March Forth, a Colorectal Cancer Alliance prevention and screening initiative, today announced the launch of its Philadelphia colorectal cancer prevention program. Starting in Philadelphia, March Forth is mounting a national effort to attack colorectal cancer by driving up screening rates. Working with partners, families, and advocates across the country, the initiative intends to close the screening gap and save 100,000 lives in the next 10 years.
Colorectal cancer is the second-leading cause of cancer-related deaths in the United States. An astounding 50,000 Americans die each year from colorectal cancer, and the number is growing rapidly for those under the age of 50. Tragically, most of these deaths should have been prevented. Unlike many other cancers, colorectal cancer is a surface cancer that is easily detected and treated. It is completely preventable when caught early yet extremely deadly when caught late.
Alliance co-founder and past chairman of the board, Kevin Lewis, connected Lee Dranikoff with the Alliance three years ago, when Lee’s wife Joanna was diagnosed with late stage early onset colorectal cancer at age 47. On March 4, 2016, at age 47, Joanna lost her battle to colorectal cancer, leaving behind Lee and their three children. The Dranikoff family, in partnership with the Colorectal Cancer Alliance, has been a driving force behind establishing March Forth and pushing the cause forward.
“March Forth is fiercely determined to eradicate colorectal cancer in our lifetime,” said Lee Dranikoff, March Forth founding member and board member of the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. “We believe colorectal cancer is a disease that must be stopped within our lifetime, so we work with great urgency. No family should have to experience the loss that we have. We know we can prevent this horrible disease.”
Today, Philadelphia has one of the lowest screening rates of any major city in the United States at 44 percent. A new foundation, March Forth, was created to ensure 100 percent focus on increased screening rates and prevention. Core to March Forth is building awareness and creating a sense of urgency about the importance of screening and prevention. For more information about Philadelphia survivors and caregivers, visit ccalliance.org/marchforth
“To succeed in Philadelphia, we are establishing a steering committee of like-minded thought leaders and influencers who will serve as a convener of stakeholders as well as facilitate collaboration with our various partners,” said Joseph Frick, colon cancer survivor, March Forth founding member and former chairman of the board of the Colorectal Cancer Alliance, retired CEO and current board member of Independence Blue Cross, and senior advisor at Diversified Search. “Over time, March Forth will also raise money to support the program in Philadelphia, its expansion to other targeted markets, and ultimately, drive significant impact across our country.”
March Forth founding members include:
John Backus—Colorectal Cancer Alliance Chairman of the Board and Managing Partner at Proof VC;
John M. Daly, MD, FACS—Colorectal Cancer Alliance Board Member; Harry C. Donahoo Professor, Surgery, Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University; Surgical Director, William Maul Measey Institute for Clinical Simulation and Patient Safety; Emeritus Dean, Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University; Attending Surgeon, Fox Chase Cancer Center;
Lee Dranikoff—Colorectal Cancer Alliance Board Member and Managing Director at American Securities;
Joseph A. Frick—Former Colorectal Cancer Alliance Chairman of the Board; retired CEO and current board member of Independence Blue Cross; and Senior Advisor at Diversified Search;
Kevin T. Lewis—Colorectal Cancer Alliance Co-Founder and Former Chairman of the Board and Principal at PricewaterhouseCoopers
David Schoeman—Colorectal Cancer Alliance Board Member and Senior Partner at McKinsey & Company.
“We believe colorectal cancer is a senseless killer that must be stopped,” said Michael Sapienza, CEO of the Colorectal Cancer Alliance. “Our vision is a city without colorectal cancer. We know our vision is possible with the right focus, partners, and financial commitment.”
About Colorectal Cancer Alliance
The Colorectal Cancer Alliance is a national nonprofit committed to ending colorectal cancer. Working with our nation of passionate allies, we diligently support the needs of patients and families, caregivers, and survivors; eagerly raise awareness of preventative screening; and continually strive to fund critical research. As allies in the struggle, we are fiercely determined to end colorectal cancer within our lifetime. For more information, visit ccalliance.org.
About March Forth
March Forth, a Colorectal Cancer Alliance prevention and screening foundation, is fiercely determined to eradicate colorectal cancer in our lifetime. Starting in Philadelphia, March Forth is mounting a national effort to attack colorectal cancer by driving up screening rates. Working with our partners, families and advocates across the country, we will save 100,000 American lives in the next 10 years. For Philadelphia survivor and caregiver stories, and more information on March Forth, visit ccalliance.org/marchforth.
Director of Marketing & Communications
Colorectal Cancer Alliance