The Bold for Blue Award Ceremony kicks off the Summit each year with a chance to meet, mingle, catch up, and engage with one another as a #ZEROStrong community. Together we acknowledge and celebrate our boldest fundraisers and those who have the greatest impact on our mission to end prostate cancer.
At the 2021 Virtual Summit, ZERO celebrated more than 25 Bold for Blue Award winners during the awards ceremony, plus Legacy Award Winners. We’re excited for the next year where we’ll be able to celebrate in person at the Summit, and virtual attendees will also be able to watch along over social media.
Watch a replay of the 2021 Bold for Blue ceremony, and learn about each of the award recipients below. You can also meet previous year’s nominees by reading their biographies in the 2020 awards program and see a full photo gallery from the 2021 event on ZERO’s Facebook page.
Three honorees also took home Legacy Awards on Sunday evening. Legacy Awards recognize those who have shown passionate commitment and dedication over many decades of service to the prostate cancer community. This year’s awardees were the “Daughter 4 Dads” of Napa Valley: Sarah Dunn, Amy Donaldson, and Julie Tofte.
After losing their grandfather to the disease, watching their father’s long battle with prostate cancer, and then experiencing their uncle’s recent diagnosis, they knew it was critical to raising awareness in their local community. Since 2014, the sisters have participated in ZERO’s fundraising campaigns and events, including their very own Run/Walk, which has raised thousands of dollars for patients and families since its inaugural year.
The newest Impact Award winners were honored for their indomitable spirit in the fight against prostate cancer and their neverending passion for helping others. Meet the recent winners:
Stephanie Mueller of Ohio was honored for her indomitable efforts to make ZERO’s Virtual Run/Walk series a smashing success. Stephanie participated in 41 ZERO 5Ks, meaning she ran 127.1 miles in 78 days! Decked out in blue each mile, Stephanie pounded the pavement in honor of her father, a prostate cancer survivor, to raise awareness and funds for prostate cancer patients.
Freddie Muse Jr. of California is a prostate cancer survivor and founder of The Men’s Cancer Network. Through his work, Freddie helps provide prostate cancer resources and support for Black men in the greater Los Angeles area.
Meghan Nikituk of Virginia live-streamed creative videos on her social media channels to raise awareness during ZERO’s Run/Walk season, and throughout ZERO’s November Grow & Give campaign. These videos inspired others to participate and donate and showcased informative and educational prostate cancer facts.
Many amazing individuals were nominated for the recent Impact Awards. With only three awards able to be handed out, it was so tough to choose from this group of inspired advocates and fighters. Please join ZERO in congratulating all the nominees for the recent Impact Awards.
Tammy and Jeff Holbert of Texas were bummed when they learned that the 2020 Run/Walk series would have to go virtual due to COVID-19. But they decided to not let the new format stop them, and instead were inspired to make the most of it. Tammy and Jeff participated in many Virtual Run/Walks in honor of other members of the ZERO family nationwide, stepping it up each weekend to represent patients, survivors, and caregivers from around the country. Each weekend they proudly donned their blue while stepping up for prostate cancer, fundraised for families in need, and raised their voices on social media and in their community to help spread prostate cancer awareness and education. Way to go, Holberts!
Athena Casamento of New York stands for everything that ZERO encompasses, her passion to end prostate cancer is undeniable! Athena has repeatedly shown her commitment to ZERO in everything that she does. She is effective and inspiring, encouraging her community to join ZERO’s mission. She did not let COVID stop her from helping to put an end to prostate cancer. Athena is a Caregiver Mentor for ZERO, a Champion leader, and a trendsetter when it comes to finding creative ways to raise money to fuel ZERO’s programs, such as hosting online cooking classes that are prostate healthy and raise money for patients! She is a Champion that helps fuel the passion within everyone around her. She also took her virtual Run/Walk fundraising online for Team Hoboken Strong!
