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kids on the heart walk

Upstate remains top fundraiser for this year's Virtual Heart Walk

More than three weeks after the American Heart Association’s Virtual Heart Walk, which, because of the COVID pandemic, was held as a virtual event April 19, Upstate Medical University remains the walk’s top fund-raising entity with more than $24,000 raised by the Upstate community.

Upstate continues to be one of the Heart Walk’s most steadfast supporters, raising nearly $250,000 in the past five years.

“The work of the American Heart Association to be a relentless force for longer and healthier lives for all of our residents is certainly made possible through the generosity of spirit and donations generated by the leadership and staff of Upstate Medical University," said Franklin Fry, executive director of the American Heart Association.  “We are so proud to collaborate with Upstate in many ways throughout the year to improve community health.  And we look forward to being able to celebrate these results in-person when we can safely do so. Until, please accept our heartfelt appreciation for all you do.”

Upstate Interim President Mantosh Dewan, MD, says it’s not surprising that Upstate embraces this civic activity.

“We have great partners in the American Heart Association,” Dewan said. “They have supported our clinical focus in cardiac conditions and stroke treatment and care and have recognized our excellence in these areas with their ongoing reviews of our work.”

Dewan said Upstate’s partnership with the association extends to community education programs and research, where Upstate has received nearly $7 million in grant support from the association over the years.

Upstate's Zanette Howe, who coordinated Team Upstate’s activity in the Heart Walk, applauded the university’s efforts.

“Team Upstate always steps out in big way for the Heart Walk,” said Howe. “All aspects of our campus, including our students, are always eager to participate in this important event.”

Howe said that although this year’s event was impacted by the COVID pandemic, which forced the event to be a virtual walk, Upstate’s Heart Walk team captains were focused on ensuring Upstate remain a top contributor.

“I cannot say enough about all our team captains and how each year they inspire their coworkers and others to support this wonderful event,” Howe said.

Caption: Upstate families, including children, participated in this year's Heart Walk.