Valley Society Leaders Help TGen Advance a Cure for Women’s Cancer
This year, the TGen Foundation’s annual Runway for Research, a fashion show/fundraiser scheduled for October 13, is slated to combine big fun and high fashion with a serious mission—supporting women’s cancer research at TGen.
TGen has partnered with Neiman Marcus and Scottsdale Fashion Square to raise critical funds, demystify science, and look fabulous. Runway for Research celebrates women’s cancer survivors and supports TGen’s pioneering DNA-based research, which uses the power of the human genome to provide hope and answers for cancer patients.
“We are trying to make the science more approachable,” explains Beth McRae, owner of High Society Resale Boutique and Runway for Research committee co-chair. “The complexity of the work they (TGen) do can make it a little inaccessible, but if we can reduce those barriers through an event like this, we can help many more women became aware of the options available to them.”
“I was excited to learn that they could take a sample of your DNA and try to match a drug that will help you beat cancer,” Justine Hurry, Runway for Research committee co-chair, elaborates, “I’ve had several family members that have had cancer. Several members have passed away. Learning that there are more humane treatments on the horizon was really, really exciting.”
Justine attended the last two years and was honored to join Beth as co-chair for the 2023 event. “It’s a fashion show. It’s at Neiman Marcus and Fashion Square — how could you go wrong?” she enthused.
Beyond Justine’s personal involvement as co-chair, this year brings a number of other firsts, starting with bringing back the signature pink as the color for the event.
“For years, pink has been associated with women’s health issues, specifically breast cancer, which has made something of a branding challenge for our event,” Beth, who also owns a PR agency, explains. “This year, we are reclaiming pink, which is significant from a branding perspective, but also a whole lot of fun!”
In addition to embracing the color and theme of the event, this year, Scottsdale Fashion Square has expanded the physical event into the mall area, which increases the potential number of attendees from 200 to 300 participants.
“We worked with Fashion Square and Neiman Marcus to make our runway longer and provide additional seating!” Justine expresses enthusiastically. “We set out to make it a bigger event this year and raise more awareness.”
Last year, the event raised a record-setting amount of over $231,000, and the committee is looking to outdo itself yet again.
“Our initial goal for this year is $300,000,” Justine says, “I am sure we will reach it.”
Beth is direct about their strategy for getting there. “This year, we have been very proactive about our outreach to the philanthropic community,” she notes. “We are recruiting some of the most powerful and influential women in the Valley.”
A TGen Family
Beth’s family has been supporters of TGen since its inception. In 2001-2002, early conversations in the Phoenix civic and business community centered around bringing the one-of-a-kind genomics research institute to Arizona. Her family was active in these foundational conversations. Alongside other community leaders, they funded a state-of-the-art lab, contributing to the launch of TGen at its very beginning.
“We are a TGen Family,” Beth says proudly, “We have deep roots with the institution going back to its earliest days.”
Today, Beth continues to honor these early investments through her philanthropic work. She is an active fundraiser and contributes personally. Beth’s sister, Stephanie McRae, serves as General Counsel for TGen. Betty McRae, their mother, continues to donate and provide support, most recently as the Presenting Sponsor of the 2023 Runway for Research fashion show.
“It is especially exciting to know that your money is having such a powerful impact,” Beth says of the funds she has helped raise for TGen. “We are helping advance the women’s cancer research program —developing precision medicine— which provides treatment tailored to a patient’s genetics.”
Cancer is the second leading cause of death in the US. Nearly 307,000 American women are diagnosed with breast or ovarian cancer annually. The most common cancers among women in the U.S. are cervical and ovarian, breast, colorectal, lung, skin, and uterine.
Routine exams and early detection continue to be the keys to survival. TGen continues to provide new methods of early detection to diagnose and intervene at its earlier stages when treatment can be most effective, as
well as targeted drug treatments with fewer side effects.
How to Get Involved
Runway for Research will be held on Friday, October 13, 2023 from 8:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. at the Luxury Wing, Scottsdale Fashion Square, 7014 E Camelback Rd, Scottsdale, AZ 85251.
Enjoy this season’s latest fashions while advancing the science to beat women’s cancers with TGen Foundation, Scottsdale Fashion Square, and Neiman Marcus.
For sponsorship or ticket information, please visit tgen.org/runway or contact Amiee Lay at 602-343-8502 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.