The Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF) held its annual Symposium and Awards Luncheon today at the New York Hilton Midtown.

Breast Cancer Research Foundation 2019 Symposium and Awards Luncheon Honors Vera Wang
Breast Cancer Research Foundation 2019 Symposium and Awards Luncheon Honors Vera Wang

Hosted by ELLE Magazine Editor in Chief Nina Garcia, this year’s luncheon honored fashion legend Vera Wang with the Sandra Taub Humanitarian Award in recognition of her enduring dedication to BCRF and her profound philanthropic spirit, presented by Donna Karan. The Jill Rose Award for scientific excellence was presented to Dr. Eric Winer, of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and Harvard Medical School, for his outstanding contributions as a clinician-scientist which have revolutionized the landscape of breast cancer treatments.

BCRF awarded $66 million in grants to nearly 275 investigators from around the world. Nearly 200 of these grantees were in attendance to be recognized for their innovative projects and contributions to the field. At a scientific retreat the day prior, investigators were provided the rare and critical opportunity to collaborate with their colleagues, across institutions, across disciplines, and across the world.

“I have always been drawn to BCRF in no small part due to its founder, the inimitable Evelyn Lauder, a woman I so admired,” said Vera Wang as she accepted her honor. “In a way this award today both reflects and belongs to her.”

“Back in 2015, I discovered I had a gene mutation that put me at a high risk for breast cancer,” revealed Nina Garcia. “And when you get that news, you think, ‘Why me? What does this mean?’ I would wake up and think, ‘well, when is the day when I’m going to wake up and be diagnosed with cancer?’ Thanks to research, I had options, and it breaks my heart when I know that some women do not have options.”

The day began with a symposium moderated by BCRF Co-Scientific Directors, Drs. Larry Norton of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, and Judy Garber of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. The panelists included Drs. Eric Winer of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Dawn Hershman of Columbia University, and Neil Iyengar of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center.

Honorary Co-Chairs of the event included Kinga Lampert, Leonard A. Lauder, and William P. Lauder. Event Co-Chairs included Madelyn Bucksbaum Adamson, Roberta M. Amon, Anne H. Bass, Amy Goldman Fowler, Roslyn Goldstein, Dee Ocleppo Hilfiger, Gail Hilson, Shelly Kivell, Elyse Lacher, Aerin Lauder, Marigay McKee, Wendi Rose, Arlene Taub, and Simone Winston.

Notable guests included Nina Agdal, Louise Camuto, Alina Cho, Valorie Kondos Field, Jean Godrey-June, Jenna Leigh Green, Sunny Hostin, Carly Hughes, Coco Kopelman, Judy Lauder, Joan Lunden, Gretta Monahan, Emma Myles, Darcy Miller Nussbaum, Kate Rockwell, Lois Robbins, Jennifer Simard, Anne Thompson, and Lori Kanter Tritsch, among many others.

Underwriters of the event included Jody and John Arnhold, Amy P. Goldman Foundation, Roslyn and Leslie Goldstein, Kinga Lampert, Leonard & Judy Lauder Fund, Jeanne Sorensen Siegel and Herbert J. Siegel, ascena retail group inc., Lifetime, Tough Enough to Wear Pink, and Winston Flowers.

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