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Patient and Family Fund Lung Cancer Research

After a lung cancer diagnosis caught them by surprise, Bill and Grace Maiola quickly learned about the importance of innovative cancer research and the need for philanthropic support of such research. Through the creation of the Maiola Family Fund for Lung Cancer Research, Bill and Grace hope to aid the efforts of Winship’s faculty as they continue the search for a cure.

During the course of his treatment, Bill has come to understand that Winship is on the verge of something important. “The physicians and researchers at Winship are on the cusp of remarkable breakthroughs, and there is an obvious and tangible need for pioneering research in lung cancer,” he said. “We could not think of a better place to direct our philanthropic funds, as I truly believe that the unique and advanced research capabilities at Winship will continue to help patients like me.”

Much of the Maiolas’ motivation to support Winship so generously came from their primary physician, Dr. Khuri. In addition to serving as Bill’s doctor, Fadlo Khuri, MD, is Winship’s deputy director, professor and chair in the Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology, and the Robert C. Goizueta distinguished chair in cancer research. According to Bill, “Dr. Khuri has an incredible breadth of knowledge. He is truly a dedicated individual, and it is beyond evident that he has committed his professional life to making breakthrough advances in the treatment of cancer.”

Dr. Khuri is confident that the Maiola Family Fund will result in more groundbreaking research. “Gifts from people like the Maiolas enable us to remain on the frontline in the fight against devastating diseases like lung cancer,” he said. “Their contributions support cutting-edge research that is essential to obtain additional funding from the NIH, and we are genuinely grateful that Bill and Grace have put their trust in us with both his treatment and their donation.”

Bill’s former employer, The Coca-Cola Company, matched the family’s initial gift. Now the Maiolas are inviting their friends and family members to contribute to their named fund. “We know that we are dealing with the gold standard at Winship, and we would not be asking others to give if we did not feel complete confidence in the people here,” Bill said.

Most importantly, the Maiolas take comfort in the knowing that they are contributing to something worthwhile. “We are grateful for a lifetime of good fortune, and it is so gratifying to be able to turn around and pass that good fortune on to others,” Grace said. “Supporting the doctors and researchers who will make new discoveries and change lives is a truly meaningful endeavor for us.”