Jenny Sanford makes $100,000 pledge

Jenny Sanford

Jenny Sanford has pledged $100,000 to the Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina for skin cancer treatment and research. The gift will establish the Jenny Sullivan Sanford Melanoma and Skin Cancer Program.

Sanford, a member of the Hollings Cancer Center Advisory Board and South Carolina's first lady from 2003-2010 is making the gift personally and from the Susan R. and John W. Sullivan Foundation, a private philanthropic foundation named for her parents.

"With a mother who has survived numerous melanoma diagnoses over three decades, I have long been aware of the dangers of the sun and the importance of cancer prevention and early detection," Sanford said. "We all need to be vigilant about our risks for skin- and other cancers. To that end, I am happy to help launch the new program to provide comprehensive focus to our efforts in skin cancer."

Dr. Andrew S. Kraft, director of Hollings Cancer Center, praised Sanford's service and generosity to the cancer center and to cancer patients.

"Mrs. Sanford brings considerable knowledge and sensitivity to her work with us, and we thank her for her support," Kraft said. "Considering the rates of skin cancer and melanoma we face in our state, this program will play an important role in our research and treatment efforts."

Skin cancer is the most common cancer in the United States, with 1 million new cases expected to occur this year. Of those cases, about 69,000 Americans will be diagnosed with melanoma -- a less common but very dangerous type of skin cancer -- this year. An estimated 8,600 people will die from it.