Dale Golgart of Texas (right) is a military Veteran and has stage IV prostate cancer. He has been in and out of the hospital during this difficult year he has always remained positive and wants to continue to help others. He completed his radiation treatment on November 10, and is the face of ZERO’s end-of-year giving campaign, sharing his story with men and families in need.
Tracy Morgan of Illinois (left) is a Veteran, survivor, and awesome ZERO Champion and Run/Walk Fundraiser. What stands out about Tracy is that he’s EVERYWHERE supporting ZERO! On social media, he’s the first to comment on anything, as well as share or like it to raise awareness and engagement. He’s willing to share his disease story for ZERO’s use at any time and offer his own attention to anyone who needs to talk. He participated in six virtual Run/Walks this year and donated to every campaign ZERO had. He is giving, generous, and awesome!
Mical Roy of Texas was diagnosed at the young age of 37. He has made it his mission to share his story and educate men and remind them that this isn’t an “old man’s” disease. In early 2020, Mical and his wife Jermaine went to the Summit for the first time and advocated for ZERO. Mical is a MENtor to other prostate cancer patients. Anytime he is asked to do a video, write a blog post, or participate in something that helps others, he always says yes. He is always willing to share his story so he can help others like himself.
Don Williamson of Georgia is a prostate cancer survivor who was diagnosed shortly after losing his father to prostate cancer. He is also a Veteran and an African-American man who is willing to share his story to open up a discussion about the importance of prostate cancer education and screenings, particularly among Vets and the African-American communities. In 2020 Don furthered the mission to end prostate cancer in many ways. He participated in the Summit and met with Georgia representatives to secure PCRP funding. Then, as a committee member for the Tee-Off to End prostate cancer, he personally called more than 100 patients and caregivers in Georgia to invite them to the Tee-Off and helped to raise nearly $55,000 to fuel ZERO’s programs by securing sponsor support from Cancer Treatment Centers of America. He’s also a ready and willing spokesperson for ZERO in media opportunities and is one of our most active Champions, who also serves as a Summit Ambassador.
Tami Musumeci-Szabo of New Jersey is a professional Health Psychologist who helped guide me through the decision-making process after my diagnosis, and during my recuperation after surgery. Tami is also a certified Yoga4Cancer instructor who volunteered to conduct a post-race yoga session at the 2019 South Jersey ZERO Run/Walk and has hosted some virtual yoga fundraisers for ZERO. She also gave a presentation to our local prostate cancer support on the benefits of yoga for cancer patients and survivors that convinced several men to start attending her weekly Yoga 4 Cancer sessions which she provided through the Jefferson Health System. When COVID-19 forced Jefferson to stop the sessions, Tami decided to continue offering them FOR FREE via Zoom from her home to any cancer patient/ survivor. Because of the great interest, she increased the offerings to twice weekly during the summer months. She kicked off the 2020 Philadelphia / Syracuse Virtual Event with a Yoga session and also conducted an online Community Celebration Yoga Fundraiser this year which raised about $400 for ZERO. She also co-hosted the 2020 South Jersey / Virginia Beach ZERO Virtual Run/Walk Celebration and sent many photos and videos.
Jessica Tolman of Utah was a leader on the Salt Lake City race committee and was one of the driving forces behind a successful Run/Walk in the SLC area back in June. She didn’t miss a beat when we were forced to pivot to a virtual event and was not only effective on the Race Committee, but stepped up as the Bold for Blue speaker for the event, fundraised, and brought out her whole family. She also led the media committee for the event. Jessica is a ZERO Champion and has been an advocate and supporter of ZERO for at least a few years – she does it all in honor of her godfather David Dodd who is a prostate cancer survivor and leader in their community. She speaks out to raise awareness, raises funds, and shows up with her time and energy to make sure the event is a success. She is always sharing photos and videos with others to raise awareness.
