Moms on a Mission: Will Moms of America be the Champions of Change?

October 20, 2009 (PRLEAP.COM) Lifestyle News
In light of President Obama's national call to volunteer, companies and organizations around the country are encouraging community service. The Entertainment Industry Foundation, for example, has launched its new "iParticipate" campaign to inspire a new era of volunteerism, and other notable companies such as Disney, with their "Give a Day, Get a Disney Day" program, are set out to make service a part of everyday life. But with a weak economy and everyone fending for themselves, will these valiant campaigns mobilize a nation? Will individuals be compelled to take action and work together in these tough times? Two moms, working together in the name of hope who have yet to meet in person, have said "yes".

Lisa Millar of Ashburn, VA and Melissa Culp of Tustin, CA are moms on a mission. With five children between them (ranging in age from 5 months to 11 years of age), and from opposites ends of the country, these two women have united around the cause of fighting brain cancer. In between being wife and mom, cooking, cleaning and shuttling children from place to place, both women spend much of their free time finding ways to help raise awareness and money for cancer and brain tumor research. Millar and Culp met through the Heroes of Hope Grey Ribbon Crusade (, established to unite individuals and non-profit organizations in the brain cancer community. Together they are spearheading the Grey Ribbon Crusade's Heroes of Hope Race for Research. This year's race, sponsored by the Style Network, is a 5K/10K and Kid's Fun Run taking place Sunday, November 8th at Dockweiler State Beach in Los Angeles, CA.

According to the National Cancer Institute and American Brain Tumor Association statistics, brain tumors are the leading cause of solid tumor death in children and the second leading cause of cancer death in men under the age of thirty-nine. Proceeds from the Race for Research will directly fund pediatric and adult brain tumor research being done by Dr. Linda Liau's team at UCLA's Department of Neurosurgery, and Dr. Jonathan Finlay's team Children's Hospital Los Angeles.

Millar founded the Brad Kaminsky Foundation for Brain Tumor Research, named for her brother who died from brain cancer before his 30th birthday. On what compels her to volunteer her time, Millar says, "It is quite challenging trying to work out details of the event with a three hour time difference while coordinating the schedules of two busy moms who also both hold part time paying jobs. However, the end result stays clearly imprinted in our minds as we know we are contributing to a much bigger picture that will ultimately help others and end a horrific disease. I also hope to instill the need for volunteering and providing service to others in my children." Culp is the President of Kaleidoscope Event Services and Chief Marketing Officer for the CEVAN Louie Foundation, founded in memory of the late Cheryl Fernandez Louie, who lost her 18-month battle with brain cancer last year after having been diagnosed with stage IV brain cancer at seven months pregnant. "I have always been taught that the most precious gift you can give someone is your time. Everyone has a busy schedule these days, so we have to carefully choose how we spend our time. I choose to spend my time with my husband and children, family and friends, and by making a difference. No matter how hard your day is, there is always someone, somewhere, having one worse. So if there is something that I can do to make someone's life better, it's just the right thing to do. If we can find a cure for one cancer, we are one step closer to finding a cure for all cancer, and that's what motivates me." Culp says. Millar and Culp prove that providing service to others and contributing to our nation's health is worthy, necessary, and also possible.

To volunteer to support the Heroes of Hope Race for Research, or for more information, call 1-866-48-CURE or contact Lisa Kaminsky Millar at To sign up to participate in the race, please go to and enter "Heroes of Hope" in the search field.