The nonprofit MS Hope Foundation has been renamed the Tom Sherak MS Hope Foundation in remembrance of longtime Hollywood power player, former Oscar Academy president and LA film czar Tom Sherak, who died yesterday at 68. He was a key figure at the charity, which supports programs and services and cutting-edge research to combat the disease. The foundation’s board president Annis Kishner announced the name change in a blog post this morning. Here’s the statement from Kishner, who was brought into the organization by Sherak; his daughter was diagnosed with MS at age 15:
It is with deep sadness that we mourn the passing of our founder Tom Sherak. We along with the countless people who suffer from this terrible disease with no known cure have lost a great friend. Tom was our inspiration and, while he might not agree, our leader. He continually rallied us to step up our efforts to fight this incapacitating condition that plagues not only his daughter but millions worldwide. We will miss his infectious spirit of optimism that we can make a difference in the lives of those who suffer daily.
To honor Tom’s memory and his uncompromising resolve to raise both awareness and the research funds needed to counterattack Multiple Sclerosis we are renaming our organization effectively immediately The Tom Sherak MS Hope Foundation. Tom gave us all hope. He continues to inspire us, and we pledge in his memory to continue his fight against MS with equal energy and determination. Our thoughts and prayers are with Tom’s family.