Be The Match® will honor the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) with the Rod Carew Leadership Award, which is presented annually to an extraordinary community leader for their dedication to saving lives.
The partnership between FDNY and Be The Match began in 1990, when a small group of firefighters, whose families had been affected by leukemia, encouraged their fellow firefighters to join the national Be The Match Registry® of potential marrow donors. The response was immediate. Today, more than 8,000 FDNY members stand ready to donate their life-saving cells. With nearly 100 percent of new trainees at the fire academy joining the registry each year, they now make up one of the largest groups on the registry. To date, 171 FDNY members have donated marrow to a patient in need — some more than once. This commitment and dedication is unparalleled.
“They are courageous people to begin with and their day-to-day work is to help others,” said Jeffrey Chell, M.D., chief executive officer of Be The Match. “We share the same daily purpose: to save lives. We could not be more grateful for their partnership.”
FDNY Chief of Department, James Leonard, will accept the award on May 14, 2015, at a Be The Match fundraising dinner held in New York City. The event will celebrate 25 years of partnership with the FDNY and feature the first-time meeting between FDNY firefighter John Schroeder and his marrow transplant recipient in front of an audience of Be The Match supporters.
About the Rod Carew Leadership Award
The Rod Carew Leadership Award is given annually to a person or organization who makes a profound difference in the lives of patients and their families. It is named for former Minnesota Twins baseball player and Hall of Famer Rod Carew, who raised national awareness of the need for marrow donors while searching for a marrow donor for his daughter, Michelle. Other recipients of this award include Rod Carew, the United States Postal Service, Jeff Gordon Children’s Foundation, and Robin Roberts.