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Champions of the Heart
Champions Of The Heart
Advocacy Champion of the Year Senator Nan Rich
Our very first Advocacy Champion, Senator Nan Rich, has a distinguished and vibrant history as one of Florida’s leading advocates for children’s issues and for access to quality health care. From her days serving in the Florida House of Representatives starting in the year 2000, to her service in the Florida State Senate since 2004, and in her current role as the Senate’s Democratic Leader, Nan’s name has become synonymous with the fight for children’s rights and for meeting the needs of the medically underserved. We are grateful to Senator Rich, a leader whose passion and dedication has served to improve the lives of those touched by epilepsy.
Philanthropic Leadership Award The Esman Foundation
The Esman Foundation provides heartfelt, financial support in the fight against devastating diseases.
Theresa Esman created the Saul and Theresa Esman Foundation, Inc. (SATEF) after her husband, Saul, passed away after nearly 50 years of marriage. Mrs. Esman is dedicated to continue her husband’s legacy of helping people. During the recent economic crisis, insufficient funding jeopardized the epilepsy clinics and several facilities were scheduled to close. The closures would have resulted in a loss of vital services and devastated many Floridians living with epilepsy and their families. With the leadership of Murray Levin, SATEF’s Executive Director, EFOF was rescued with a $40,000 a year, multi year pledge and long-term promise to fund our programs in upcoming years from the SATEF. Thanks to the generosity and commitment of the SATEF, the clinics will serve people with epilepsy for the foreseeable future.
Volunteer Hero Award Lizzie and Burt Golumbic and Daniel Rosenfeld
Dedication and hard work best describes Dan Rosenfeld, a 26 year old Naples resident, and his parents, Burt and Lizzie Golumbic. Danny who has had epilepsy for 16 years chose to devote his time to help others with epilepsy and bring support services to the Naples area. Together with his parents and with the help of friends and supporters, the family organized the first “Walk the Talk for Epilepsy” in Naples in 2010. It was an enormous success and raised over $20,000. This past autumn they held their second walk and doubled both the attendance and funds raised. The family started the SWFL Educational Series & Support Group in Naples in 2011 where they help inform and educate the community. Danny is a trained HOPE Mentor, a member of the Foundation’s Project Access program and he volunteered at the epilepsy summer camp program at Camp Boggy Creek where surely he was an inspiration to our campers.
The Epilepsy Foundation of Florida is Proud to Inaugurate the Patricia M. Dean, ARNP Beacon Award
The award is presented in recognition of an individual or entity that demonstrates diligent and tireless efforts to improve the lives of those living with epilepsy through exceptional and passionate care services.
No other individual than Pat Dean has had such a profound and all-encompassing impact on the thousands of Florida’s children living with epilepsy. From being involved in epilepsy research to running the Comprehensive Epilepsy Center of Miami Children’s Hospital, to yearly volunteering at a summer camp for children with epilepsy for over 20 years - a camp that she helped establish, to serving on the Board and as President at the Epilepsy Foundation of Florida and the national Epilepsy Foundation. Pat brings hope and daylight into the lives of so many contendingwith the impacts of epilepsy and she makes the world a compassionate and less confusing place for their parents. Many a mother who has met Pat Dean leaves with a feeling they have a new best friend and that life will be better thanks to Pat. She was recently awarded the J. Kiffin Penry Award for Excellence in Epilepsy Care by the American Epilepsy Society and those involved in the Florida epilepsy movement describe her as a “beacon of hope”. Pat Dean inspires us all to be true “care-givers”.
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Champions of the Heart 2013
Champions Of The Heart
Advocacy Champion of the Year
Honorable Adam Hasner - is a former Majority Leader in the Florida House of Representatives who served District 87 in Palm Beach and Broward Counties from 2002-2010. During his tenure as a State Representative, Adam was a passionate advocate for Epilepsy awareness in Tallahassee. Since then, he has continued to show his dedication to our mission, most recently in our effort to retain state funding that provides critical services to those with Epilepsy throughout Florida. For Adam, this is not just another cause --- it’s one that hits close to home. His wife Jillian is living with Epilepsy and like many of us she looks to organizations like ours to address this issue responsibly. We are truly thankful for Mr. Hasner’s exceptional effort and generosity and are pleased to recognize him as our Advocacy Champion of the Year!
Philanthropic Leadership Award
Jen Klaassens of Wasie Foundation: Jen is known for her ability to lead by example. She is the Vice President of programs for The Wasie Foundation, an independent philanthropic organization that offers grants and support to South Florida non-profits focused on children’s healthcare and education. Jen also demonstrates her dedication to improving the lives of others by serving as a board member to various non-profit organizations. The Wasie Foundation was instrumental in supporting Camp Boggy Creek--- a week-long camp held annually for children with epilepsy. This program was a success achieved in the spirit of collaboration between our two organizations and with the hope of continuing our fruitful relationship. We are proud to recognize Jen and the Wasie foundation with our Philanthropic Leadership Award for its invaluable efforts.
Jen left on April 7 to climb Mt. Everest in support of one of her other causes, namely to fight human trafficking. You can follow her progress on her Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/freedomclimb. We wish her a safe and successful trip and salute her on her dedication to so many important issues.
Patricia M. Dean, ARNP, Beacon Award
Mark Epstein, M.D. - Dr. Epstein is Medical Director of the Dan Marino Center - Miami Children's Hospital, Assistant Clinical Professor of Neurology at the University of Miami School of Medicine at Miami Children’s Hospital and Clinical Associate Professor of Neurology at Florida International University School of Medicine. After graduating from Harvard University, Dr. Epstein attended Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York. He has published and lectured extensively on a variety of topics in the field of child neurology including ADHD, autism, Tourette syndrome, epilepsy, and sleep disorders. For years he has generously donated his time to the week-long Camp Boggy Creek held annually for children with Epilepsy. His empowering spirit, kindness and trustworthy demeanor leave our kids knowing they are exactly where they need to be. We are proud to honor him with our Patricia Dean, ARNP, Beacon Award for his generous effort!
Volunteer Hero Award
David, Shoshi and Gabi Domatov– David, Shoshi and Gabi Domatov are distinguished epilepsy advocates who have shown remarkable results in their efforts to raise awareness and recruit participants for EFOF’s Broward Walk The Talk fundraising events. Since 2009 Shoshi Domatov has consistently managed to bring 100+ participants to our Broward walks every year. Her dedication is exemplified by her invaluable and tireless efforts to hand-write every invitation she sends out. Her son Gabi has had epilepsy since he was 16 months old and is equally active in his efforts as a member of EFOF’s youth group. Gabi consistently surpasses his fundraising goals, proving himself to be a shining start of the epilepsy-advocacy movement. The Damatov family is a prime example of what one family can do to positively impact the lives of hundreds of other families. For this, we proudly present them with our Volunteer Hero Award.