On Saturday, March 28, The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) will host its 2015 Leukemia Ball, presented by PhRMA. This annual black-tie event starts at 6:30 p.m. and will be held at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, in Washington, D.C.
The evening will include entertainment from Michael Cavanaugh and Howie Mandel, along with a reception, silent auction, dinner, Mercedes-Benz raffle and dancing. Since 1988, the Leukemia Ball has raised nearly $50 million for the fight against leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin’s disease and myeloma. The silent auction at the 2014 Leukemia Ball raised approximately $307,000.
A highlight of the evening will be the presentation of the Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award to James Palmer, retiring Corporate Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Northrop Grumman Corporation. Palmer is being honored for his role in advancing corporate citizenship throughout Northrop Grumman and his support of the mission of LLS.
WashingtonExec recently spoke with Sandra Evers-Manly, Vice President of Global Corporate Responsibility and President of the Northrop Grumman Foundation, about what this award means to her company.
WashingtonExec: At this year’s Leukemia Ball, Northrop Grumman executive James Palmer will be honored with the Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award. Will you tell us about Jim and the role he has played in advancing corporate citizenship?
Sandra Evers-Manly: As you know Jim is our retiring Corporate Vice President and Chief Financial Officer. In this function, he also served on our Corporate Charitable Contributions Committee. He helped to oversee our community involvement across the globe. Under Jim’s leadership, the company provided significant annual funding to the Northrop Grumman Foundation, helping to support STEM education, military families, veterans, local communities and becoming involved with organizations such as the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. He played an incredible role in helping to assess if we had the right contributions budget and giving priorities in place to impact the communities where we have our facilities and where our employees work and live.
WashingtonExec: Northrop Grumman has been a long-time partner with LLS and the Leukemia Ball. Why is the organization involved with LLS and how has Jim supported this important partnership?
Sandra Evers-Manly: I believe that LLS is one of those organizations whose work is life-saving. It helps so many families as they go through the fight against blood cancers.
The Leukemia Ball is an amazing experience – it is heart-wrenching and impactful. You walk away knowing that you have an organization out there that not only cares, but is really making a great impact.
Our employees have been involved in a number of initiatives with LLS. We have supported LLS’s Light the Night Walk since 2010. We’ve had a member of our leadership team serve on the Leukemia Ball Executive Committee for over 15 years along with many other LLS activities including, of course, Jim’s participation in various marathons to raise money for the cause.
We’re involved because this organization helps people in so many ways: life-saving research, patient programs, and ensuring access to treatments and care. The mission of LLS and the importance of the Ball make us proud to be associated with such a wonderful organization. We are also especially proud of the support and recognition they have given to military medical professionals.
WashingtonExec: The Ball will be a big night for Jim and all of you who have worked so closely with him in supporting LLS. What does the award mean to Jim and the company as a whole?
Sandra Evers-Manly: First of all, I think Jim is very humbled by the award and the recognition. One of the things that he has said to me is that this is not really about Jim, this is about Northrop Grumman, it is about our employees who give. Some give on an individual basis, some give as teams, so I see this recognition really being about the team and the company.
But we are so proud of Jim. I serve as president of the company’s Foundation, so I see all of our charitable contributions. Jim has been like this gentle giant who helps to push us along and make sure that we are doing great things in the community. For me to see this kind of recognition being given to Jim, especially as he is beginning to prepare to retire, is quite fitting.
The award is called the ‘Distinguished Lifetime Achievement Award’ – I think he is a distinguished gentleman who has truly given of himself.
He has done it behind the scenes in a quiet way. Very few people at the company know that Jim has participated in marathons and in raising money in various cities around the country for LLS.
At Northrop Grumman, we are proud and honored to be involved with this organization.