Welcome to Conversations with Cancer Survivors, a Q&A series aimed at finding new ways to teach people how to detect cancer early and ways to navigate the doctor-patient experience from those who have been through the process themselves. Neil Feldman is a podiatrist and melanoma survivor, and he talked recently with 15-40 Connection’s Carl Setterlund.

CARL: Neil, thanks for doing this. You joined the 15-40 Connection family this year as one of our cancer survivor advocates and will actually be running the Boston Marathon for Team 15-40 in 2019. Why don’t you share a little bit more about your background? I know you’re also a podiatrist.

NEIL: Well, I grew up in Sharon, Mass., and went to UMass-Amherst, so I’ve been mostly local. Then I went to podiatry school in Chicago, did my residency in California – I was in the Bay Area for three years – spent a year in D.C. and then came back to Massachusetts in 2000.

CARL: And I know one of your hobbies that really defines you is running, and we’re excited that you’ll be representing us at next year’s Boston Marathon. What makes you so passionate about running?

NEIL: I met a 70-year-old lady as a patient in 2000 and she was going out to do an Ironman (Triathlon) in Australia and I was just so blown away by that. It sort of was this thing on my radar that redefined how I want to get older. We moved back to Massachusetts and I did a short triathlon in Sharon, and I was like, you know what, I’m going to do an Ironman, this is just awesome. The next year, I did my first ever Boston Marathon and later that year I did an Ironman. I’ve been on that path ever since and I really haven’t strayed from it. I’ve done seven Ironmans, 12 Boston Marathons, a bunch of other marathons, four 100-milers and several 50-milers. I like to run, as you can tell! In doing so, my practice in podiatry has been a little more geared towards athletes, triathletes, runners, essentially just trying to get people to realize their potential in terms of movement. It’s been really good. I get to work with like-minded people and help people make a difference in their own lives and just get better and healthier and feel better about themselves, which is extremely rewarding.

CARL: I have to imagine, as a doctor and someone who does a lot of long-distance running, that you’re pretty healthy. What is your advice to someone who thinks that, because they live a healthy lifestyle, they can’t get cancer?

NEIL: I was absolutely the picture of health – I am the picture of health. I eat well, I exercise, I take care of myself, and even use sunscreen. The fact is, I’ve spent many years out in the sun biking and running, and my ears are bigger and my hairline is less and it just exposed certain areas. For me, skin cancer was a possibility, but not that I really thought about it at all. My first year in practice, I was down in Virginia and my boss, I found out at 45 or 46 he had metastatic lung cancer, and he was the picture of health as well. He never smoked, he was fit, he was active. That’s always been on my radar that, wow, if it can happen to this guy it can happen to anybody. Nobody’s invincible. You just have to be diligent. Risk factors or not, if you want to live a long, healthy life, you should commit yourself to checking for early signs or symptoms of anything.

CARL: As someone who is both a melanoma survivor and someone who understands the medical system in the United States, you’ve got a good background to coach people on how they can advocate for themselves to gain more control over their health outcomes? What’s your advice on that topic?

NEIL: You have to be proactive. Nobody should care more about your health than yourself. If there’s something that I’m not getting from my doctor, then I need to ask, and if the question isn’t answered, then ask again. Be pushy. If you feel like something’s not right, then you’ve got to get that checked out. If you have specific concerns, then they should be addressed and you should have enough trust and faith in your doctor that they are addressing them in a manner that’s satisfying to you. I’m fortunate, I have an amazing primary care doctor and just a great group of people around me that just listen and that’s the most important thing. You just want somebody who’s going to listen to you and not be dismissive of anything.

CARL: Lastly, if you could be any superhero, who would you want to be?

NEIL: That’s an easy one: Superman. No doubt. I’ve always wanted to fly. I’ve had a number of flying dreams and I always wake up happy.

CARL: Sounds like you, except for the flying part! Neil, thanks for sharing your insights on some important topics and for all your involvement helping us spread the word about 15-40 Connection!

This Q&A has been lightly edited for length and clarity. Early detection can make a lifesaving difference. Learn more about how to identify and act on cancer symptoms with our 3 Steps Detect education.

What’s in it for you?

Much more!

