Orlando, Fla. -- A packed room of building industry executives and special guests of cancer and diabetes care center City of Hope set the stage for the charity's Spirit of Life ceremony honoring Craig Menear, The Home Depot's executive VP merchandising.
The City of Hope's Hardware and Homebuilding industry group raised more than $1 million for the City of Hope in connection with the Spirit of Life ceremony Jan. 11.
"I know for the past few years it's been a very difficult time," said Menear. "But one thing that I'm very proud of is that this industry has always given back. And as business gets better, we are again stepping up and we are giving back."
Menear toured the City of Hope facility near Los Angeles late last year, and described the experience as an inspiration. "Being there on that campus, I know that we can make a difference and we are making a difference," Menear said.
The ceremony included an update from City of Hope research scientist Dr. Theodore Kroiatiris, who described the City of Hope as "an institution on the forefront of fighting cancer." The event also included a testimonial from cancer survivor Tammy Erebia, whose husband happens to be Rick Erebia, a regional merchandise manager for The Home Depot.
Since it was founded in 1982, City of Hope’s Hardware/Homebuilding Industry has raised more than $140 million for lifesaving research, treatment and education programs. The group has grown to encompass a nationwide network of high-profile manufacturers, retailers, distributors, manufacturers' representatives and related members.
Karen Mendelsohn, of Masco served as master of ceremonies for the Spirit of Life event. "In one way or another, cancer and diabetes impact all of us," Mendelsohn said. She pointed to statistics showing 10 million people in the United States are battling cancer, and 20 million people are fighting diabetes.