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August 14, 2014
BOOZ ALLEN LEADERS "GET WET" TO AN EFFORT TO STRIKEOUT ALS
Booz Allen Hamilton leadership, serving on the national and local boards for the ALS Association, accepted the Ice Bucket Challenge at McLean Headquarters on Aug. 13. Executive Vice President Bill Thoet, Senior Vice President Rob Silverman and Vice Presidents Paul Ingholt and Craig Starnes made donations on behalf of Booz Allen colleagues that have battled ALS, and people battling the disease like Pete Frates who are driving awareness.
After accepting the challenge, they encouraged Booz Allen staff to #StrikeOutALS through donations to the National ALS Association or the local DC/MD/VA Chapter. Each of the leaders challenged Booz Allen employees to accept the #IceBucketChallenge and share on Twitter, Facebook, Instragram, LinkedIn, YouTube, and Pinterest.
BOOZ ALLEN & THE ALS ASSOCIATION
At Booz Allen, we’ve been supporting the ALS Association since 1999, when one of our employees was diagnosed with Lou Gehrig ’s disease. This diagnosis, along with one coworker’s pledge to raise awareness, has led to a commitment with the ALS Association that we’ve continued for the past fifteen years.
Today, Executive Vice President Bill Thoet serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the National ALS Association. Senior Vice President Rob Silverman and Vice Presidents Paul Ingholt and Craig Starnes are active in the DC/MD/VA ALS Association leadership. Booz Allen employees continue to work and volunteer their time to improve the quality of life of people battling ALS. Since 2002, the firm has raised more than $638,00 for the ALS Association through fundraising and events such as the such as the annual ProAM golf outing fundraiser planned and hosted by Booz Allen employees. In addition, Booz Allen employees spend countless hours volunteering through board memberships and ALS fundraising events.
WHAT IS ALS?
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or "Lou Gehrig's Disease," is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord, eventually leading to total paralysis and death. There is no treatment for ALS, and no cure – 100% of people diagnosed with ALS will die from it. The average life span after diagnosis is 2-5 years, with one FDA approved drug, riluzole, that modestly slows the progression of ALS.
The cost of caring for an ALS patient is incredibly high, averaging $200,000 a year. Because patients lose the ability to move, talk, eat and even breathe on their own, advancing technology is critical. While the disease is degenerative, ALS does not affect mental acuity or awareness – making the disease all the crueler. Recent developments, such as eye-tracking technology, offer the promise of more independence and freedom for patients.
Every year, approximately 5,600 people are diagnosed with ALS, and another 5,000 will die from it. At any given time, there are about 30,000 people living with ALS in the United States. ALS knows no limits – it can affect anyone, no matter age, race, sex or socioeconomic background. While the exact cause of ALS is still unknown, research has proven that veterans and those who serve in the military are twice as likely to develop ALS. The Department of Veterans Affairs has recognized ALS as a service-connected disease, and vets are eligible for care and benefits.