Foundation Fighting Blindness Gathers to Celebrate Success of $110M + Campaign

September 09, 2016

COLUMBIA, MD (September 9, 2016) – The Foundation Fighting Blindness gathered Thursday night at the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) in New York City to celebrate the success of the Gordon and Llura Gund Family Challenge, which raised more than $111 million in new funding for retinal disease research.

In June 2014, Foundation Co-Founder Gordon Gund and his wife, Llura, launched the gift matching challenge with a goal of raising $100 million to accelerate research for retinal degenerative diseases. Throughout the two-year challenge, the Gunds provided unlimited, dollar-for-dollar matches for all new or increased gifts to the Foundation of at least $25,000.

“My wife Lulie and I are thrilled to celebrate the Challenge’s success and we express our sincerest gratitude to the 260 donors who made our dream possible,” said Foundation Fighting Blindness Co-Founder and Chairman Emeritus Gordon Gund. “Their generous donations will continue to bring promising treatments to the marketplace and bring us even closer to finding a cure for retinal diseases.”

During the event, Foundation Fighting Blindness donors mingled in The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden and enjoyed a special performance by folk singer Judy Collins, while speakers – including Gordon Gund – announced plans to use funding raised by the Challenge to support promising research.

“This new funding makes Lulie and me even more confident that blindness caused by inherited retinal diseases will be a thing of the past within the next two decades,” said Gund.

Funding raised by the Challenge will help support pre-clinical research and clinical trials that will continue to advance sight-preserving and restoring treatments. All donations will be directly allocated to cross-cutting research in areas such as gene, stem cell or drug therapies, allowing the Foundation to support the most promising research.