The goal of any organization whose mission supports a cause is to ensure the resources at their disposal are utilized in a manner which makes the biggest impact or advances. As Lupus Link Minnesota defines our path forward, our board has been diligent that our focus remains on supporting lupus awareness and lupus research efforts which propel us towards an eventual cure. As such, to ensure the funding of leading-edge autoimmune research here in Minnesota, Lupus Link Minnesota is announcing the transfer of the Susan B. Meckstroth Endowment to the University of Minnesota Medical School’s Center for Autoimmune Diseases Research (CADRe).
The endowment, created nearly 30 years ago by the B. John Barry family, was named in honor of B. John Barry’s sister, who passed away in 1986 at the age of 47 from lupus. Initial founders of the endowment also included the Pohlads, Daytons, McGlynns and others. With a current value of approximately $1.2 million, the endowment has as its mission funding research aimed at curing lupus.
With the transfer of the endowment from Lupus Link Minnesota to CADRe, an organization already deeply committed to and invested in autoimmune research, we hope to ignite a new era of opportunity and hope for autoimmune research here in Minnesota.
The development of CADRe, in 2017, was led by faculty in the Division of Rheumatic and Autoimmune Diseases who saw a need for a center in which investigators could come together to discuss their research and address the needs of patients with all different forms of autoimmune disease. Traditionally, each disease and problem is studied and treated in separate areas of the Medical School, but this center breaks down the barriers to interaction and helps researchers understand the common threads that connect these illnesses.
The involvement of top immunology investigators at the University of Minnesota creates an opportunity to study a lot of different immunity-related problems. Devoting additional financial resources to a specific area of autoimmune disease will enable a keener focus and commitment to the lupus research within CADRe.
If you have previously donated to the endowment, or are interested in doing so, you can do so at https://give.umn.edu/giveto/meckstroth. Your donations will continue to support the important types of autoimmune research that will one day lead to a cure for lupus.
This partnership with CADRe brings new opportunities for Lupus Link Minnesota outside the realm of research as well. Talks are currently underway for coordinating several shared educational and awareness efforts for early 2019 and beyond. This opportunity to expand our network and share our message with a greater community, one that shares our goals, is an exciting next step in our development as an organization and progress towards the lupus cause. Stay tuned via social media and our e-news blasts for more details as plans for these events unfold.
Should you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to the board via our website. We hope to continue to provide updated information as our Board continues to meet and make decisions.
Sincerely – Barbara Schillo, Ph.D., Board Chair, Lupus Link Minnesota
**To view the press release regarding this announcement, click here.