When Joanne Chertok was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) 20 years ago, she turned to the care of Howard L. Weiner, MD, a world-renowned MS practitioner and researcher who founded the Partners MS Center at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
As Joanne became more involved with BWH, her interest in MS research grew, and so did her desire to support the work. The longtime investment advisor knew she could maximize her giving with a contribution through her retirement account. Sixteen years ago at age 45, she started an Individual Retirement Account and named BWH as the sole beneficiary.
Joanne, now 61, is beyond thrilled. “I want to see the best care for everyone,” she says. “By naming the Brigham as a beneficiary of her retirement account, I want to help researchers make discoveries that will lead to cures for some of the toughest diseases.”
Her gift—designated to support Weiner’s work—will aid MS research as well as investigations into neurologic diseases including Alzheimer’s and ALS, which took her grandmother’s life. “This is really important to me,” she says. “It’s amazing to see the incredible work Dr. Weiner and his lab are doing and where it is headed.”
By making this gift, Joanne became a member BWH’s Legacy Society, which acknowledges all donors who include the hospital in their estate plans. “I was honored to be welcomed as part of the Legacy Society and the Brigham family right away,” she says. “They have made me feel valued and appreciated.”
Joanne is also honored to contribute to BWH in other ways, and volunteers her time as a board member for the Foundation for Neurologic Diseases, which fuels Weiner’s research.
“It means a lot to me to help an institution that has been such a big part of my life and the lives of many others,” she says. “I get so much in return from helping other people.”