Register Now!

November, 2009

Dear Friend:

Saturday, February 13, 2010
The Zebra Ball – Stars for the Stripes

The Amethyst Edition
Please connect to our cause!

Our fund-raising event, The Zebra Ball – Stars for the Stripes, is on the move for 2010: Come celebrate with us at the Hyatt Regency Chicago’s Crystal Ballroom!
This event had been established to provide awareness and financial support for a rare cancer disorder: CARCINOID CANCER and related neuroendocrine tumors (NETs).

Approximately $100,000 has been raised to benefit The Carcinoid Cancer Foundation, Inc. (CCF) from our first three annual events. On February 13, 2010 we will celebrate forty-two years of service provided by CCF in conjunction with promoting Carcinoid Cancer/NETs Awareness Month as proclaimed by Mayor Daley of Chicago. And, of course, we will celebrate Valentine’s Day weekend. (Join us--couples and singles welcomed! No date required!)

So many volunteers work tirelessly behind the scenes to bring an enjoyable evening to attendees of The Zebra Ball – Stars for the Stripes. So many donors contribute heavily to the success of this event. Too many to list here, but all hold a special place in my heart. Thank you!

The 2009 Honorary Committee Roster will be announced by year’s end. Soledad O'Brien from CNN and daughter of a carcinoid cancer survivor served as the inaugural event's Honorary Chair in 2007. In addition to Soledad, the Honorary Committee members included Johnny Morris, Retired Chicago Bears Legend and Sportscaster; Bill Kurtis, Executive Producer, Kurtis Productions; Carrie J. Hightman, President AT&T Illinois (2001-2006); and Heidi Ekstrom, Miss Illinois 2006. Our Honorary Committee grew in 2008 to include Dr. Sandy Goldberg of NBC 5 Chicago News and Ashley Hatfield, Miss Illinois 2007. Gary Zahara (2009 event Emcee and co-host of a weekly sports talk show in the Chicago area on WNDZ AM radio) and Katie Lorenz (Miss Illinois 2008) were The Zebra Ball's newest Honorary Stars for the Stripes. We are extremely grateful for the support of our Honorary Stars.

Each event, we have featured a patient’s or a family member’s or a friend’s story thanks to Soledad O’Brien, Kari Houston Jones, Cecilia Kimberlin, and Coach Don Meyers of Northern State University with Assistant Coach Randy Baruth. These stories help us learn more about life with carcinoid cancer/NETs and each story helps us connect to the cause. Thanks to all who shared their personal story.

Congratulations to our 2009 Grand Raffle Winners, Kirk and Tara Benson of Wheaton, Illinois. Aloha! (Yes, they picked Hawaii as their destination!)

My mother is afflicted with this rare form of cancer known as carcinoid. At her request, I launched this awareness campaign and benefit. Proceeds will support CCF’s mission to educate doctors and patients about carcinoid cancer/NETs and to fund research. The Foundation is a nonprofit organization chartered by the State of New York in 1968 for the purpose of encouraging and supporting research and education on carcinoid tumors and related NETs.

You are not alone is you haven’t heard of carcinoid cancer/NETs. Often no symptoms are evident, so patients and their doctors may be unaware for years that the cancerous tumors are present and growing. Diagnosis might result only if a patient undergoes an unrelated diagnostic procedure, or perhaps surgery, when evidence of an otherwise unsuspected carcinoid/neuroendocrine tumor is observed and verified. A new case of carcinoid cancer or neuroendocrine tumor is diagnosed in the United States on average every 45 minutes.

Zebra stripes are used to symbolize this “camouflaged” condition. In medical schools as a reminder to consider uncommon alternatives when making a diagnosis, students are told, “When you hear hoof beats, don’t assume it’s a horse. It might be a zebra.” Wearing a zebra pin or a zebra-striped bracelet or ribbon shows your support to promote awareness and to fund the education and research needs related to carcinoid cancer or NETs.

This website outlines opportunities for you to show your support for carcinoid cancer/NETs patients, educators, and researchers through The Zebra BallTM – Stars for the StripesTM as a sponsor, patron, attendee, and/or volunteer of the dinner dance. Donations of unique experiences, goods, and/or services are needed for auctions and the raffle. Please peruse the wish list for donation ideas. Financial donations can also be made through or through

In May 2008, I had the privilege of serving as an Advisory Committee Member joining fourteen others (doctors, nurses, nutritionists, and patients) to discuss carcinoid/NET issues. Then in June 2008 and 2009, I attended the American Society for Oncology (ASCO) conference in Chicago (2008) and in Orlando (2009) as an exhibitor at CCF’s patient advocacy booth. We continue our quest to find solutions to remedy the concerns of the carcinoid/NET community. I have served as a Board Director for CCF and now serve as C.E.O. Emeritus with a front-seat view of how CCF assists the patients, medical community, and general public. New support groups for patients are forming. Often, CCF provides seed money for the start-up expenses (i.e., printed material, video library, seminar and conference archives, etc.). Efforts are underway to improve carcinoid/NET information flow through planned enhancements of CCF’s website and newletters. Proposals for educational and research projects are reviewed by CCF’s Medical Advisory Board and those deemed worthy are slated for possible funding.

In 2009, CCF sadly lost a member of the Warner Family and The Foundation’s most passionate advocate (and photographer!): Monica Warner. The Legacy continues…I am pleased to announce that another Warner Family member has joined CCF. Keith Warner, son of Medical Director Dr. Richard Warner, will now serve as C.E.O. of The Foundation.

Of course, more funds will be needed to implement the many plans and to grant money to the educational and research projects; thus, the need continues to hold fund-raising activities like The Zebra Ball – Stars for the Stripes.

In the name of The Zebra Ball – Stars for the Stripes (Carcinoid Cancer) and to promote awareness, I have maintained the “Share the Care” adoption of a zebra at Brookfield Zoo in Illinois -- his name is Nazim. The zebra serves as a symbol of rare diseases and is the symbol used to represent carcinoid cancer/NETs. At the event, we hand out zebra-striped awareness pins and bracelets and encourage attendees to proudly “show their stripes”. I now respectfully ask you to support our cause. Please attend or donate to the cause or become a proxy bidder.

If you have questions about this event, I urge you to e-mail us at or to call 1-847-571-4628. Please join my efforts to promote awareness and to fund the education and research needs related to carcinoid cancer. Encourage your friends, relatives, and business acquaintances to shine as one of our Stars for the Stripes – we need the help of many! Your support may help my mother and others live to see a difference made.

On behalf of The Carcinoid Cancer Foundation, Inc. (, 1-888-722-3132) and my mother, thanks in advance for your consideration and hopefully generous support.

Sharon Murphy Devereaux, Founder

View Message as a PDF

Copyright 2007. All Rights Reserved. - Site Map - Webmasters