JDRF Celebrates Highest Fundraising Dream Gala in Chapter History!

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JDRF raised nearly $900,000 at the April 13 Dream Gala during which Dr. Peter and Linda Chase were recognized for their outstanding commitment, dedication and drive to achieve JDRF’s vision of a world without T1D.

Over 500 guests heard from JDRF’s new President and CEO Dr. Aaron Kowalski, who underscored JDRF’s continued commitment to driving progress in type 1 diabetes research, especially in the areas of immunology and beta cell replacement and regeneration.

The 20th Anniversary Dream Gala was preceded by a VIP research reception where special guests that included a multitude of Colorado-based JDRF funded researchers heard from Dr. Kowalski and Representative Diana DeGette. The gala program included silent and live auctions; a multi-course dinner; and JDRF’s signature Fund A Cure during which over $450,000 was raised that will go directly to funding research.

During his remarks, Dr. Chase shared his admiration and respect for JDRF and in particular Dr. Kowalski. Dr. Chase was appointed the first Director of the University of Colorado Pediatric Diabetes Clinic in 1976. While his primary research interest has been in the prevention of T1D, with the support of a JDRF research grant he paved the path for the development of a closed-loop artificial pancreas system.  He was also a primary investigator in the JDRF National Continuous Glucose Monitoring Study Group. Dr. Chase has worked to improve adolescent adherence to diabetes care, and has served as the principal investigator on many groundbreaking projects. Having published extensive research on diabetes outcomes in T1D patients, his work has resulted in over 300 peer-reviewed publications and 76 book chapters. Dr. Chase is the author of five educational books for families with T1D that have reached over two million families over the past 38 years and are available in English, Spanish, Arabic and Chinese.

Linda Chase is a nurse with a background in community health who tirelessly supports those living with T1D and those who love them by volunteering her time at the Barbara Davis Center.

Dr. Chase’s book, “A First Book for Understanding Type 1 Diabetes,” has been a cornerstone of the JDRF Bag of Hope, a transformational resource for families newly diagnosed with T1D in the United States. Annually, more than 20,000 JDRF Bags of Hope are distributed across the country, providing patients with resources, support and community as they learn to live and thrive with T1D.

Dr. Chase noted that JDRF was a “major force in providing research funds that allowed continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) to become rapidly available for people with diabetes.” CGM’s and other technology advanced by JDRF have “paved the way for improved glucose control … for which families and care providers are greatly appreciative.”

The JDRF Dream Gala Steering Committee included Immediate Past Chair Meredith Coors; Corporate Chair Katie Leonard of Aetna; and Auction Co-Chairs Dick Cohen and Meredith Coors. Greg Dutra, meteorologist with KDVR Fox 31, served as the master of ceremonies.

The 2019 fundraising total was the largest in Chapter history. Pre-sale for sponsorship, tables and individual tickets are now available for the May 16, 2020 event. For more information contact Hannah Hoogenboom at 303-209-7718 or HHoogenboom@jdrf.org.