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Celebration of Champions Raises Money for Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute

Funds will help support patients, research and clinical trials

Lehigh Valley Health Network (LVHN) held its fourth annual Celebration of Champions on Saturday, May 20 at the Renaissance Hotel in Allentown. Benefiting Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute, the event honors cancer survivors, caregivers and community members.

Together, the evening’s 37 sponsors and nearly 250 guests raised almost $300,000 for the Cancer Institute. Proceeds will help advance cancer research and treatment, expand access to clinical trials and provide patient assistance funds. Brian A. Nester, DO, MBA, LVHN President and Chief Executive Officer, thanked everyone for their support, giving special recognition to Haldeman Lincoln as the title sponsor and Joe and Maureen Topper as the honorary chairs.

Suresh Nair, MD, Physician in Chief, Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute, spoke to the important role of philanthropy. “Your generosity enables us to recruit and retain the best and brightest colleagues, and bring the latest technology and treatment options to local patients.” Dr. Nair also shared highlights from several clinical trials at LVHN that are yielding amazing results, from pancreatic cancer to melanoma.

During the awards ceremony, Paul Haldeman was honored as this year’s Community Impact Champion.

Amy Eagle Thompson was recognized as the Survivor Champion.

Stella Polit, RN, OCN, was the 2023 Caregiver Champion. In the printed program, more cancer survivors were celebrated, sharing their stories of courage and hope.

Upon accepting his award, Community Impact Champion and Title Sponsor Paul Haldeman made an announcement that doubled the event’s philanthropic impact. He and his wife, Michele, were committing $250,000 to the melanoma cancer program at Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute. Their gift will support patient education and treatment and research around melanoma, while also increasing access to immunotherapy clinical trials and personalized vaccine trials.

Concluding the night’s program, Dr. Nair recognized all cancer survivors in the room and members of the Lehigh Valley Topper Cancer Institute clinical team.

Other top sponsors included:

Survivor Story Reception Sponsor


Champion Honoree Sponsors

B. Braun Medical Inc.

Bracy Construction Inc.


Lutron Electronics

North Star Construction Management Inc.

Peron Development

Innovation Sponsors

Allentown Radiation Oncology Associates


Mr. Steven and Mrs. Colette Kresge

Suresh and Terri Nair

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