One of the Community Care Initiatives the Office of Institutional Effectiveness (IE) chose to support this year was the annual fight against Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig’s Disease, as it is commonly known.


A dear friend and co-worker, appropriately named Hope, greatly impacted our department when she brought her community interests to us.   Many of us joined her in activities to fight ALS. This “fatal disease leads to an inability of individuals to speak, move, and eventually breathe on their own. It kills someone every 90 minutes.” This definition is from the promotional materials provided by The Roanoke Walk to Defeat ALS®. Their vision is to “Create a world without ALS.” Their mission is “Leading the fight to treat and cure ALS through global research and nationwide advocacy while also empowering people with Lou Gehrig’s disease and their families to live fuller lives by providing them with compassionate care and support.”  Hope’s “Pops” has suffered with ALS for eight years, five more than the six months to three years he was given to believe was even possible. IE is very proud to be associated with this wonderful, caring, community support group along with Hope and her extended family.


There were two ways IE personnel were involved in this community effort:

  1. Some of us joined the local ALS Association – DC.MD/VA Chapter at the Roanoke Walk on Sunday, October 13, 2013. It was held at Hollins University in Roanoke.


  1. We all participated in the office Penny Wars. Penny Wars are a simple fundraising idea for any Walk to Defeat ALS team. In this game, there were multiple teams. Teams place pennies into their team’s container, while placing silver coins and paper money to count as negative points in competing teams’ containers. (The Java Junkies won this year – go Java Junkies!)

Please consider finding a way to help fight this cruel disease in your area.


Every 90 minutes this disease steels one more loved one away from those who care.