Defiance College partners with Susan G. Komen to Race for the Cure

October 5, 2018

over 125 D C students, faculty, staff in purple shirts gathered for a photoDEFIANCE, Ohio - More than 125 Defiance College students, faculty, and staff took part in last week’s Komen Northwest Ohio Race for the Cure in Toledo to support the fight against breast cancer. A partnership began in 2017 between Susan G. Komen Northwest Ohio and the McMaster School for Advancing Humanity.

Gretchen Awad, community relations and development manager of Susan G. Komen Northwest Ohio, said, “The energy and commitment Defiance College brings to Susan G. Komen Northwest Ohio and our Toledo Race for the Cure is a game-changer. The students and leadership have proven to be wonderful volunteers, participants, and ambassadors for Komen and our vision of a world without breast cancer. The teams who arrive to help set up and manage pieces of Race Day are enthusiastic, fun, and, most especially, kind to the Survivors we celebrate and support.

“Race for the Cure is our biggest fundraiser of the year, and Defiance College recognizes the importance of what we are doing for the women and men we serve in Northwest Ohio. We are completely grateful. Not to mention what a privilege to celebrate the wonderful Rena Rager as this year’s ‘In Celebration Honoree’!”

The Defiance College team gave its time to support the cause in various ways on race weekend. The day before the race, students helped to set up the survivors’ tent. On race day, DC volunteers left campus at 5 a.m. to help with many aspects of the event, including staffing the survivors’ tent, assisting with children’s activities and games, Shop Komen, I Am Komen, and participating as runners. DC’s mascot, Buzz, encouraged racers during the family fun walk. Staff member Rena Rager was recognized as an “In Celebration Of” honoree.

DC President Dr. Richanne C. Mankey and Vice President for Academic Affairs and Academic Dean Dr. Agnes Caldwell participated in the survivors’ parade.

“I am so proud of our students and all of their efforts in support of this very worthwhile cause,” said President Mankey. “Susan G. Komen Northwest Ohio is an excellent and vital organization in our region, and we are happy to be able to partner with them in the important fight against breast cancer. We are also very proud of our own Rena Rager who was honored at this year’s event.”

Elyzabeth King, a Defiance College senior from Mechanicsburg, Ohio, said after the event, “Volunteering at the Toledo Race for the Cure is such an amazing experience. It is an awesome feeling to know you are helping a cause that impacts so many people in the world. Seeing people from all different backgrounds, each impacted by breast cancer in their own unique way, stand together to fight for the same cause is truly incredible, and I am honored to have been a part of that day.”

Komen Northwest Ohio has funded $12 million in local granting funds that directly impact underserved and uninsured women and men in a 24-county service area, which includes Defiance County. Additionally, they have contributed $3 million to breast cancer research at the national level, making Susan G. Komen the second largest nonprofit breast cancer research funder outside the U.S. government. More information may be found at:

Defiance College, chartered in 1850, is an independent, liberal arts-based institution in Northwest Ohio offering more than 40 undergraduate programs of study as well as graduate programs in education and business. Defiance College has received national recognition for its educational experience of service and engagement. The college website is