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Past Events

2016 Festival of Life

We want to thank everyone that came to our Festival of Life on November 19th.  This event was well attended and all proceeds from the luncheon and auction went to the Transplant Endowment.  After our lunch at The Westin Michigan Avenue Chicago, participants went to see the Festival of Lights parade in which Transplant Village had a float.


Sharkfest Swim 2015

Our annual Sharkfest Swim was a huge success.  We had a great turnout at the event which took place August 8, 2015.  People not only enjoyed a rigorous swim, but also a day at the beach where they had the chance to spend quality time with others involved in the transplant community.  The event raised awareness of  Northwestern Medicine’s Comprehensive Transplant Center (CTC) and was enjoyed by all who attended.


2015 Transplant Advisory Council Spring Open Meeting

During this meeting, we welcomed spring and had a special tribute to organ donors who make new life possible. This was a free educational event sponsored by Northwestern Memorial Foundation.

Elisa J. Gordon, PhD, MPH was our featured speaker. Dr. Gordon is a medical anthropologist and ethicist whose work is critical in helping patients and their families understand the complexities of transplantation so they can make truly informed decisions.  In transplant medicine, there is little information available to the layperson. The clinical data that are published in scientific journals are typically not helpful to patients because of the complexity of the scientific studies and their use of medical jargon. Dr. Gordon’s work bridges the gap between published clinical data and information that is useful to patients.

Dr. Gordon discussed the concept of shared decision-making and presenting some of the helpful tools being developed at the Comprehensive Transplant Center to facilitate ethical, patient-centered education around transplant procedures.

2014: Transplant Village’s Year in Review

What a successful year for Transplant Village! We not only quadrupled our fundraising dollars from 2013—but we also gathered thousands of transplant recipients and their families at numerous events, including:

  • Open Meeting — In March, we hosted an open meeting and gathered with more 150 transplant recipients and their families for a meet and greet. Attendees learned about research that has allowed patients to stop taking all anti-rejection medications just one year after they received a new kidney.
  • 50th Anniversary of Transplant Program — In April, more than 500 of us gathered to celebrate the 50th anniversary of transplantation at Northwestern Medicine in a sold-out event!
  • First Annual Sharkfest Swim — In August, we hosted the first annual Sharkfest Swim, exposing our mission to thousands of people along the lakefront.
  • Patient Transplant Anniversaries — We closed out the year in November by celebrating Transplant Anniversaries at the Transplant Advisory Council’s open meeting.

Read on to learn more about each of our events. Stay tuned for our Upcoming Events in 2015!

All Village Event November 2014

Celebrating Tranplantaversaries!  Thanks to all who came to our Transplant Anniversary event.  It was so incredible to hear your transplant stories and completely inspiring to see how many people were celebrating transplants that happened over 25 years ago.  At events like these, we are able to truly appreciate how far transplant has come, and how hopeful the future of transplant is.

First Annual Sharkfest Swim August 2014

The annual Sharkfest Swim benefiting Transplant Village was a huge success.  We’d like to share photos with you from the event and hope that you’ll join us Saturday, August 8, 2015, for our 2nd Annual Sharkfest swim!  The 2014 Sharkfest was a very successful event, we are so thankful to all of the volunteers that came out to help with registration and race duties.  Connie’s pizza donated more pizza that we could eat, and the Jesse White tumblers put on an amazing show for us on the beach post race.  We were so honored to be chosen by Sharkfest to co-host this event.  Thank you to all who came and all who took the plunge in cold Lake Michigan!

Arkes Pavilion Artwork Unveiling June 2014

We had a full room on Thursday to unveil a piece of artwork at the Comprehensive Transplant Center, Arkes Pavilion, 19th Floor. The artwork features dozens of thank you messages from transplant recipients and their families. It is strategically located in the room where incoming transplant patients come for orientation. Thanks for all who contributed to the artwork, it is a great source of inspiration for those starting their journey with transplant!

» View New Art Honors 50 Years of Organ Transplantation Blog

Where Tomorrow Begins Brunch April 2014

This magically successful  event was SOLD OUT filling over 500 seats with Transplant patients, families, etc. David Plummer from Windy City Live was our MC, Jesse White even showed up to say a few words. We showcased 14 research presentations in the gathering area to inform our village of the latest and greatest advancement in Transplant research. There was even a thank you note table that allowed recipients to write to their surgeons, and a piece of artwork to write encouraging words to incoming transplant patients and their families.

» View Full Where Tomorrow Begins Page

All Village Event March 2014

Our speaker, Dr. Joseph Leventhal, discussed his groundbreaking efforts to engineer stem cells. Initial results have enabled five patients to stop taking all anti-rejection medications in just one year after they received a new kidney!   Transplant recipients and their families had the opportunity to visit with each other and with Northwestern staff, and were able to learn more about Transplant Village and their mission to support the future of organ transplantation at Northwestern Medicine while connecting and supporting the transplant community.