Online Exclusives

Skin Cancer Foundation Celebrates 30 Years

By Nancy Jeffries, Correspondent | October 15, 2009

Group remains determined to eradicate the disease.

Left to right, Alana de la Garza, Law and Order actress, David Greenberg, Maybelline New York-Garnier, and Bernadette Peters, at Skin Cancer foundation Gala.
For three decades, The Skin Cancer Foundation has spread the word about the dangers of getting too much sun.

“The sun protection message has been heard and skin cancer awareness is at an all-time high today,” said Dr. Perry Robins, president of The Skin Cancer Foundation. The organization, which celebrated its 30th anniversary at this year’s annual Skin Sense Award Gala, held October 6, 2009 held at New York City’s Pierre Hotel, has been working to increase awareness, raise funds and bring its sun protection message to the public with a variety of programs and partnerships that emphasize screening, early detection, and the availability of affordable sun protection products.

Dr. Robins acknowledged the evening’s two honorees, David Greenberg, president, Maybelline New York-Garnier and Mary Sammons, Chairman and CEO, Rite Aid Corporation, for their leadership in promoting skin health. Rite Aid has partnered with the Skin Cancer Foundation for the past several years, bringing the sun protection message to its customers and co-sponsoring the Foundation’s early detection program, the Road to Healthy Skin Tour. Garnier has made cutting-edge, affordable sun protection products available and has highlighted the importance of sun protection through its promotion of the Foundation’s Seal of Recommendation. Both companies are members of the Foundation’s Corporate Leadership Council, where they provide insight and strategic guidance to enhance sun protection initiatives.

Group shot: Left to right, Alana de la Garza, actress, David Greenberg, President Maybelline New York-Garnier, Bernadette Peters, Sam Champion, ABC Good Morning America anchor, Mary Sammons, Chairman and CEO Rite Aid, and Jerry Dowell, President and CEO, Dowell Group.
The evening’s host, Sam Champion, weather anchor of ABC’s Good Morning America, introduced Dr. Rex Amonette, senior vice president of The Skin Cancer Foundation, who provided a statistical overview, citing the importance of prevention, early detection and treatment. “While the skin cancer message is being heard, and 58% of the population is aware of its dangers, only 11% are using skin protection regularly. We asked the media to make skin cancer protection a year round concern and emphasized that with prevention, protection, and early detection we can stop this disease.”

Dr. Deborah Sarnoff, vice president of The Skin Cancer Foundation, and clinical professor of Dermatology at New York University, noted the ten-fold growth of the Foundation’s membership and thanked the media for their messaging.

“The sun protection message was communicated in print, Internet and on-air messages and the Foundation distributed one million pieces of literature, plus a wide variety of advertisements and announcements. In total, we had 3.2 billion touch points. These messages save lives,” said Dr. Sarnoff.

Honorees Share Their Message

Dr. Robins saluted the evening’s honorees by paying tribute to their accomplishments in helping to send the sun protection message to the community at large. Dr. Robins, who is also the president of the International Center for Dermatological Surgery, and has trained 60 doctors from around the world who are now leaders in dermatologic and skin cancer care, is professor emeritus of dermatology at New York University.

“We’ve learned a lot in 30 years. By informing the international dermatological community, we’ve made an impact on people around the world. We have many others to carry on the fight for the next 30 years to help eradicate the epidemic of skin cancer.”

Left to right, David Greenberg, President, Maybelline New York-Garnier, Bernadette Peters, actress, and Mary Sammons, Chairman and CEO, Rite Aid Corporation, at the Skin Sense Award Gala at New York City’s Pierre Hotel.
Jerry Dowell, President and CEO, Dowell Group, presented honoree Mary Sammons, chairman and CEO, Rite Aid, highlighting her leadership and common sense strategies.

This year Rite Aid will be distributing 765,000 free Skin Cancer Guides and is making high quality prevention even more affordable,” noted Ms. Sammons. “As co-sponsor of the Road to Healthy Skin Care, we have made 160 stops across the country to screen individuals for skin cancer and educate the more than 34,000 people who stopped along the way to meet with more than 275 dermatologists who donated their time to the Healthy Skin Care Tour.”

Daniel Baker, MD, senior vice president of The Skin Cancer Foundation, welcomed Law and Order actress and Garnier Nutrisse spokesmodel, Alana de la Garza, who introduced honoree, David Greenberg, president, Maybelline New York-Garnier. Greenberg said,

“With skin care and sun protection we are saving lives. As melanoma is most prevalent among 25-29 year-olds and 90% of visible signs of aging are caused by the sun, it is very important to educate consumers about skin health,”explained Mr. Greenberg.

Garnier emphasizes the importance of skin health with its Nutritioniste line, which features anti-sun damage properties and moisturizers. “Our skin care brand is still in its infancy, but we’re working hard to continue and better communicate our skin care message. We estimate we have reached 320 million with our message and have partnered with Rite Aid to contribute $1 for each Garnier anti-sun product sold at Rite Aid, for skin cancer research,” said Greenberg.

“L’Oreal Labs have developed safe, broad spectrum skin care products and have been able to better assess sun damage with skin substrate alternatives. We’re striving to educate the public and emphasize our motto, ‘Take Care.’ Garnier will continue to do its best to educate the public,” said Mr. Greenberg.

As Dr. Baker noted, “With one million new skin cancers diagnosed each year, it is critical to work to eradicate one of the most prevalent and most preventable diseases.” The celebratory evening’s entertainment featured Tony award-winning actress Bernadette Peters, who gave a special performance and musical tribute for the event.

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