Great Strides 2008
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Message from the President

Robert J. Beall, Ph.D.
President and Chief Executive Officer,
Cystic Fibrosis Foundation

Dear Friends,

With fall upon us and the new year fast approaching, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation is working harder than ever to support volunteer fund-raising efforts, keep our drug pipeline well-stocked and further the quality of care for CF patients—children and a rising number of adults—across the country.

Our ongoing progress and our innovative approach to drug development were highlighted in a September issue of Forbes. In it, 26-year-old Emily Schaller, a young woman with CF, said, “The CF Foundation is the reason I’m alive.”

What a great message of hope and optimism! And it pretty much sums up our story: People with CF today are leading longer, healthier lives because of the great strides the Foundation has made in treating and controlling cystic fibrosis.

But we’re far from finished. By now, you have heard about the Foundation’s recent scientific breakthrough in addressing the basic defect in CF. Since we received the results of VX-770 Phase 2 clinical trials last spring, we have been expanding our efforts to address the basic defect, as well as to alleviate symptoms for those living with CF. In this issue of Commitment, you will learn how our other collaborations with pharmaceutical and biotech companies are yielding promising results. And you’ll hear from CF patients who are participating in ongoing clinical trials and making a vital contribution to the development of effective new treatments.

We have just completed another amazing year of GREAT STRIDES, our number one national fund-raising program. I can’t tell you how excited I get each year as the official “walk” weekend approaches and people of all ages put on their t-shirts and lace up their walking shoes for the campaign. Thanks to the efforts of family teams, and of our growing group of corporate friends, we had record-breaking turnouts and raised more money than ever before. 

With all that you do, you—our dedicated volunteers, donors and friends across the country—are helping to make Emily’s claim possible. As you read this issue of Commitment, celebrate with us the enormous progress we are making in our quest for a cure.


Robert J. Beall, Ph.D.