The Power of You! 100% of the proceeds from this event support 15-40 Connection’s lifesaving education. When it comes to cancer symptoms, knowledge is power. 15-40 Connection is saving lives by educating people on how to recognize cancer symptoms early.

Information about the sponsorship opportunities, golf and gala guest packages and gala tickets are below. You can also donate items for our auctions or larger-than-life goody bags. To donate, please email us at info@15-40.org.

PRESENTING SPONSOR | $50,000

Logo and/or name recognition on selected signage and print/media material including*:

Event brochure, auction program, gala program, website, lead position on main sponsor sign at both golf courses, golfer “Goody bag”

12 Player spots with choice of golf course

12 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

12 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

24 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

Opportunity to place branded item(s) in the “Goody bags” distributed to all golfers

GALA SPONSOR | $25,000

Logo and/or name recognition on all signage and in all printed/media material including*:

Event brochure, auction program, gala program, website, main sponsor sign at both golf courses

8 Player spots with choice of golf course

8 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

8 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

16 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

Opportunity to place branded item(s) in the “Goody bags” distributed to all golfers

TOURNAMENT SPONSOR | $25,000

Logo and/or name recognition on all signage and in all printed/media material including*:

Event brochure, gala program, website, main sponsor sign at both golf courses

8 Player spots with choice of golf course

8 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

8 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts\

16 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

Opportunity to place branded item(s) in the “Goody bags” distributed to all golfers

TOURNAMENT LUNCH & SNACK SPONSOR | $10,000

Logo and/or name recognition on selected signage and print/media material including*:

Event brochure, gala program, website, main sponsor sign at both golf courses, thank you acknowledgement at lunch and snack stations

4 Player spots with choice of golf course

4 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

4 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

8 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

Opportunity to place branded item(s) in the “Goody bags” distributed to all golfers

GALA & GOLF ENTERTAINMENT SPONSOR | $6,000

Logo and/or name recognition on selected signage and print/media material including*:

Event brochure, auction program, gala program, main sponsor sign at both golf courses, thank you acknowledgement
announcement from featured entertainers

2 Player spots with choice of golf course

2 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

2 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

4 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

GOLF CART SPONSOR | $6,000

Logo and/or name recognition on selected signage and print/media material including*:

Event brochure and gala program

2 Player spots with choice of golf course

2 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

2 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

4 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

GOLF BALL SPONSOR | $4,000

Logo and/or name recognition on selected signage and printed/media material including*:

Event brochure, gala program, golf ball distributed with “Goody bag” to each golfer

1 Player spot with choice of golf course

1 “Goody bag” jam packed with fun and valuable items

1 Free Prize Drawing Ticket for golfer for a cache of gifts

2 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfer on tournament day

SCOREBOARD SPONSOR | $1,000

Logo and/or name recognition on selected signage and print/media material including*:

Event brochure, gala program, multiple scoreboard signs strategically placed at both tournament golf courses

2 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

TEE SPONSOR | $750

Logo and/or name recognition on selected signage and print/media material including*:

Event brochure, gala program, on two tees sponsorship signs placed at the 1st tee box at both golf courses

2 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

*Printing and/or embroidering deadlines apply to the above.

PLATINUM SUPPORTER | $16,000

Logo and/or name recognition in event brochure, gala program, main sponsor sign at both golf courses*

8 Player spots with choice of golf course

8 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

8 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

16 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

GOLD SUPPORTER | $8,000

Logo and/or name recognition in event brochure, gala program, main sponsor sign at both golf courses*

4 Player spots with choice of golf course

4 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

4 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

8 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

SILVER SUPPORTER | $4,000

Logo and/or name recognition in event brochure, gala program, main sponsor sign at both golf courses*

2 Player spots with choice of golf course

2 “Goody bags” jam packed with fun and valuable items

2 Free Prize Drawing Tickets for golfers for a cache of gifts

4 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfers on tournament day

BRONZE SUPPORTER | $2,000

Logo and/or name recognition in event brochure, gala program, bronze sponsor sign at both golf courses*

1 Player spot with choice of golf course

1 “Goody bag” jam packed with fun and valuable items

1 Free Prize Drawing Tickets golfers for a cache of gifts

2 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

Breakfast, lunch, dinner for golfer on tournament day

*Printing and/or embroidering deadlines apply to the above.

