Brenda Nease Donates $100,000 for Melanoma Symposium

Winship Advisory Board member Brenda Nease donated $100,000 to develop a melanoma symposium in honor of Dr. David H. Lawson, her Winship physician.

On any given Thursday afternoon, visitors to Winship are greeted by piano music played by Winship Advisory Board member Brenda Nease. The baby grand piano was a gift through the Brenda Nease Fund, which was established to support special projects at Winship. Recently, Nease contributed an additional $100,000 to the fund for an annual melanoma symposium in honor of Dr. David H. Lawson, her Winship physician for many years.

Nease credits Dr. Lawson with saving her life when she had breast cancer more than a decade ago yet has focused her gift on melanoma, the most serious form of skin cancer, in honor of Dr. Lawson’s decision to devote much of his career to this rarer form of cancer.

“As my oncologist, Dr. Lawson always showed me so much compassion and caring,” said Nease. “I wanted to do something special to honor him, something meaningful that would further his research interests. It makes me very happy to give him this opportunity to help other people.”

Dr. Lawson expressed his deep appreciation for “this wonderful gift that will allow our multi-disciplinary melanoma team to accomplish something that has been on our priority list for a long time—bringing together melanoma experts from across the region to share expertise and accelerate future advances.”

One of Winship’s roles as an NCI-designated cancer center is to serve as a source of information and continuing education for patients, their families and also for community physicians. Symposia have the potential to improve care for thousands of patients by ensuring that medical providers have the latest information available about treat ment options and research advances. The symposium, to be held in February, 2013, will accomplish both educational goals at once.r of Dr. David H. Lawson, her Winship physician for many years.

“Gifts from patients to their personal physicians affirm the value of the patient-physician relationship and the level of excellence in care received,” said Dr. Curran, Winship executive director. “Dr. Lawson and I are honored by Mrs. Nease’s tangible and extremely generous expression of gratitude.”

“Mrs. Nease faced cancer in her own life with grace and courage,” said Dr. Lawson. “It is very gratifying to see the difference she makes for others through her gifts of music and philanthropy.”

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