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Champion the Cure Challenge Announces 2019 Honorees

Date: 02/06/2019

It takes an entire community to provide cancer patients and their families with the care and support they need to live their healthiest possible lives. Each year, Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center Foundation recognizes individuals, organizations, and businesses that go above and beyond for those affected by cancer by supporting Champion the Cure Challenge, the largest cancer fundraising event in eastern and northern Maine.

Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center Foundation is pleased to recognize its 2019 Champion the Cure Challenge Honorees:

Deborah Carey Johnson, Honorary Chair

Ms. Johnson worked at Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center for more than four decades, serving as president and CEO for the last 13 years of her career until she retired in 2017. A strong advocate for improving cancer care in our community, she oversaw development of the Lafayette Family Cancer Institute and the hospital’s recent modernization project.

Parker Brown, Youth Champion

Since 2014, Parker has coordinated the Can Cancer initiative in hopes that his work will help find a cure for cancer. Parker invites community members who share in his vision to drop off bottles and cans to a collection site in Hampden. The returnables are cashed in, with all proceeds supporting Champion the Cure Challenge. Parker keeps the drop off location free of trash, mows the lawn, trims the bushes, and keeps track of the community’s contributions on a chart for all to see.

Michele Campbell, Terry Fox Award

Ms. Campbell was diagnosed with breast cancer at age 30, just months after having her first child. After successful treatment, her cancer reoccurred twice, but with help from medication made possible by research, she is now cancer free. Like Terry Fox, the athlete and cancer patient who attempted to run across Canada to raise money for cancer after losing his leg to the disease in 1981, Ms. Campbell serves as an inspiration to others.
Mt. Waldo Plastics, Corporate Champion

A long-time supporter of local cancer treatment and research, Mt. Waldo Plastics has raised more than $50,000 for Champion the Cure Challenge through sales of their limited edition pink Snofighter shovel. Two dollars from the purchase of every shovel, which is available in stores in Central, Eastern, and Downeast Maine, is donated to Champion the Cure Challenge.

Deb Neuman, Volunteer of the Year

Ms. Neuman is the “voice” of Champion the Cure Challenge, serving as event emcee. Her infectious energy, beginning with the sendoff of the 100-mile cyclists at daybreak and continuing throughout the event, sets the stage for an inspirational day. Ms. Neuman is president and CEO of the Bangor Region Chamber of Commerce, has held positions with several local media organizations, and is one of the region’s leading business experts.

Ntension, Community Champion

A wholesale full-service manufacturer of custom fabric exhibitry based in Hermon, Ntension has supported Champion the Cure Challenge for nine years. Ntension is responsible for one of the most iconic symbols of Champion the Cure Challenge, the large fabric-wrapped arch at the start/finish line, which the company has provided at no charge.

“Our honorees are the shining stars of Champion the Cure Challenge,” says Jeni Lloyd, philanthropy officer, Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center Foundation. “Their passion comes through in the number of hours they donate, the money they raise, and the lives they touch by setting a standard for others to follow. I can’t thank them enough for their tireless commitment to local cancer treatment and research.”

For more information about Champion the Cure Challenge and to register for this year's events, please visit