GALA & AUCTION TICKETS | $650

2 Gala guests

Parting gift for each Gala couple

PRIVACY POLICY

Information we collect and how we use it.

The 15-40 Connection, Inc. may collect information independent of Blackbaud- the host for donations. For Blackbaud’s privacy policy, please visit Blackbaud Privacy Policy.

Contact and Personal Information
You may choose to provide contact information (such as your name, address, telephone number and email address) on this web site. Providing this information is strictly voluntary, and the failure to provide information in most instances will not restrict your use of the website. We will not ask you for any credit card number, social security number, driver’s license number or other financial account number on the website except through the donation pages that are hosted by our partner, Blackbaud.  From time to time, 15-40 Connection may host contests or sweepstakes, which will require you to provide information to participate. Here are some of the ways you may provide the information and the types of information you may submit. We also tell you how we may use the information.

Contact Us
If you email us through the “Contact Us” page on this site, we ask you for information such as your name and email address so we can respond to your questions and comments. You may choose to provide additional information as well. You should not provide any credit card number, social security number or other financial account number when using the contact us screen.

Send Content to a Friend Questionnaires and Surveys
We may ask visitors to our web site to complete online surveys and opinion polls about their activities, attitudes and interests. These surveys help us serve you better and improve the usefulness of our site. In conducting these surveys we may ask you for your name and email address. We do not keep any personal information about you in connection with your participation in a 15-40.org survey unless you specifically agree to provide that information.

Send Content to a Friend
You can send certain content to your friends. To do so, we ask you to provide your name and your friend’s email address. We use this information to send the content to your friend.

Public Areas Sweepstakes or Contest Registration
We occasionally may conduct sweepstakes or contests that ask visitors to our web site to complete registration forms that include name, mailing address, phone and email address and additional personal information about their age, activities, attitudes and interests. Registration questions allow us to contact you if you are a winner and help us serve you better and improve the usefulness of our site. Your name, age and home state may be posted on our web site if your name is drawn as a winner.  In conjunction with your Contest Registration, we will also register you as a user of the 15-40 website.  As a registered user, we may also send you news, announcements, requests for donations or similar communications as a result of your Sweepstakes or Contest Registration.  Instructions for opting out of receiving this information appears in the section titled “Opting Out”. We will not sell your information to any other person.

Public Areas
The 15-40 Connection is currently in the process of expanding the content in its public areas (including on social media).  You may comment on a blog, or share your personal information on the 15-40 Connection web site or other social channels. Sharing information is helpful to other visitors to the 15-40 Connection web site who may learn from you experiences. We do keep your personal information in association with your submission.  We do not share your contact information with others without your permission; however, if you provide contact information in a public area, we do not automatically remove it.  Any person visiting the 15-40 Connection public areas would be able to see the information. You may not provide any credit card number, social security number or other financial account number about yourself or another in a public area.  Such information will be violation of our Terms of Use.

Donations
You may choose to make a donation to the 15-40 Connection by visiting pages marked to provide donations.  When making a donation, we will ask for your name, mailing address, phone number and email address and may ask for additional information about your age, activities, attitudes and interests.  You may also choose to have your donation processed with ACH transfers of credit card transactions, which will necessitate that you provide financial account numbers, such as a credit card number, bank account number and bank routing number (“Financial Account Information”).  In conjunction with your Donation, we will also register you as a user of the 15-40 website.  As a registered user, we may also send you news, announcements, requests for donations or similar communications.  Instructions for opting out of receiving this information appears in the section titled “Opting Out”. We will not sell your information to any other person.  We will not store any of your Financial Account Information.

Registrations
From time to time, we may offer you other methods to become a registered user for the website.  When registering, we will ask for information that includes name, mailing address, phone and email address and may ask for additional personal information about your age, activities, attitudes and interests.  As a registered user, we may also send you news, announcements, requests for donations or similar communications as a result of your Sweepstakes or Contest Registration.  Instructions for opting out of receiving this information appears in the section titled “Opting Out”.

