The Southern Florida Chapter of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society announced the winners of its 2013 Man and Woman of the Year campaign in Fort Lauderdale, where a total of $361,944 was raised by all candidates. Steven Ziff, Vice President of Marketing & Brand Strategy for the Florida Panthers, was crowned the Fort Lauderdale Man of the Year (he raised $100,700) and Ellen Bettridge, President of Silversea Cruises, was crowned the Fort Lauderdale Woman of the Year (she raised $91,171).
â€œThe 2013 Fort Lauderdale Man and Woman of the Year winners and candidates are some of the most devoted volunteers that have ever been involved in the campaign,â€ said Ana Vento, President of Events of Vento Designs and Co-Chair of the 2013 Man and Woman of the Year Fort Lauderdale campaign.Â Adam Kuperstein, NBC 6 news anchor, was the event Emcee.
The Man & Woman of the Year campaign is a 10-week program to raise funds to help find cures for blood cancers. The campaign recruited candidates in the community who agreed to conduct their own fundraising campaigns and compete to earn the coveted title of Man and Woman of the Year. â€œIt was an honor to work with each of their dedicated teams, our committed sponsors and the inspiring Boy and Girl of the Year,â€ said Matthew F. Sacco, Vice President of Communications & Public Affairs for Sunrise Sports & Entertainment and the Florida Panthers Hockey Club and Co-Chair of the 2013 Man and Woman of the Year Fort Lauderdale campaign.
Each of the candidates raised funds in honor of the Boy and Girl of the Year, who are local blood cancer patient survivors and sources of inspiration to their families and to others. The 2013 Fort Lauderdale Boy and Girl of the Year were Nour and Amanda, respectively. In 2008, at the age of 5 Â½, Nour began to complain about pain in his foot. After the pain persisted, doctors performed a CAT scan and blood test only to discover that Nour had Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. He began treatment immediately, ultimately spending his sixth birthday in the hospital receiving chemotherapy. Through it all, Nour has remained strong and vibrant. At age 10, Nour is now in remission and feels very lucky to be alive.
In 2004, halfway through the first grade, a teacher noticed that Amandaâ€™s face and neck were swollen. An x-ray of her chest revealed a large tumor and a diagnosis of Stage 3 Non-Hodgkinâ€™s Lymphoblastic Lymphoma. After two years of aggressive level IV chemotherapy, spinal and leg injections, losing her long brown hair, transfusions, and three surgeries, Amanda is now six years cancer free. Now in the 10th grade, Amanda has volunteered over 120 hours in her community, donated her hair to Locks of Love, plays flag football and is a National Merit Candidate.