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Gullikson Foundation Fights Brain Tumors

February 26, 2009 04:12 PM

The Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation (PBTF) is pleased to announce the formation of the Tim & Tom Gullikson Family Support Fund in support of its college scholarship program.

The Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation (TTGF), founded in 1995 to support brain tumor patients and their families, has dissolved and has transferred its remaining funds to the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation to formally establish the Tim & Tom Gullikson Family Support Fund at the PBTF. This generous grant of more than $700,000 greatly expands the PBTF's college scholarship resources. The foundation is based in Asheville, N.C.

With the help of the tennis community, the TTGF has touched the lives of brain tumor patients and their families for over 13 years. The Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation was inspired in 1995 when Tim Gullikson, a former ATP Tennis champion and coach of such notable players as Martina Navratilova and Pete Sampras, was diagnosed with brain tumors. As a world-class tennis competitor and coach, Tim was convinced that the lessons he learned on and off the court would be helpful in enhancing the quality of life for brain tumor patients and their families. On that hopeful premise, Tim and his twin brother, Tom, and Tim’s wife, Rosemary, formed the Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation.

Tim lost his battle to brain tumors in 1996, but his vision for the TTGF flourished with tremendous support from concerned individuals, business leaders and the tennis community. A Hall of Fame collection of the world's top-ranked tennis players, including Rod Laver, Stan Smith, Stefan Edberg, Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, Jim Courier, John McEnroe, Andy Roddick, Todd Martin, James Blake, Mardy Fish, Bob and Mike Bryan, Chris Evert, Maria Sharapova, Venus Williams, Serena Williams, Martina Navratilova, Steffi Graf, Corina Morariu, Martina Hingis, and Jennifer Capriati, along with other world-class athletes, have rallied over the years to help the TTGF raise over $5 million to advocate for patients and caregivers.

The Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation College Scholarship Program started in 1999 with seed funding from tennis champions Corina Morariu and Pete Sampras, and offered its first college scholarships in 2000. Since that time, the program has granted about $800,000 in scholarships to more than 500 aspiring students who are either brain tumor survivors or siblings or children of brain tumor patients.

"Tim would be thrilled to know of the role the TTGF has played in establishing a brain tumor family support center at Duke University Medical Center, funding the work of neuro-oncology nurses and social workers who provide support to brain tumor patients and caregivers, and supporting the education of brain tumor survivors and students whose lives have been touched by brain tumors through our college scholarship program," said Tom Gullikson, Chairman of the TTGF.

Like the Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation, the PBTF also has a long history of supporting the college education of brain tumor survivors. Since 2002, it has granted 397 scholarships. This long-term commitment to providing financial assistance to and acknowledging the unique accomplishments of brain tumor survivors was instrumental in the TTGF's decision to create the Tim & Tom Gullikson Family Support Fund at the PBTF.

"Our Board determined that, in these challenging economic times, there were greater opportunities to support brain tumor patients by dissolving the Tim & Tom Gullikson Foundation and carrying on Tim’s vision of enhancing the lives of brain tumor patients through the Tim & Tom Gullikson Family Support Fund at the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation," said Rosemary Gullikson, TTGF President. "We are excited about the opportunity to expand our outreach through the Tim and Tom Gullikson Family Support Fund at the PBTF, and we invite you to join us and the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation in continuing this important work."

Mike Traynor, Co-Founder and President of the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation, stated, "We are honored to have the opportunity to continue the legacy of Tim and Tom Gullikson and their families, supporters, and donors through the creation of the Tim and Tom Gullikson Family Support Fund at the Pediatric Brain Tumor Foundation. Through this effort we look forward to expanding the Gulliksons' vision to bring hope to brain tumor patients and the means to advance their education."

Several tennis events are planned to benefit the Tim & Tom Gullikson Family Support Fund at the PBTF. First up is Madisen’s Match on Feb. 21, 2009, in Estero, Fla., followed by the Pro Doubles Invitational in Milwaukee, Wis., May 20-24, 2009. For more information about these events, please go to www.pbtfus.org/calendar/.




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