Select Equity Group Foundation Awards $71,370 Grant to Michael Mosier Defeat DIPG Foundation

Michael Mosier Defeat DIPG® Foundation is pleased to announce the exciting news that it has been awarded a $71,370 grant by Select Equity Group Foundation.  This is the second year of generous support from Select Equity Group Foundation, after an initial 2017 grant of $79,300 to support the Foundation’s DIPG research initiatives.

The 2018 Celebration Grant will play a critical role in supporting the Foundation’s growth through infrastructure expansion.  Since its creation in 2015, the Foundation has seen substantial increase in revenue, as well as geographic expansion of its operations through the addition of chapters across the country.  By strengthening its operations through staff hiring and further development of corporate partnerships, the Foundation will be even better situated to expand its impact on research funding to transform our understanding of the deadliest pediatric brain cancer, diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma (DIPG).

Select Equity Group Foundation’s mission is to make a positive impact by actively engaging all employees in identifying and supporting charitable organizations of excellence.  Select Equity Group Foundation uses a democratic process as the primary mechanism for its grantmaking, whereby its employees nominate charities for consideration.  Select Equity Group Foundation conducts a rigorous research process, including application by invitation and discussions with leadership before an award can be considered.  To date, Select Equity Group Foundation has awarded more than $20 million in grants to nonprofit organizations in a range of areas.

Tracy Thomas, Associate General Counsel at Select Equity Group, championed Michael Mosier Defeat DIPG Foundation during their annual celebration. Tracy also volunteered for the Foundation this year at our 2nd Annual Defeat DIPG Dream Big Gala. We greatly appreciate Tracy’s efforts to share with her colleagues the critical need for investment in finding a cure for this devastating disease.  We also thank Robert Wilson, Executive Director of Select Equity Group Foundation, as well as all of the Select Equity Group employees who supported the award of this grant.

Michael Mosier Defeat DIPG® Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that supports research initiatives designed to find a cure for DIPG brain tumors.  DIPG impacts hundreds of children each year in the U.S. alone, typically between the ages of 4 – 11 years old. These kids face a median survival of 9 months from diagnosis and overall survival of less than 1%.

The Defeat DIPG Foundation Board of Directors makes funding decisions, after consideration of recommendations from its Scientific Advisory Council (SAC).  The SAC consists of preeminent doctors in the field of brain cancer and is led by Chair Darell D. Bigner, M.D., Ph.D., Director of The Preston Robert Tisch Brain Tumor Center at Duke University.  Defeat DIPG Foundation has experienced significant growth since its creation in 2015, with the addition of five Defeat DIPG® Network chapters across the United States in Illinois (Anthony’s Avengers Defeat DIPG® Foundation), Pennsylvania (Addison Grace Defeat DIPG® Foundation), Texas (Connor Man Defeat DIPG® Foundation), and two in Washington (Avery Huffman Defeat DIPG® Foundation and Vivian Rose Weaver Defeat DIPG® Foundation).

There has been a significant increase in research focused on DIPG, including notable advancements of knowledge about the biology of the disease just in the past five years.  With increased access to tumor tissue, more sophisticated technology, and greater information sharing between institutions, there is hope that children facing DIPG will soon have more options and hope for extended survival.

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2nd Annual Defeat DIPG Dream Big Gala Raises Over $435,000

The 2nd Annual Defeat DIPG Dream Big Gala, presented by DARCARS Automotive Group, took place on Saturday, November 3, 2018, at the Hyatt Regency Bethesda.  Thanks to our sponsors, attendees and other supporters, we are thrilled to report that we raised over $435,000. We are Dreaming Big for a cure for DIPG brain cancer, and these funds will help us make that dream a reality.

We looked out on a room of 450 people at the gala, and we felt a powerful sense of hope and determination.  With so many banding together to take on this horrible disease, we know that progress will be made.

We thank every DIPG family who allowed us to honor their child and especially those who attended, even knowing how difficult it can be on your already broken hearts. Three amazing DIPG families stood on stage and shared their stories with our guests, and it was their willingness to open their hearts that made the whole night.  We give our heartfelt thanks to Lauren Gibson, Tammi & Jason Carr, and Rich & Nancy Engler.  Dara, Chad, and Luke are an inspiration to us all.

Mitch Albom was unable to join us in person, but he took the time to send a powerful video about the beautiful Chika Jeune who fought DIPG so bravely.  The love he and his wife had for Chika shined through, and we were honored to have her story as part of the event.

We thank every person who spent the night at the gala, sponsored DIPG family tickets, bought auction items, and otherwise donated to our mission.

We thank our Gala Host Committee that poured endless hours into making this event a success:  Jacqueline Chan, Jenny Ellickson, Amy Elliott, Marguerite Laurent, Lori McGill, Amanda Posner, Amy Rogstad, and Jennifer Saulino.

We thank our Event Emcee Tommy McFly ( and our generous sponsors:

  • PLATINUM “HOPE” SPONSORS:  PhRMA, [D3] District Design + Development, and NextGen LED
  • BAR “STARGAZER” SPONSOR:  Total Wine & More
  • GOLD “IMAGINE” SPONSORS:  Bayou Bakery, Good Stuff Eatery, and Hyatt Regency Bethesda
  • TABLE SPONSORS:  Ceros Financial Services, Inc., Children’s National Medical Center, Debevoise & Plimpton, Ernst & Young, FTI, Jack Silverman, DDS, K&L Gates, Next Level Rentals & Management, and Friends from Covington & Burling LLP.
  • IN-KIND SPONSORS:  CONTEND; Electra Entertainment; Sarah Marcella Creative; Barry Artistic Media Design; and BaseCamp DC
  • SUPPORTERS: Cynthia Schnedar & Mark Polston; Lewis Asset Management; Sports and Orthopaedic Therapy Services; Central Maryland Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, P.A.; Dominos; Scott Bilbrey; and Pepco

The Live Auction was run by the talented auctioneer Ernie Rogers and his team, who entertained the crowd and helped us raise some serious funds for DIPG research!  Thank you to all who donated incredible Live Auction packages, including Lauren Phillips & Family; Maggie O’Neill; Chef Michael Friedman of The Red Hen and All-Purpose DC; Chef Erik Bruner-Yang; Total Wine & More; Jackson Family Wines, and Hyatt Hotels.

We thank Michael for being our light and inspiration, along with each and every child who has confronted this disease.  Yes, we Dream Big.  But these kids deserve that and so much more.  Together, we will Defeat DIPG.


Save the Date:  the 3rd Annual Defeat DIPG Dream Big Gala will be on Saturday, October 26, 2019, at the North Bethesda Marriott.