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St. Louis chapter of Cystic Fibrosis Foundation honors Thompson Coburn with Champion Award

February 16, 2023

The Gateway Chapter of the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, a national organization dedicated to curing cystic fibrosis and supporting people with CF, recently honored Thompson Coburn for its 25 years of support for the CF Foundation.  

Thompson Coburn intellectual property partner Steve Garlock and Management Committee member Michele Kloeppel accepted the award at the chapter’s annual volunteer recognition celebration on February 8 in St. Louis. 

Steve is a past president of the Gateway Chapter and has served on its board since 1997. Thompson Coburn’s support of the chapter stretches back just as far, and has included the generous involvement of our clients Perficient, Hunter Engineering Company and The Millstone Foundation

Steve was moved to get involved with the CF Foundation because of his sister, Jane. When Jane was diagnosed with CF as a child, the disease carried a terminal diagnosis: Doctors told their family the median life expectancy of someone with the disease was only 10 years. 

[Steve and Jane]
Steve and Jane

“Today, Jane is living proof that because of the amazing research funded by CF Foundation, the median life expectancy of people with CF has increased dramatically,” said Steve. “Also, the foundation’s investment in research and a dynamic drug development pipeline has resulted in effective treatments for asthma, lung disease and other respiratory illnesses.” 

In addition to leading numerous fundraising efforts for the Gateway Chapter, Steve was instrumental in a special project involving Hall of Fame Cardinals baseball announcer Jack Buck, a longtime honorary chair of the Gateway Chapter of the CF Foundation. Not long before his death in 2002, Jack signed over the copyright for a book of his poems and stories to the Gateway Chapter, allowing the CF Foundation to benefit from the book’s sales. 

“I was lucky enough to join Jack in the booth during a few innings of a Cardinals game around that time,” Steve recalled. “It was a special moment, and I’ll always be grateful for Jack’s unabashed support of our chapter for many years.” 

Cystic fibrosis is a genetic disorder that affects the lungs, pancreas, and other organs. There are close to 40,000 children and adults living with cystic fibrosis in the United States, and CF can affect people of every racial and ethnic group. About 1,000 new cases of CF are diagnosed each year. Today, because of improved medical treatments and care, many people with CF can expect to live healthy, fulfilling lives into their 30s, 40s, and beyond.

The CF Foundation supports people with CF by accrediting more than 130 care centers that provide expert CF care and specialized disease management. The foundation also supports research to discover and develop new CF treatments and maintaining a pipeline of potential therapies that target the disease from every angle.

If you’re interested in getting involved in the fight against CF, here are some upcoming events from the Gateway Chapter, or check with your local chapter for more ways to help. 

Great Strides 3-Mile Walk - May 20, 2023

Gateway Xtreme Hike – September 22-24, 2023

Gateway Reach for a Star Gala – November 17, 2023