Maryann Rasmussen Sets Fundraising Record for the American Cancer Society

Maryann Rasmussen has served on the Women’s Board of the Chicago Region Division of the American Cancer Society for more than 16 years.

Under her chairmanship, the Women’s Board annual fashion show event set a new record in 2002 that has yet to be surpassed: More than half-a-million dollars ($538,000, to be exact) for cancer research, patient navigation services (which holds patients’ hands through every step of the cancer journey) and many other programs that ACS offers.

Maria Pinto was honored with the Visionary Award at this year’s fashion show.

“I try to teach my children the importance of giving back, and charity. That’s how I was raised,” she says.

Rasmussen has served two terms as the Women’s Board president and, in addition to the fashion show success, she instituted another fundraising event to reach a new, broader audience: The Author’s Fall Book Event.

She speaks passionately about ACS programs, such as the advocacy that allows mammograms to be covered by health insurance and keeps restaurants free of secondhand smoke. “It’s a phenomenal organization,” she says.

She also serves on the Winnetka Northwestern University Settlement House Board, where she helps fundraise for inner city charter schools for high-risk youth. She also teaches Sunday school and serves on Saints Peter & Paul Ladies ‘Friends of the Needy’ board where she fundraises for the poor.