Foundation’s 2019 Swirl: Chicago Raises More Than $130,000

Chicago Philanthropic Community Supports LRF’s Mission to Eradicate Lymphoma and Serve Those Impacted by this Blood Cancer

From left: Charlie Madden, Key Account Manager, WSET Level 2, CSW, CMS-1; Kevin Fennessey, Executive Vice President of Commercial Operations; and Mike Evans, Director of Trade Relations, WSET Level 2, CSS, CMS-1 of Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits

CHICAGO – The Lymphoma Research Foundation (LRF) – the nation’s largest non-profit organization devoted exclusively to funding innovative lymphoma research and serving the lymphoma community through a comprehensive series of education programs, outreach initiatives and patient services – hosted its third Swirl: A Wine Tasting Event series in Chicago on May 30. Held at the exclusive Casino, the event raised more than $131,000 in support of the Lymphoma Research Foundation and its mission.

Representatives from Founding Sponsor Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits (SGWS) were on hand to present attendees with a selection of award-winning wines that featured Hot Wine Trends of 2019, and a special selection craft whisky. More than 300 guests attended to enjoy the evening’s unique wine and whiskey tasting, live jazz performances by the Rose Colella Jazz Quartet and silent auction.

Due to the success of Swirl: Chicago, the Foundation achieved $1.1 million raised through the Swirl: A Wine Tasting Event series. During the event, LRF celebrated this milestone and honored Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits with the coveted philanthropic 2019 Hope Award in recognition of their partnership and commitment to LRF’s mission.  LRF Board member, steadfast supporter of the Foundation’s Swirl series and Executive Vice President of Commercial Operations at Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits Kevin Fennessey accepted the award on behalf of SGWS.

“As the Founding Sponsor of the Swirl series, Southern Glazer’s is incredibly inspired by the series’ tremendous success and the impact our partnership has on the lymphoma community,” said Kevin Fennessey, Executive Vice President of Commercial Operations at Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. “We look forward to our continued partnership and expanding to more communities to further our support of LRF and all those impacted by a lymphoma diagnosis.”

“We are grateful for Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits support of the Swirl: A Wine Tasting Event series,” said Meghan Gutierrez, Chief Executive Officer at the Lymphoma Research Foundation. “Due to their extraordinary generosity and commitment to LRF’s mission, we were able to not only raise more than $1 million but also bring together philanthropic communities around the country to make an impact on lymphoma research and the lives of people affected by this blood cancer. We are honored to show our gratitude to SGWS by presenting them with the 2019 Hope Award.”

National Swirl series sponsors include Founding Sponsor Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits; Presenting Sponsor Genentech; Platinum Sponsor Kite Pharma, a Gilead Company; and Pharmacyclics; and Gold Sponsors AbbVie, and Verastem Oncology.  Swirl: Chicago Sponsors include Premier Sponsor The Chaplin Family Foundation.

Laura and Michael Werner (Chairs); Lynn and Michael Froy; Donna Landsman; Jill and Lee Pollock; and Diane and Paul Reilly served as the evening’s Host Committee.  Honorary Host Committee members included Leo I. Gordon, MD, FACP and Barbara Pro, MD, of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University; John P. Leonard, MD of New York-Presbyterian Hospital, Weill Cornell Medicine; and Sonali M. Smith, MD of the University of Chicago. In addition, Chair of LRF’s Scientific Advisory Board, Thomas M. Habermann, MD of the Mayo Clinic, Rochester, was in attendance, along with fellow LRF SAB member, Kanti Rai, MD of the Feinstein Institutes for Medical Research/Northwell Health.

For more information about Swirl: Chicago, visit

To view photos from Swirl: Chicago, click here.

Kinya P. Harte
Director of Communications and Marketing