Founder of David’s Dream & Believe Cancer Foundation Honored with Jefferson Award
Manahawkin, NJ. Friday, June 9, 2014 – David Caldarella, founder of David’s Dream & Believe Cancer Foundation, has been honored with a 2014 New Jersey State Governor’s Jefferson Awards in the category of Founders/Innovators. The Founders/Innovators category recognizes individuals whose vision and dedication result in the establishment of a new organization to meet unmet needs or new improved means of meeting those needs. Recipients of the New Jersey State Governor’s Jefferson Awards achieve measurable community impact, perform outstanding acts of public service without the expectation of recognition, serve as inspiration for others, personify dedication to a unique vision, and demonstrate tenacity of heroic proportion. Melanie Magaziner and Corinne Gray Ruff facilitated his nomination for this prestigious award, and David was selected from a pool of over 500 candidates by a panel that included The Community Foundation of New Jersey, The Star Ledger Powering NJ.com and the Governor’s Advisory Council on Volunteerism.
David was thrilled to attend the award ceremony on June 9 with his mother and girlfriend. He was touched, humbled and honored by the magnitude and meaning of the award. “Cancer gave me a purpose in life and David’s Dream and Believe Cancer Foundation is my vehicle,” David said. He also referred to the words of Mother Theresa – “I alone cannot change the world but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples.” As the driving force behind the Foundation, which has donated in excess of $250,000 to cancer patients in just four years of existence, David has created ripples that have already changed the lives of many families affected by the disease.
The Jefferson Awards were created in 1972 by Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Robert Taft Jr. and Sam Beard. It is America’s Highest Honor for Public Service, a Nobel Peace Prize for Public Service. To add to the enormity of the award ceremony, Sam Beard and New Jersey Lieutenant Governor Kim Guadagno spoke during the ceremony. Past national winners are a “Who’s Who” of American history makers including Justice Sandra Day O’Connor, Secretary of State Colin Powell, Barbara Bush, Senator Ted Kennedy, Oprah Winfrey, Peyton Manning and one of David’s favorite NY Yankees Mariano Rivera. In the June 15th Sunday Edition of the Star Ledger a full-page recognized the 2014 Jefferson Award Honorees with the caption “Please join the State of New Jersey, the White House and the United States Senate in congratulating these outstanding individuals for their remarkable volunteer achievements.” The community applauds David as a champion for cancer patients, and as a Jefferson Award recipient.
About David’s Dream & Believe Cancer Foundation
David’s Dream and Believe Cancer Foundation is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit that raises funds to provide financial assistance and services to families primarily in New Jersey affected by a cancer diagnosis. David Caldarella, founder and Stage IV cancer survivor, established David’s Dream and Believe Cancer Foundation in 2010. The Foundation has committed all of its resources to assisting the community in the fight against cancer, and holds many events throughout the year to raise funds to support this cause. In addition to the Jetty Coquina Jam – an all-female surf contest on LBI where 100% of the proceeds are directed back to local breast cancer patients, DDBCF holds the “Frank V Panzone Jr. Memorial Cruisin’ for a Cure” presented by Panzone’s Pizza & Pasta, “Crabbin’ for a Cure” presented by Mud City Crab House and the “Island Gala & Casino Night” presented by the Sea Shell Resort Resort & Beach Club. The foundation also participates in Chowderfest and various other community festivals. To date, the Foundation has donated over $250,000 to families affected by a cancer diagnosis.