Patient Care

Community Celebrates Local Survivors, Wilmot Cancer Center

May. 5, 2010
Discovery Ball brings $730,000 for research, clinical programs
Oral cancer survivor Lou Iovoli, right, accepts the Inspiration Award from Richard I. Fisher, M.D., director of the Wilmot Cancer Center, during the 11th annual Discovery Ball.

Hundreds of people celebrated the many clinical and research successes of the James P. Wilmot Cancer Center during its 11th annual Discovery Ball on May 1. The 730 people who attended the gala fundraiser raised (after expenses) $730,000 to support local cancer research and care.

A highlight of the evening was the presentation of the Inspiration Award, the center’s highest honor, to Lou Iovoli. The Victor man is an oral cancer survivor who overcame his disease and went on to complete an IronMan triathlon last year.

As he accepted the award, Iovoli spoke of the difficult moments during his care and of the Ironman and how spectators cheered him on by ringing cowbells. He then challenged the Ball guests to ring cowbells at each table and pledge their support for the Wilmot Cancer Center. The room was filled with the clanging of bells and he ultimately raised nearly $150,000.

“Each year we are proud to share the incredible stories of our survivors and Lou Iovoli’s courage, strength and determination inspired our patients and the doctors, nurses and staff throughout the Wilmot Cancer Center,” said Richard I. Fisher, M.D., director of the Wilmot Cancer Center.

The Ball, chaired by Jim and Donna Hammer, was a success because of the volunteer effort and corporate sponsors that support the Wilmot Cancer Center.

The Wilmot Cancer Center is the Finger Lakes Region’s leader for cancer care and research. The 400 doctors, nurses, scientists and staff provide care for more than 10,000 people each year and are dedicated to finding cures.