News Highlights

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ALS Assoc MA Chapter Donates $600,000 to Research

The ALS Association, Massachusetts Chapter has allocated $600,000 raised by last year's ALS Ice Bucket Challenge to The ALS Association’s global research program.  The funds represent money generated locally, in the state of Massachusetts, from all the events that took place over a short period of time in the summer of 2014,when the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge went viral throughout the United States, and eventually nationwide. In total $115 million raised from events throughout the world was donated to the ALS Association.

The Massachusetts chapter worked closely with Pete Frates and his family, and recently received the prestigious Chairman’s Award at the Association’s Annual meeting.  "It was wonderful to present the Massachusetts Chapter with the Chairman's Award, which recognizes outstanding partnership and collaboration to advance the mission of The ALS Association. We are so proud of The Massachusetts Chapter, not only for this significant contribution to research, but for all the programs and services they provide to help patients and families live with this disease," said Barbara J. Newhouse, President and CEO of The ALS Association.  "Six months after the amazing success of last summer’s ALS Ice Bucket Challenge we're so pleased to donate this significant amount of money to ALS research.  We feel that we are honoring the wishes of the majority of donors who wanted their contributions to be directed to advancing ALS research " said Ike Papadopoulos, Chairman of the Board of Directors of The ALS Association, Massachusetts Chapter. “We need more research such as much-needed development of therapies that ideally would lengthen the life of an ALS patient.

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Highlights from the Worcester Walk to Defeat ALS



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The Worcester Walk was Saturday, May 2nd at Foley Field, and we raised $60,000, with over 400 participants.  Our top fundraising team was: Friends of Sharon and our top fundraiser was:  Celine Vienneau from Team Snap Crackle Pop Pop. What a special day – including a Tribute Tent where we honored the loved ones we walk for.  Thank you, all!  Remember, you can still make donations to the Worcester Walk at

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Thank you – Beverly Hospital!

On April 10th 2015, Director of Development, Laura O’Connor presented our Certificate of Appreciation

to Beverly Hospital, which raised over $1,500 for the ALS Association’s Ice Bucket Challenge last August!

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Dr. Peter Short (left) and Dr. Robert Tufts (right), with ALS Staff member, Laura O’Connor, Director of Development

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Mary Forshay Scholarship



Robert Forshay, Member of the Massachusetts Board of Trustees presents the Mary Forshay scholarship to Maggie Balz, SLP, CCA at Massachusetts General Hospital. This scholarship enables a clinician from the MGH ALS Clinic to attend The Association's annual Advocacy Day event in Washington, DC. The scholarship is named in loving memory of Mary Forshay (Bob's wife) who was a nurse and an ALS patient who received treatment and care at MGH.

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Walk to Defeat ALS - Enjoy some photos!



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Ride to Defeat ALS a Great Success!  Over $190,000 raised - we thank you!


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Ride 3  Ride 4

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What a great story as Cumberland Farms donates the proceeds from the profits of selling thousands of bags of ice for the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.

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A wonderful day!  Resulting in over $45,000 raised for the ALS Association in Massachusetts. We thank all our golfers, sponsors, volunteers, and auction bidders - hope you enjoy the photos.

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Boston Walk to Defeat ALS

Held on October 26th, with over 1,000 walkers and many more family, friends, volunteers and sponsors, we raised over $320,000 - Congratulations, Boston - here are some photos from the great day -

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Wakefield Walk to Defeat ALS

Held on October 19th, with over 700 walkers and many more family, friends, volunteers and sponsors, we raised over $135,000 - Congratulations, Wakefield - here are some photos from the great day!

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                    To view more photos, go to our Dropbox folder - here:

And - please go to our Facebook page for more photos of both the Wakefield & Boston Walks - and Worcester, too...


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In this episode of About Health, host Jeanne Blake discuss the topic of ALS with Sheila O'Connell, who was diagnosed

with ALS in 2011 and Lynn Aaronson, the Executive Director of the Massachusetts Chapter of the ALS Association.




SWING FOR ALS 2013 - A GREAT HIT! - Raising over $65,000 - THANK YOU!

(See the links, below, for more photos)

Swing for ALS 2013 - 1  Swing for ALS - 2

Swing for ALS 2013 - 3  Swing for ALS 2013 - 4

Swing for ALS 2013 - 5

   Swing for ALS 2013 - 6


SEE MORE PHOTOS, HERE, from our friend, Chris Babiana:


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SEE MORE PHOTOS, HERE, from our friend, Nick Oldford:



AWARDS from our national conference!

Walk to Defeat ALS awards were given to the chapter for “Best Corporate Team Spirit” for our friends at Monotype Imaging from the Wakefield Walk.

