IN PERSPECTIVE

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St. Baldricks Foundation Event

Date: March 23, 2022

Author: Kristina White, Marketing Specialist, TSK Henderson

Did you know that before they turn 20, 1 in every 264 children in the US will be diagnosed with cancer? And that worldwide, a child is diagnosed with cancer every two minutes? And unfortunately, childhood cancer is massively underfunded compared to research for adult cancers.

There are many childhood cancer fundraising organizations, but for a lot of them, their money goes to things like patient support groups, transportation to treatment, family lodging during treatment, and information and education. And while those things are extremely important, it takes organizations like St. Baldrick’s to fill the research funding gap.

St. Baldrick’s was an idea born in 1999 to John Bender and Enda McDonnell when a colleague challenged them to give back in return for their own good fortune in business. Enda had a gloriously thick head of hair, and John had the idea to shave their heads for donations that they would give to a children’s cancer charity. The first event in 2000 involved 19 people shaving their head and raising $104,000. Now St. Baldrick’s has shaved over half a million heads, and is the largest private funder of childhood cancer research grants.

TSK has been involved with St. Baldrick’s for over 15 years. The motivation behind it came when our President and CEO, Windom Kimsey, got the call that all parents fear. His 10 year old daughter was diagnosed with leukemia. Thankfully, she received care from St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital (another amazing organization) and is now a thriving, healthy 25 year old. But Windom’s (and by extension, TSK’s) support of St. Baldrick’s has never wavered since.

TSK participates in the annual McMullan’s shave event with a team called Bald by Design. The team is made up of people from the southern Nevada AEC industry and is consistently one of the top fundraisers for the St. Baldrick’s organization. This year alone they raised over $66,000 and the McMullan’s event raised close to $350,000.

This year Bill Snyder, Windom Kimsey, and I represented TSK on the team. It was my first experience with St. Baldrick’s, and it ended up being one of the coolest things I have done in a long time. Being part of a team that is so passionate for a cause was inspiring and a huge honor. There were definitely some nerves involved, as I have never shaved my head before. But, the support and comradery with my teammates helped me go up on that shave stage with excitement and confidence. I loved the entire experience, and I might even stay a baldy for a while!