At Blue Hope Bash, Colon Cancer Alliance Teases Plans, Celebrates Cancer-Free with a Car

Michael Sapienza, CEO of CCA, at the Blue Hope Bash 2021

Guests at the 11th annual Blue Hope Bash of the Colorectal Cancer Alliance got a behind-the-scenes look at how the work gets done. This was true both for the few in-person attendees who experienced the night with fellow friends and supporters in person from The Showroom on 14th Street as well as those who watched from their homes because Blue Hope Bash: One Nation Forward was all about the steps the Alliance is taking to change the stigma of colon cancer.

And the plans are big.

Heather Skinner, cancer survivor Karen Herson, and Katia Albanese at the 2021 Blue Hope bash

From CEO Michael Sapienza’s explanation of the Alliance’s recent focus on health equity, which includes a 2.4 million investment to address health disparities in colorectal cancer, to teasing an upcoming partnership announcement with an “A-list celebrity to help us create a new initiative to get the word out that colon cancer is the preventable cancer,” CCA hasn’t pressed pause on any of its efforts to assist those with colon cancer to live longer with a higher quality of life by being armed with specific knowledge about their form of cancer.

Photo Contest Finalists

Additioanlly, the Alliance announced that it was moving forward with a 2022 launch of a one-of-a-kind mobile platform that will provide peer support groups, use artificial intelligence to match individual users with personalized resources “including the right treatment and survivorship information for them,” according to CCA’s Andrea Goodman, and share future support services “like a live navigator and clinical trial matching.”

For this work, close to $1 million was raised during the Bash’s hour broadcast.

Regan Huneycutt, Michael Sapienza, and Rich Confalone at the 2021 Blue Hope Bash

Produced onsight with a small in-person audience and offered to others via livestream in their homes, the dual nature of the Bash didn’t dampen the experience, allowing supporters across the country the opportunity to make a direct impact on the lives of colorectal cancer patients, survivors, and caregivers.

Other touching moments of the night included memorials for loved ones lost recently to colorectal cancer and Timphony Blakney-Brown winning the photo contest decided via online voting. The popular Rolex watch and Porsche vehicle raffles were also highlights of the evening, especially with emcee Craigh Melvin adding mischief – and a close call mistake!

The set-up for in-person guests at the 2021 Blue Hope Bash

In a split-second decision to call the winner, Melvin actually misdialed at first, but then corrected and left a witty voicemail for the actual winner — who called back later in the broadcast.

Thomas Snider of California, who had been living with Stage 3 colorectal cancer, but was in the past month pronounced cancer-free, told CCA Gala guests by phone, “It’s a tough battle. And I do everything I can to get [CCA] out to all of the people and explain to them. This is amazing. Thank you all.”

“You enjoy that Porche,” Melvin told him. “You earned every mile.”

To learn more about the work of the Colorectal Cancer Alliance see here.