Beth Allen and Craig Blouin of Utah were long-time supporters of the Salt Lake City Run/Walk. Craig Blouin was a survivor and dedicated member of the Salt Lake City ZERO Run/Walk committee until his passing just days before the 2018 race. He was a passionate advocate and member of the Utah Prostate Support Group who always came out in support of the event. In 2018 and 2019, Craig’s family and widow, Beth, found it too difficult to be involved in the event. This year, Beth reached out to members of the Race Committee to let them know she was ready to restart a team and fundraise on Craig’s behalf. His family showed up in his memory and were the second place fundraising team in the event. The stories that Craig’s family and the Race Committee shared about him and his impact on the event have really stuck with me and I was incredibly impressed with their strength and effort this year.
Suzanne Schlernitzauer of Florida is a caregiver that lost her brother to prostate cancer. Every day, she takes action to further ZERO’s mission to end prostate cancer and fulfill her promise to her brother to do everything she can do to end the disease. Susie deserves the Impact Award for many reasons, including being an active advocate at the Summit, providing support to staff, serving as a Summit Ambassador, and co-facilitating Summit sessions. She also meets with her local representatives throughout the year advocating on behalf of ZERO. Additionally, Susie is consistently a top fundraiser for the Miami Run/Walk and also participated in the Virtual Tee-Off committee right after the race. Collectively I’d estimate she raised more than $30,000 for ZERO in 2020. Susie also gives to ZERO regularly. She calls me up on the last day of match campaigns to track if we’ve reached the goal or not – and if we haven’t she offers to donate however much it takes to reach the match goal. She’s donated to the Run/Walk, PCAM appeal, Grow & Give, and sponsored the Tee-Off. That’s not all — Susie also serves on the Patient and Caregiver Advisory Board, serving as a voice for caregivers. Susie is a crucial player in making ZERO’s patient support programs as strong as possible.
Dr. Peter Zeman of North Carolina was the urologist that diagnosed my prostate cancer in 2010. He has guided me along in the journey through surgery, radiation, and various medication regimens. He connected me with the finest surgeons, radiologists, and oncologists in the area. He supported me through a recurrence in the bones, which was taken care of before it could get a real hold. He guided me to the Provenge treatment, and now onto Zytiga and Eligaard. Through his efforts, my PSA, after nearly a decade of cancer, is near zero. He helped me find ways to handle the impact of multiple side effects. I believe I owe my life to him, and not just my life, but the ability to lead a good quality of life. His clinic has been a supporter of ZERO since our first Run For A Life event last year, and through what turned into a virtual celebration this year. Without his support and the sponsorship of his urology practice, we may not have been able to get Run For A Life successfully off the ground.
Linda and Ray Hoetger of Ohio have dedicated their lives to raising awareness for prostate cancer through a variety of efforts. First, Linda created Petey, a walnut with eyes/arms/legs, who has affectionately become a “mascot” for prostate cancer. She uses Petey to start conversations; make memorable interactions with others; and help to bring a “face” to prostate cancer. Petey is well-known on Capitol Hill, as well as throughout the country, as Linda and Ray “gift” Petey to friends/followers/business owners/legislators, and really anyone willing to listen and help spread the word. Also, Linda has dedicated many hours to collecting proclamations from mayors, commissioners, and other elected officials around Ohio and beyond! She has done this for many years and has helped raise awareness among legislators and communities across Ohio. Ray and Linda often travel hours to accept the proclamations in person, or they find other ZERO advocates around Ohio who are willing to assist. Linda has made amazing connections with elected officials who have become advocates in their communities as well. She’s even helped to get buildings “turned blue” for Prostate Cancer Awareness Month! AND… Ohio will be THE FIRST STATE to have a ZERO – The End of Prostate Cancer license plate! Linda has spent tireless hours trying to collect the necessary signatures now that the bill has passed and has been signed by the governor. Through the amazing relationships that she has built, Linda was able to achieve this goal!
See photos from past Bold for Blue Awards ceremonies on Facebook (2019) and (2020), and read about past winners (2019) and (2020) on the ZERO blog. You can also view ZERO’s 2020 Bold for Blue Awards Program to learn even more about recent winners.
The Bold for Blue Awards are sponsored by: