Princeton Chapter annual Lift For Life event set for April 27th and is open to the public


PRINCETON LFL 17 GRAPHICThe Princeton Chapter of Uplifting Athletes will hold its annual Lift For Life to support the rare disease community on April 27 at 4:45 p.m. outside the Frist Campus Center.

Lift For Life is the signature fundraising event for the Uplifting Athletes nationwide network of chapters led by college football student-athletes.

Each chapter embraces the mission of Uplifting Athletes using college football as a platform to inspire the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport.

The 2017 Princeton Chapter Lift For Life is a competition that will pit the offense vs. the defense head-to-head on max bench press repetitions.

Fans can pledge based on the total number of bench press repetitions either the Team Offense or Team Defense averages. So choose your favorite side of the ball and pledge to support the Princeton Chapter in its quest to tackle rare diseases by visiting the Tigers fundraising site.

Proceeds from the Princeton Chapter annual Lift For Life supports Uplifting Athletes and its commitment to life skills development, patient focused programs and rare disease research.

Today, the challenges faced by the rare disease community are bigger than any one individual, team or organization can tackle alone. The Stony Brook Chapter, along with a nationwide network of teams, is uniquely positioned to educate and engage the local community and shine a spotlight on rare diseases.

The Princeton Chapter started tackling rare diseases in 2011 when it joined Uplifting Athletes. The student-athlete led Princeton Chapter serves the rare disease community in honor of Jordan Culbreath, a former Tigers running back.

Culbreath was diagnosed with a rare blood disorder and battled through his rare disease diagnosis to return to the field and finish his playing career. His inspiring story of hope not only led his Princeton teammates to form a chapter, Culbreath was also honored as the 2011 Uplifting Athletes Rare Disease Champion.

Please support the Princeton Chapter and help the Tigers reach their $15,000 team Lift For Life goal.

 

Sixth annual Uplifting Athletes Gridiron Gala was a night of inspiration


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Uplifting Athletes held its sixth annual Gridiron Gala last weekend at the Keystone Building in Harrisburg, Pa. It was a fantastic evening of celebration focused on positively impacting the rare disease community.

We truly appreciate Dr. Phillip Abbosh, BethAnn Telford, Rob Long and Brett Brackett for joining us and sharing their inspirational stories shining a light on the four Uplifting Athletes programming initiatives.

Dr. Abbosh is a researcher at Fox Chase in Philadelphia and received a research grant from Uplifting Athletes. Telford is a rare brain cancer survivor who has become an advocate and fundraiser. Long is also a rare brain cancer survivor and serves as the inspiration for Syracuse starting an Uplifting Athletes Chapter and Brackett is a former NFL player who served as a past president of the Penn State Chapter.

The support of our Gridiron Gala guests and sponsors goes a long way in helping Uplifting Athletes bring our mission to life across the country as we inspire the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport.

 

Thanks to everyone who came out for the celebration and a special thank you to our sponsors for making the 2016 Uplifting Athletes Gridiron Gala our most successful ever.

Together … We Are … Stronger!

 

 

Former Illinois Chapter President Joe Spencer wins Coach Wooden Citizen Cup Award


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Former Illini football center and Illinois Chapter of Uplifting Athletes President Joe Spencer recently won the 2017 Coach Wooden Citizen Cup Award given to the most outstanding role model among athletes.

Athletes for a Better World announced Spencer as its winner from among the four finalists Tuesday evening in Atlanta.

The award, named after famed UCLA men’s basketball coach John Wooden, is given to one college, professional and high school athlete (or athletic figure) per year for character and leadership both on and off the field and for contributions to sport and society. Athletes for a Better World presented the Wooden Cup for the 13th year.

Recipients of the Coach Wooden Citizenship Cup are determined by the Wooden Cup Selection Committee after reviewing voting by the Board of Directors and over 100 distinguished individuals involved in athletics across the country.

Spencer’s work in the community and the classroom has been incredible during his four years in Champaign. The 2016 Big Ten Sportsmanship Award honorees’ long list of community involvement includes serving as president of Illinois’ Uplifting Athletes Chapter, president of the Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, raising nearly $40,000 for charity in two years by organizing the Illinois Chapter Lift for Life, helping organize Illinois’ student-athlete variety show that has raised over $80,000 in the last five years, being a “Big” at the local Big Brothers Big Sisters, spearheading the Leadership Summit for local middle school students, volunteering at the Special Olympics, and visiting nearly every elementary school in Champaign-Urbana.

Spencer was a team captain for the 2016 Illini football team and earned All-Big Ten honorable mention honors by the media. He started 37 games during his Illinois career, including 11 this season. Spencer is enrolled in the MBA program at the University of Illinois after earning a bachelor’s degree in finance in May 2016.

Seven individuals from four Uplifting Athletes Chapters run Pro Day Reps For Rare Diseases campaigns


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For three straight years, members of the Uplifting Athletes chapter network have run campaigns during the NFL Combine to shine a spotlight on the rare disease community.

This year three players ran Reps For Rare Diseases fundraising and awareness campaigns at the NFL Combine.

Not all chapter members with NFL aspirations were extended combine invites, but many participated in their team Pro Day and several ran Reps For Rare Diseases campaigns.

Four schools, Illinois, Maryland, Florida State and Arizona, had individuals volunteer to run Reps For Rare Diseases campaigns during their Pro Day events in March.

All total the Pro Day Reps for Rare Diseases campaigns raised more than $5,000 to support the Uplifting Athletes mission to inspire the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport.

Four players, former chapter president Joe Spencer, Michael Martin, Rob Bain and Ryan Frain, teamed up to run individual campaigns under the Illinois Chapter umbrella.

Rod Johnson represented Florida State, former chapter President Josh Kern carried the flag for Arizona and Roman Braglio stepped up at Maryland.

Thanks to all the fans who supported these seven individuals representing four student-athlete led Uplifting Athletes Chapters on NFL Pro Days across the country.

Roman Braglio adds Maryland to 2017 Pro Day Reps For Rare Diseases campaign roster


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Former Maryland defensive end Roman Braglio will make his upcoming NFL Pro Day a platform to inspire the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport.

Braglio, a 2016 team captain, is excited about his Reps For Rare Diseases campaign to raise money for life saving rare disease research with Uplifting Athletes.

Fans can pledge any amount for every bench press repetition Braglio performs at Maryland Pro Day on March 29th by visiting pledgeit.org/roman-braglio.

The Maryland Chapter is approaching a decade of service to the rare disease community. The original inspiration for the Terrapins to join Uplifting Athletes in 2009 was the centered around legendary Maryland quarterback Boomer Esiason and his son Gunner’s battle with cystic fibrosis.

Being involved with the Maryland Chapter and Lift For Life was an important part of Braglio’s college experience and is why he chose to launch his Reps For Rare Diseases campaign.

“As I take a step toward my NFL dream, I’d like to use this opportunity to give back,” Braglio said. “I have committed my performance at the Maryland Pro Day to support Uplifting Athletes and its mission.”

Make your pledge now to join Braglio in the fight against rare diseases during Maryland Pro Day.

 

 

Former Florida State offensive tackle Rod Johnson doing Reps For Rare Diseases at 2017 Pro Day March 28


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Former two-time All-ACC offensive tackle Rod Johnson will make his upcoming NFL Pro Day a platform to inspire the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport.

Johnson is excited about his Reps For Rare Diseases campaign to raise money for life saving rare disease research with Uplifting Athletes.

Fans can pledge any amount for every bench press repetition Johnson performs at Florida State Pro Day on March 28th by visiting his fundraising site.

Florida State’s inspiration for joining Uplifting Athletes to help tackle rare diseases in 2013 was head coach Jimbo Fisher’s son Ethan and his battle with the rare blood disorder Fanconi anemia.

Being involved with the FSU Chapter and Lift For Life in support of his head coach was an important part of Johnson’s college experience and is why he chose to launch his Reps For Rare Diseases campaign.

“As I take a step toward my NFL dream, I’d like to use this opportunity to give back,” Johnson said. “I have committed my performance at the Florida State Pro Day to support Uplifting Athletes and its mission.”

Make your pledge now to join Johnson in the fight against rare diseases during Florida State Pro Day.

Former Arizona tight end Josh Kern doing Reps For Rare Diseases at 2017 Pro Day March 24


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Former Arizona tight end Josh Kern will make his NFL Pro Day a platform to inspire the rare disease community with hope through the power of sport.

The former Uplifting Athletes Arizona Chapter President is excited about his Reps For Rare Diseases campaign to raise money for life saving rare disease research with Uplifting Athletes.

Fans can pledge any amount for every bench press repetition Kern performs at Arizona Pro Day on March 24th by visiting his fundraising site.

Arizona’s inspiration for joining Uplifting Athletes, rare disease patient and big-time Wildcats fan Andrew Valdez, lost his battle with Cystic Fibrosis in 2015. Kern was a pallbearer and spoke at Valdez’s funeral.

Being the Arizona Chapter President was an important part of Kern’s college experience and is why he chose to launch his Reps For Rare Diseases campaign.

“As I take a step toward my NFL dream, I’d like to use this opportunity to give back,” Kern said. “I have committed my performance at the Arizona Pro Day to support Uplifting Athletes and its mission.”

Make your pledge now to join Kern in the fight against rare diseases during Arizona Pro Day.