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Million Dollar Endowement Given by Local Maryland Couple to Breast Cancer Services at Johns Hopkins - 12/10/2008

Million Dollar Endowement Given by Local Maryland Couple to Breast Cancer Services at Johns Hopkins

Release Date: December 10, 2008

For Frank and Charmayne Dierker, breast cancer advocacy is a family affair.  The Chestertown, Md., couple have made a $1 million gift to establish The Frank and Charmayne Dierker Endowed Leadership Fund in Breast Cancer at Johns Hopkins.

The inspiration for the gift actually began more than 16 years ago when their daughter, Lillie Shockney, was first diagnosed with breast cancer.  Shockney is now a two-time survivor of breast cancer. The endowment will fund all those that follow her as administrative director of the Johns Hopkins Avon Foundation Breast Center.

Shockney’s remarkable service at Johns Hopkins spans more than 25 years. She is best known for breast cancer patient advocacy, patient and consumer education, support, quality care, and community outreach, earning many awards and national recognition along the way.  Her most recent tribute was becoming the first registered nurse and non-physician in Johns Hopkins history to receive The Johns Hopkins University Distinguished Service Assistant Professor of Breast Cancer award. As a driving force behind the scenes at the Johns Hopkins Avon Foundation Breast Center, she has touched many patients’ lives.

The Dierkers know how to cope with the realities of cancer and work hard at helping other families and individuals with their own personal struggles with the disease.  “Mothers Supporting Daughters with Breast Cancer,” is a national nonprofit organization co-founded in 1995 by Charmayne and Lillie that offers free services for one-on-one support and guidance to mothers who have daughters battling breast cancer.

“I come from parents who promoted leadership in their children says Lillie, “My folks are proud of the pioneering work I have done in the field of breast cancer and want to ensure it continues in perpetuity. Both being cancer survivors themselves and very dedicated to supporting others, this is an extraordinary way to show their support to cancer patients in the future.”

Mr. and Mrs. Dierker were publically recognized for their contribution at a recent gala benefiting The Johns Hopkins Avon Foundation Breast Center's Education, Outreach and Survivorship Fund.

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