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The Ellen Hermanson Foundation was established in 1997 to honor the memory of Ellen Hermanson and carry on the important work to which she devoted so much of her time and energy. An activist and an advocate, Ellen channeled her journalistic talents to become a forceful voice for breast cancer patients and their families. She educated her readers about the importance of early detection, the challenges of living with breast cancer, the very real, but little-discussed or understood, issue of pain management, and the debilitating effects of breast cancer on the entire family.


The Ellen Hermanson Foundation is continuing Ellen’s work by focusing on three areas, primarily to serve breast cancer patients on the East End of Long Island:

  • educational outreach about the importance of mammography and early detection to medically under-served communities of women;
  • psychosocial support services that address the broad range of issues facing breast cancer patients, survivors, spouses, families, and friends; and
  • research on improving understanding of pain management and methods for treating pain.

The Ellen Hermanson Foundation is unique in its commitment to helping breast cancer patients and their families cope with the changing nature of the physical and emotional aspects of breast cancer.


Ellen’s Run is both the fundraising vehicle for the Foundation and an annual 5k (3.1-mile) race. An innovative, grassroots event, the Run has gone far toward meeting the Foundation’s goals. Held on the East End of Long Island, where breast cancer diagnosis and mortality rates are among the highest in the state, Ellen’s Run draws on the strength of the local community and gives back to the community, in the form of local projects, the bulk of the money raised.

Ellen's Run 2010
Photo by Rivalyn Zweig Photography

Proceeds from Ellen’s Run support the new Ellen Hermanson Breast Center at Southampton Hospital. The Foundation has also funded much state-of-the-art technology at Southampton Hospital, such as digital mammography equipment. Ellen’s Run also supports Ellen’s Well, a program that since May 2000 has provided psychosocial support for breast cancer survivors on Long Island’s East End under the leadership of a specially trained certified social worker.

The race itself is a family event, aimed at both serious runners—women and men alike—and casual runners, as well as walkers and supporters of all ages. It engenders camaraderie and community as participants support or memorialize a loved one. Breast cancer survivors are recognized and applauded for their courage. A special prize is awarded to the first breast cancer survivor to finish the race. Those who have been touched by the disease or the specter of the disease have the chance to take a positive step.

The First Annual Ellen’s Run attracted more than 500 participants and raised more than $62,000—an astonishing success for a first-time event. By the third year, the amount of money raised had more than doubled. By its fourth year, Ellen's Run had become the largest race on the South Fork, with nearly 900 registered participants. It raised more than $160,000. As we approach our 16th year, we have grown to over 1,000 participants and have awarded approximately $2.7 million in grants.



Patti Kenner
Emily Levin, Vice Chair
Hugo Moreno
Julie Ratner, Chair
Iris Shokoff
Cathy Tweedy
Rivalyn Zweig


  • Louis Avento, M.D., medical oncologist, Eastern Long Island Hematology and Oncology
  • Deborah Axelrod, M.D., Director of Clinical Breast Services and Breast Surgery and Medical Director of Community Cancer Outreach at NYU’s Clinical Cancer Center
  • William Brancaccio, M.D., Chairman of Radiology, Southampton Hospital
  • Kathleen Foley, M.D., Attending Neurologist in the Pain and Palliative Care Service at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • Juan Gargiulo, M.D., President of Pain Management and Vice President of Anesthesia, Southampton Hospital
  • Larry Norton, M.D., Deputy Physician-in-Chief and Director of Breast Center Programs at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center
  • Karrie Zampini, M.S.W., Director of Post-Treatment Resource Program of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (Emerita)

The Ellen P. Hermanson Foundation was incorporated under the not-for-profit laws of the State of New York and is exempt from taxation under Section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code. Donations to The Ellen P. Hermanson Foundation are tax deductible to the extent allowed by law.

Copies of the Foundation's Form 990 are available at www.guidestar.org. A copy of the Foundation's Form 990 for the past five tax years may also be obtained by called (212) 840-0916 to request a copy.

The Ellen P. Hermanson Foundation respects its donors' rights to privacy and confidentiality and does not release any information pertaining to its donors without their express written permission.









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