Lynn Lippert and her wife, Sal Jepson, have a passion for life and bonded over their shared love of traveling and the outdoors. After Lynn received her second breast cancer diagnosis, she and Sal decided to meet the challenge by joining Fred Hutch’s annual Climb to Fight Cancer. Lynn surprised herself with her initial success, raising $17,000 for lifesaving research at the Hutch. “Unfortunately, I have a compelling story to support,” she quips.
Following Lynn’s third cancer diagnosis and the loss of her brother to prostate cancer in 2011, Lynn and Sal decided to establish an endowment at Fred Hutch. Reflecting on their motivation, Sal says, “Endowment goes on forever. It is really important to us that our gifts and fundraising are not one-time things, that it’s more than us.”
Lynn and Sal started their endowment with an initial gift to Fred Hutch and have increased its size through additional fundraising using a Fred Hutch personal fundraising web page, gifts from their IRAs and a bequest in their estate plan. Lynn and Sal say that their success proves that “even people of modest backgrounds can make a difference.” The endowment supports pilot projects in breast cancer research and benefits researchers who have brilliant ideas but can’t yet get National Institutes of Health funding. At this stage of research, only private dollars can help, and “a little bit can go a long way,” Sal says.
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Since her first climb in 2005, Lynn has made 20 additional climbs and has raised an amazing $340,000. While continuing to receive chemotherapy for her fourth cancer diagnosis, Lynn recently summited Mount St. Helens and plans another climb to celebrate her 75th birthday in August — all to raise additional funds and further their commitment to curing cancer.
To learn more about endowment gifts, visit fredhutch.org/endowment.
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