We also received a Best Team Week award - AND we were nominated for the best Walk to Defeat ALS chapter of the year.




The Mass Chapter received an award at our annual Leadership Conference.

The "Triumph Award" was given for outstanding efforts to deliver and strengthen programs and services

in the face of great adversity and challenge" - such a wonderful honor!


national award

Reprinted from WICKED LOCAL-Melrose edition:

Family ties inspire Melrose youth to fight ALS


Although small in stature, Katy Pierce is taking some giant steps to help find a cure for amyotrophic
lateral sclerosis (ALS). Her most recent effort was in September, when she completed the Walk to Defeat ALS at Castle Island in Boston.
Often referred to as Lou Gehrig’s disease, ALS is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. In 2010, shortly after finishing the London to Paris bike race, Bob Pierce, Katy’s dad, was diagnosed with ALS.  “He developed some twitching in his muscles, which we though was just related to the extreme biking,” said Katy’s mother Christine Pierce. “Later he had some tests done and they diagnosed him with ALS.”  At the time, the Pierce family was living in Switzerland for Bob’s job. He soon flew back to the States for additional testing, where it was determined he had both ALS and Lyme disease. Shortly after, they moved back to their residence in Melrose. It didn’t take long for Katy, now 11 years old, to take up the cause. By the end of her two-mile walk on Sept. 29, she raised $7,500, becoming one of top fundraisers for the event.  “It felt really good. I think I was one of the youngest people raising money and I got [the] second- highest [pledge],” she said. “I like raising the money and feeling good that I helped other people, including my dad.”  The initiative started with some saved-up allowance money, but her efforts quickly took off. Through emails, Bob’s care page, Facebook and the walk’s ALS fundraising website, Katy continued to garner donation after donation.  “Her initial goal was to raise $100, so she was quite pleased and excited that it ended up becoming much more than that,” said Christine. “She ended up collecting money from people all around the world.”
Katy participated in the walk with her mother Christine, her 9-year-old sister Abby and the family’s dog, Cooper. Friends, neighbors and colleagues from Bob’s company, Biogen Idec, were part of the team, and Bob also participated, riding alongside his family in his wheelchair “I am continuously touched and awed by the amount of support we have received from family, friends and my work colleagues,” said Bob in an email to the Free Press. “The ALS walk was no exception.” Katy’s efforts came as no surprise to Bob or Christine, as the ambitious sixth-grader is always looking for ways to help others and raise money for a good cause. “She has always been very charitable,” said Christine. “We’re proud of her for taking the initiative.” As daddy’s little girl, Katy hasn’t let her father’s disability get in the way of them spending quality time together. The two have similar interests in movies and books and take every opportunity to be with one another. “We like to just hang out, play with our dog and we like to watch ‘The Avengers,’” said Katy. Despite the challenges Bob now faces with his speech, mobility and increased fatigue, his connection with his family remains strong. “Katy and Abby are amazingly resilient, in part because we are very open and discuss what is happening as a family,” he said. “They are also both very good about helping me as needed.”

WALK TO DEFEAT ALS - NORTH SHORE - Enjoy some photos!



AND, here!  This link will take you to a full album of photos...




WALK TO DEFEAT ALS - BOSTON - Enjoy some photos!


Thank you to our Presenting Sponsor, Biogen Idec - and their 106 member team who raised over $16,000!

Here is a link to hundreds of photos from the Boston Walk:







A great day with over 150 riders plus friends and volunteers - looks like we will raise approximately $105,000 - thank you to all!


Story in the Boston Business Journal in August, 2012 highlighted

research being done in our home state...

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Symposium Held in Boston - Sharing Information


Lucie Bruijn, PhD, Chief Scientist, The ALS Assn.

1.jpg  SWING FOR ALS a great success!

Over $52,000 raised for ALS programs and support services right here in Massachusetts....

New Support Group Begins in Worcester - story covered 1st day of publication for new GoLocalWorcester:



Chapter Mentioned in Worcester Telegram and Gazette  
Chapter Representatives Featured on Fox 25  
Boston Herald Follow-Up Story  
The ALS Association Massachusetts Chapter makes the front cover of the Boston Herald  
The ALS Association Massachusetts Chapter delivers holiday gifts to children: Patriot Ledger  
"Say It With Flowers featured in: The Improper Bostonian, The Boston Herald's Inside Track and The Boston Globe  
The Central MA Walk to Defeat ALS's key volunteer was featured in the Hudson Sun  
The event chair for our North Shore Walk to Defeat ALS was featured in the Saugus Advertiser  
The First Inaugural Patriot Place Walk to Defeat ALS was featured in the Sun Chronicle  
The ALS Association Massachusetts Chapter was quoted in the Boston Globe  
Malden resident rides bike cross-country for ALS  

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