Richard J. Kagan, MD, FACS (Cincinnati, Ohio), world-renowned burn care surgeon and prominent proponent of using human allogeneic skin grafts as the gold standard for burn care.

  • Bill Lofthouse (1939-2008), donor husband and founder of Phoenix Decorating Co., one of the top producers of Rose Parade floats, whose generous support helped the Donate Life float evolve into a national tradition.

  • Robert and Rafael Mendez, MD, FACS (Los Angeles, Calif.), kidney transplant surgeons and founders of OneLegacy, the nation’s largest organ and tissue recovery agency, and the National Institute of Transplantation.

  • Kenneth Moritsugu, MD, PhD (Washington, D.C.), donor father and husband, former Acting Surgeon General of the U.S., and one of the nation’s most respected ambassadors of donation and transplantation.

  • Joseph E. Murray, MD (Wellesley Hills, Mass.), recipient of the 1990 Nobel Prize in Medicine who conducted the world’s first kidney transplant, allograft transplant, and transplant of a kidney from a deceased donor.

  • Barbara Schulman, RN, CPTC (Los Angeles, Calif.), co-founder and first president of the North American Transplant Coordinators Organization (NATCO).

  • Thomas E. Starzl, MD, PhD (Le Mars, Iowa), groundbreaking surgeon who performed the world’s first successful liver transplant in 1967 and won the 2004 National Medal of Science for his innovation in transplantation medicine.

  • Bryan Stewart (Northridge, Calif.), vice president of communications at OneLegacy, and chairman of the organizing committee for the Donate Life Rose Parade float, centerpiece of the nation's largest public relations campaign to inspire people to donate life.

  • Tommy G. Thompson (Madison, Wis.), former Governor of Wisconsin and former Secretary of the U.S. Dept. of Health and Human Services whose initiatives include the first-ever state law mandating organ donation education in the classroom, and the Organ Donation and Transplantation Breakthrough Collaborative, a drive to increase organ donation rates nationwide through the sharing of best practices among hospitals.

  • Jesse White (Chicago, Ill.), Illinois Secretary of State whose advocacy of donation and the Illinois Organ/Tissue Donor Registry, the nation's first confidential computerized database allowing individuals to document their donor designations, is a model for the nation.

  • James S. Wolf, MD (1935-2007), pioneer transplant surgeon whose vision of the value and need for public education and collaboration among organ, eye and tissue recovery organizations led to the founding of the Coalition on Donation (now Donate Life America).


More than 28,000 lives are saved each year in the U.S. through the gift of organ donation, giving hope to the more than 100,000 people awaiting a life-saving organ transplant. In addition, every year hundreds of thousands of people need donated corneas and tissue to prevent or cure blindness, heal burns or save limbs.

This special group of organ, eye, and tissue donors will be honored visually in ‘floragraph’ images adorning the sixth Donate Life float entry, Stars of Life, in the 120th Rose Parade. Amidst the float’s spectacular shower of stars, 38 gold stars will frame these artistic portraits created with floral and other natural materials. Families of many of the donors depicted in the floragraphs will journey cross-country to Pasadena in the weeks leading up to the Parade to decorate the portraits of their loved ones.

In addition to the Walk of Fame honorees, the float will feature 26 riders, among them transplant recipients, donor family members and a living donor, immersed in a shower of more than 100 stars. Among them are 38 gold stars with floragraph portraits of organ, eye and tissue donors, dozens of white stars to represent those among us who have been touched by donation, and four transparent stars to symbolize those in need of donated organs, corneas and tissue. The large orange-yellow stars at the front of the float will carry more than 1,000 roses dedicated through the float’s Family Circle program.

Coordinated by Donate Life America member OneLegacy, the Donate Life Rose Parade float is supported by 60 official partners from across the nation, including organ and tissue recovery organizations, tissue banks, state donor registries, transplant centers and affiliated organizations. Joining OneLegacy as top-level benefactors are Astellas Pharma US, Inc., a fourth-year sponsor of five float riders through the “Ride of a Lifetime” contest and supporter of 1,000 volunteer decorators; the American Association of Tissue Banks (AATB); Donate Life America; the Family Circle Rose Dedication Program; and UNOS (United Network for Organ Sharing) and National Donor Memorial. All float partners encourage parade viewers to save lives by registering in their states to be organ, eye and tissue donors and donating blood in their communities.

The 120th Rose Parade themed Hats Off To Entertainment will take place Thurs., Jan. 1, 2009, at 8 a.m. (PST) featuring majestic floral floats, high-stepping equestrian units and spirited marching bands showcasing the best in entertainment. Following the Rose Parade, at 2 p.m. (PST), the 95th Rose Bowl Game® will feature an exciting match-up between Penn State and USC, once again showcasing the best of collegiate football.

“You Have the Power to Save Lives – Sign Your Donor Card & Tell Your Loved Ones of Your Decision”

Register to be a donor in Ontario or Download Donor Cards from Trillium Gift of Life Network
For other Canadian provinces click here

In the United States, be sure to find out how to register in your state at ShareYourLife.org or Download Donor Cards from OrganDonor.Gov

Your generosity can save up to eight lives with heart, kidneys, liver, lungs, pancreas and small intestine transplants. One tissue donor can help up to 100 other people by donating skin, corneas, bone, tendon, ligaments and heart valves

1 comment:

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