August 13, 2008

Genetics Policy Institute Announces 2008 “Stem Cell Action” Honorees to Be Recognized at the World Stem Cell Summit, Madison

The Genetics Policy Institute (GPI) will hold its annual Stem Cell Action Awards dinner on Monday, September 22, at Alliant Energy Center as part of the 2008 World Stem Cell Summit in Madison, Wisconsin. The 2008 awards dinner is underwritten by Promega Corporation.

Through the Stem Cell Action Awards, the Genetics Policy Institute recognizes organizations and individuals who have most positively impacted the stem cell community.

The 2008 honorees include:

Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle (National Leadership Award). Governor Doyle is a stalwart and courageous supporter of stem cell research and a proponent of Wisconsin's strategic goal to invest $750 million in biotechnology and stem cell research. Outspoken and eloquent, Governor Doyle is a leading spokesperson for the advancement of potentially lifesaving discovery.

Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation (National Advocacy). Carrying on the legacies of its founders, Christopher and Dana Reeve, the Foundation continues to be a significant leader in the world effort in support for stem cell research. Through its effective education, outreach, advocacy and funding support, the Foundation brings us closer to finding a cure to paralysis through the study of stem cells.

National Association of Biology Teachers (Education). For the last 70 years, this non-profit association has served over 9,000 teachers, upholding scientific integrity and fighting for the right to teach accurate and current science without penalty from political or religious influence on content. NABT's dedication to providing outstanding biology resources has lead to it's support of Stem Cell Resources (, one of the world's leading public education web sites for stem cell research.

Brooke Ellison (Inspiration). Brooke's heroic struggle and message of hope after a devastating injury left her paralyzed has inspired millions, as chronicled through her book, a movie and in an upcoming documentary to be premiered in September. She has founded The Brooke Ellison Project ( dedicated to the advancement of stem cell research.

Ben Kaplan (Grassroots Advocacy). Ben came onto the stem cell scene in a compelling promotional piece in support for California's Prop 71. Ben was born with cerebral palsy, a fate not shared by his twin brother. He is a grassroots leader of the first rank and his ongoing creation "Bens Stem Cell News" ( is where many advocates obtain the very latest online progress report from the front lines of science, regulation and politics.

"The Genetics Policy Institute's Stem Cell Action Awards, presented at the World Stem Cell Summit, honor the people and groups who have made the greatest impact in advancing the cause of stem cell research," said Bernard Siegel, executive director of the Genetics Policy Institute. "GPI is very proud that we can honor these heroes for their effective actions that are lifting awareness and bringing us closer to delivering on the promise of stem cell research."

Past honorees include Michael J. Fox, Bob Klein, Don Reed, Danny Heumann, Dr. Ralph Dittman, Parkinson's Action Network, Hadassah, Coalition for Advancement of Medical Research, Texans for Advancement of Medical Research, Student Society for Stem Cell Research and Missouri Coalition for Lifesaving Cures.

Genetics Policy Institute, the University of Wisconsin Stem Cell & Regenerative Medicine Center and WiCell Research Institute are hosting the summit. This event has garnered to date more than 120 sponsors, supporting organizations and media partners. It is the flagship networking conference bringing together the world stem cell community of researchers, clinicians, policy-makers, foundation representatives, investors, philanthropists, bioethicists, industry leaders from biotechnology and pharma, legal experts, academicians, students, patients and advocates. For information on how to register for the World Stem Cell Summit and for sponsorship information, visit

The Genetics Policy Institute is a leading public interest organization promoting stem cell research. It serves as a unifying voice for the stem cell community and is the principal catalyst for the Pro-Cures Movement and Stem Cell Action Coalition. For more information about GPI, visit