About A Glimmer of Hope Foundation
A Glimmer of Hope, a Pittsburgh-based breast cancer foundation was started by Diana Napper in 1994 to honor the wishes of her best friend, Carol Jo Weiss Friedman, who lost her battle with the disease in 1990. Diana promised that she would pursue her dream as a jewelry designer and open a jewelry business that would fund a hospice in Carol Jo’s name. Diana created a pin using a Swarovski teardrop crystal, symbolizing the pain and emotion that she and her friend had endured, and completed the design by topping it with a pearl to symbolize the hope for a cure.
As the dream evolved, Diana realized that her mission was to create a venue to support breast cancer patients and their loved ones. With that as her goal, the Glimmer of Hope Foundation was born. It remains a grass roots effort as a 501c3 nonprofit organization with a staff of 50 volunteers committed to the fight against breast cancer through cancer research and programs, and most importantly, studies in premenopausal breast cancer, as breast cancer in younger women tends to be more aggressive.
Through fundraising events and the generous support of many people, businesses, sports celebrities and sports organizations, over 3 million dollars for breast cancer projects has been donated to Allegheny Health Network, Magee Women’s Research Institute, the Hillman Cancer Center, and Allegheny General Hospital. The Glimmer of Hope Foundation has received tremendous support because of the transparency of the programs it supports, the satisfaction people receive from seeing their contributions at work, and the knowledge that the fund raised stay in Pittsburgh. This year, over $500,000 will be distributed in Western Pennsylvania to breast cancer programs and equipment purchases.
In October 2014, a SenoClaire tomosynthesis machine was installed and began operating at the Wexford Health & Wellness Pavillion of the Allegheny Health Network thanks to a $171,000 donation made by the Glimmer of Hope Foundation. The machine was the first of its kind in the nation. Tomosynthesis has the ability to revolutionize mammography and breast cancer screening by providing much clearer, three-dimensional breast imaging using 40% less radiation to photograph nine layers of breast tissue. Doctors are better able to detect the earliest stages of cancer, differentiating benign tissue from dangerous abnormalities.
Glimmer of Hope is committed to providing the 3-D imaging tomosynthesis to every facility. The generosity of our donors is vitally important as we continue to find better ways of early detection and ultimately eradicate this disease.