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Proven Winners ColorChoice Shrubs Funds Breast Cancer Researcher

By 2012-09-28

Invincibelle® Spirit, the pink-flowered ‘Annabelle’ hydrangea from Proven Winners, has met a monumental fundraising goal in its three-year partnership with The Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF). BCRF offers partners the unique opportunity to fund a researcher if they donate $250,000 within BCRF’s fiscal year. Funds raised from sales of the flowering shrub, along with those from Pink Day events hosted by garden centers, will support the work of Dr. Carey Anders of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill for all of 2013.

BCRF encourages partners to weigh in on which researcher they’d like their funds to support. Proven Winners ColorChoice suggested a North Carolina-based researcher in homage to the state where Invincibelle Spirit hydrangea was developed by Drs. Tom Ranney and Richard Olsen at North Carolina State University’s Mountain Horticultural Crops Research Center.

Dr. Anders’ BCRF-funded research focuses on new therapies for triple negative breast cancer (TNBC), an especially aggressive form of the disease associated with a high rate of recurrence and low survivorship. Dr. Anders’ research embodies the translational approach championed by BCRF: that promising laboratory research should beget clinical trials. Her work shows especially encouraging results for women who have experienced brain metastasis, a common occurrence with TNBC diagnoses.

“We are so excited to show gardeners who have planted an Invincibelle Spirit hydrangea and the garden centers who have hosted Pink Days that their efforts are truly bearing fruit,” says Tim Wood, director of marketing for Proven Winners ColorChoice, “Supporting the work of Dr. Anders is a poignant testament to the power of the garden and nursery industry.”

Over $472,000 has been raised since Proven Winners ColorChoice Shrubs introduced the plant in 2009. One dollar from every Invincibelle Spirit hydrangea sold has been donated to BCRF. Hundreds of garden centers across the US and Canada have also contributed to the cause by hosting Pink Day fundraisers.

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