Annual Activities Report

For Fiscal Year: May 1, 2016 - April 30, 2017

We thank you for being part of the John Wayne Cancer Foundation community and for your support this past year as we continue John Wayne’s fight against cancer. We are pleased to present this report that will show how YOU as well as our other donors, supporters, volunteers and friends have helped to advance our work in cancer research, education and awareness. We are grateful for your support. We hope after your review of our report, you will feel good about your important role in our work.


“Give the American people a good cause, and there’s nothing they can’t lick.”

– John Wayne


At A Glance

An Infographic Report
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Preventing Skin Cancer Through Education

Block The Blaze

Block the Blaze, premiere program of the John Wayne Cancer Foundation, aims to educate youth on skin cancer with an emphasis on skin cancer prevention and self-screening. The program has been able to expand rapidly as a result of our partnerships with the California Surf Lifesaving Association (CSLSA), United States Lifesaving Association (USLA) and USA Swimming Foundation.

"You folks rocked. Our program loved your presentation. We want you to back every year. The sunblock was the best. I had a kid wear it all over his body for days!! Great impact on our kids.”

- Karl Blum

"Thank you so much to the Foundation for what they have done to fight skin cancer. I can attest to having seen my students learn firsthand how to prevent injury and cancer. A million thanks!”

- Casey Graham

"You guys are great! Last summer my daughter did OC Junior Lifeguards and came home with her new favorite John Wayne hat, sunscreen, and received an amazing educational chat by your staff!"

- Melissa Sorenson

Leading National Research Programs

John Wayne Alumni Fellows

We are proud to report on our work with the more than 150 alumni fellows of the John Wayne Cancer Institute this past year. JWCF funded six alumni fellows to the World Cancer Congress in late October, 2016 to present papers on their relevant research and practice topics. The World Cancer Congress is sponsored by the Union for International Cancer Care (UICC) representing organizations from all over the world. John Wayne Cancer Foundation had all the papers submitted accepted and was the most represented foundation at the paper presentations.

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"Alumni of John Wayne Fellowships form a remarkable network of professionals united in the fight against cancer. This group includes many of the current leaders in the field across the nation, with many graduates running training programs of their own. Creation of the John Wayne Alumni Fellows Program, which fosters the success both of current fellows and of alumni, gives us a much greater ability to engage with each other, collaborate and continue the legacy of education and innovation started by the Wayne Family and Donald Morton so many years ago.”

- Mark Faries, MD, FACS

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A Day of Focus on the Global Fight Against Cancer

World Cancer Day

We Can, I Can: the theme of World Cancer Day on February 4, 2017. Sponsored by the Union for International Cancer Control (UICC) in connection with the World Health Organization, World Cancer Day’s (WCD) call to action is to reduce cancer deaths by 25% by 2025. The John Wayne Cancer Foundation supported UICC through participation in WCD that included a rigorous social media campaign across all channels. JWCF was as a result included on the UICC’s WCD Map of Impact Campaign. Facebook posts on WCD (2/4/17) reached 57,384 people
compared to 25,046 reached on WCD in 2016.

A Call Encouraging Sun Safety Awareness

Don't Fry Day

For the eighth year, the National Council on Skin Care Prevention (NCSCP) declared the Friday before Memorial Day, as “Don’t Fry Day”(DFD) to Encourage Sun Safety Awareness. Our first year of advocacy for DFD, we promoted on all social media channels the importance of DFD and explained the significance of skincare awareness during the month of May. Olympian and Block the Blaze spokesperson, Summer Sanders, shared her inspirational story and personal connection to skin cancer during DFD. For JWCF's first year participating in DFD, Facebook posts reached 5,204 people.


Fighting Cancer with Courage, Strength and Grit

Team John Wayne


Through our athletic fundraising program, Team John Wayne, runners and walkers of all levels race in honor or memory of those affected by cancer. This peer-to-peer fundraising platform allows team members to engage their personal and professional networks to maximize fundraising potential. In the last year, Team John Wayne strengthened its national presence with the addition of key events in both San Antonio, TX and Dallas, TX. Partnering with the well-known Rock ‘n’ Roll race series, Team John Wayne’s Texas expansion drew 80 new participants and engaged a growing volunteer base who are passionate about John Wayne’s legacy in fighting cancer. Other key race partners included the OC Marathon and various Tough Mudder obstacle events across the country.

"I talked about doing Tough Mudder for years, but every year I always found a reason not to do it. When I scrolled through the website this year, I found myself stopping on the Charity tab. Instead of finding a reason not to do Tough Mudder, I found a reason to do it – John Wayne Cancer Foundation (JWCF). When I went to the JWCF website, the first thing I saw was “bringing courage, strength, and grit to the fight against cancer.” I knew immediately that I wanted to cross that electrical wire finish as a member of Team John Wayne. We all have a story when it comes to cancer, whether it is a personal battle or that of a loved one. My story changed this past year when someone I love very much got diagnosed and it was the first time that the feeling of helplessness set in. JWCF works tirelessly to make a difference in all of our stories and by joining their team, now I can help. I am not a doctor or a researcher, but I have the grit to get myself over a 15’ tall quarter pipe covered in mud.” Sammi Peck, TJW Member

Raising Funds and Creating Awareness

Show Your Grit

In 2016 we launched our new platform campaign, #ShowYourGrit. Supporters everywhere were called upon to show their grit by snapping a cowboy hat selfie and uploading it to social media using the hashtag #ShowYourGrit. Every upload triggered a $1 donation from our corporate partners. Between John Wayne’s birthday and Father’s Day, 2016, #ShowYourGrit raised funds to support JWCF programs and created an awareness movement that was seen by more than 15 million people.

Our Exclusive Membership Program

Join John Wayne

More than 270 individuals have joined John Wayne’s Community honoring the legacy and hegend of John Wayne in the fight against cancer. In its second year, our membership program continues to provide an avenue for key information about our work and special incentives.