Other Information
We collect certain aggregate and non-personal information when you visit this web site. Aggregate and non-personal information does not relate to a single identifiable visitor. It tells us such things as how many users visited our site and the pages accessed. By collecting this information, we learn how to best tailor our web site to our visitors. We collect this information either through “cookie” technology or with “web beacons,” as explained below.

Web Beacons
Certain pages on our site contain “web beacons” (also known as Internet tags, pixel tags and clear GIFs). These web beacons allow third parties to obtain information such as the IP address of the computer that downloaded the page on which the beacon appears, the URL of the page on which the beacon appears, the time the page containing the beacon was viewed, the type of browser used to view the page, and the information in cookies set by the third party. We use log files to store the data that is collected through web beacons. The 15-40 Connection may also use third party web beacons to help manage online advertising. These web beacons would be provided by our ad management partners and Google Analytics. These files enable Google Analytics to recognize a unique cookie on your web browser, which in turn enables us to learn which advertisements bring users to our web site. The cookie on your web browser was placed by the 15-40 Connection, or by another advertiser who works with Google Analytics. With both cookies and web beacon technology, the information that we collect and share is anonymous and not personally identifiable. It does not contain your name, address, telephone number, or email address.

Cookies
Like many organizations, we use browser cookies on this web site. Browser cookies are bits of text that are placed on your computer’s hard drive when you visit certain web sites. We use browser cookies to tell us, for example, whether you’ve visited us before or if you’re a new visitor and to help us identify site features in which you may have the greatest interest. Browser cookies may enhance your online experience by saving your preferences while you are visiting a particular site. The “help” portion of the toolbar on most browsers will tell you how to stop accepting new browser cookies, how to be notified when you receive a new browser cookie, and how to disable existing browser cookies. Remember though, without browser cookies, you may not be able to take full advantage of all our web site features. We may also use flash cookies on our web site to enhance your online experience. Flash cookies are similar to browser cookies, except that they can store data more complex than simple text. Flash cookies, by themselves, cannot do anything to or with the data on your computer. In addition, flash cookies cannot access or remember your email address or other personal information unless you provide the information on this site. We use flash cookies to provide you with a better user experience.

Information We Share
We do not sell or otherwise disclose personal information about our web site visitors, except as described here. We may share information provided by our visitors to 15-40.org with service providers we have retained to perform services on our behalf, including but not limited to performing routine maintenance, design, web site management and public relations. In addition, we may disclose information about you (i) if we are required to do so by law or legal process, (ii) to law enforcement authorities or other government officials, or (iii) when we believe disclosure is necessary or appropriate to prevent physical harm or financial loss or in connection with an investigation of suspected or actual illegal activity.

We reserve the right to transfer any information we have about you in the event we sell or transfer all or a portion of our business or assets. Should such a sale or transfer occur, we will use reasonable efforts to direct the transferee to use personal information you have provided through this web site in a manner that is consistent with this Privacy Statement.

If you provide Financial Account Information, this information will be shared with our service providers for processing the transaction.  We will not store your Financial Account Information.

Children’s Privacy
This web site is not directed to children under the age of thirteen and we do not knowingly collect personal information from children under the age of thirteen on the site. If we become aware that we have inadvertently received personal information from a visitor under the age of thirteen on the site, we will delete the information from our records.

How We Protect Personal Information
We maintain administrative, technical and physical safeguards to protect against unauthorized disclosure, use, alteration or destruction of the personal information you provide on this web site. We use secure socket layer (SSL) technology for all transactions involving Financial Account Information and registration, including Sweepstakes and Contest Registrations to help keep the personal information you provide on this site secure.

How To Opt-Out of receiving Emails From 15-40 Connection
If you no longer wish to receive email news, announcements, requests for donations or similar email communications please email us at info@15-40.org and write, “unsubscribe” in the subject line.

Updates to Our Privacy Policy
This Privacy Statement may be updated periodically and without prior notice to you to reflect changes in our online information practices. We will post a prominent notice on this web site to notify you of any significant changes to our Privacy Statement and indicate at the top of the statement when it was most recently updated.

How To Contact Us
If you have any questions or comments about this Privacy Policy, or if you would like us to update information we have about you or your preferences, please Contact Us.

-Last Updated February 2015