7-Time Olympic Medalist & Ovarian Cancer Survivor, Shannon Miller, receives 2017 Ovarcome Excellence Award; More than $150,000 raised at Ovarcome Annual Gala

“You don’t have to be an Olympian to fight cancer,” Olympic Gymnast Shannon Miller said before receiving the 2017 Ovarcome Excellence Award.


It was a night of teal BONDing as more than 250 people attended the Ovar the Moon: License to Teal, a James Bond theme inspired gala at Hotel Sorella on May 13 to rejoice, celebrate and stand unified in the fight against ovarian cancer.


Miller’s speech before accepting the excellence award was inspiring for many of the caregivers, physicians, ovarian cancer survivors, and friends of Ovarcome in attendance.


In 2011, Miller was diagnosed with a rare form of ovarian cancer. She had the baseball sized tumor removed successfully and followed up with an aggressive chemotherapy regimen. Now cancer free, Shannon continues to be a strong advocate for awareness and early detection.


“It was our privilege to host seven-time Olympic gold medalist and ovarian cancer survivor, Shannon Miller at our gala and to bestow the Ovarcome Excellence Award 2017 on her,” Ovarcome President, CEO and Founder Runsi Sen said. “Shannon was most gracious, friendly, beautiful, charming, and engaged with our audience. Shannon’s speech was uplifting and energizing, especially for the survivors in the room.”


The night was celebration of the survivors and a salute to their vigor and determination to fight the deadliest gynecological disease.


Awards and honorees include:

Dr. Rob Coleman of MD Anderson Cancer Center, Dr. Aparna Kamat from Houston Methodist, and Sylvia Brown from Memorial Hermann Cancer Center received the Ovarcome Heroes Awards for their extraordinary contributions in the field of ovarian cancer.


Young Investigator Research Awards were given to Marina Stasenko from Memorial Sloane Kettering and Christine Garcia from University of Virginia.


The Survivor Honorees of the evening, Beth Patterson, Kirra Jones, Deme Anderson and Vanita Reed, were showered with love and recognition for their strength, beauty, and conviction in conquering the disease. Together, hand in hand, arms linked together in pride, each survivor celebrated their lives and what it meant to have one another. Khambrel Marshall, from KPRC2 emceed the event with Bond precision! River Oaks School of Dancing gave a magical performance to the SkyFall song, along with a 33-year-old ovarian cancer survivor Diana Ploch accompanied by her beloved mother Eileen Ploch, in celebration of Mother’s Day weekend.


The money raised from the gala will go toward the many new and upcoming projects for Ovarcome.

“We are working to launch a few new initiatives in the next few months, which will help enhance the lives of women and families impacted by ovarian cancer, helping them through the lifecycle of diagnosis. We plan to expand our national and international grassroots awareness efforts as we diffuse boundaries and unite hearts in our unified stand against ovarian cancer,” Sen said. “We also hope to provide larger research funding through increased collaborations and new partnerships. Together, we can Ovarcome!”


To view pictures from our 2017 Gala, please click here


We hope to see you again next year – stay tuned for our 2018 Gala!