Families for a Cure

Supports cancer research projects, patient care, and advocacy programs.It started with a partnership in 2006 when Pat Puhl and Eric Friedman met for lunch. Pat was the host of The Double Bogey Invitational (DBI), a golf tournament he planned to turn into a fundraiser.

Eric had established The MJF Fund for Cancer Research, a research fund he created in memory of his parents who both lost their battles with cancer. Eric wanted to host a charity golf outing to use as a fundraiser. After discussing the possibilities of their partnership, they agreed to co-host The DBI and raise money for cancer research.

During 2009, they realized they had built something special after raising $25,000 and selling out the golf outing and creating a “waiting list” of guests that wanted to attend. And that’s when the concept of establishing Families for a Cure was born. Eric and Pat, along with a small, motivated group of volunteers, founded Families for a Cure with the goal of uniting others impacted by the disease to raise money that will help advance cancer research and provide patient care. Our goal is to raise $1 million by 2021.


Throughout the year we create fun experiences that bring together our family of supporters to celebrate the lives of the people we know who are battling, have battled and won as well as those we’ve lost to cancer. Many of these events are fundraisers that provide the necessary funding needed to fulfill the promises we’ve made to fund cancer research and patient care programs.

As an organization, we pride ourselves on our ability to use the money raised from these events, add it to the donations and support we receive from our business sponsors, and make the money do work that alone none of the individual support received could do. That’s the power of the family!


Because the need is so big, we’ve decided to support all types of cancer projects, all patients (kids, adults, men, women, friends, family, aunt, uncles, moms, dads, brothers, sisters, co-workers — you get the point), anywhere throughout the world, although we primarily fund projects within Ohio. The grants we provide are not general use grants – anyone can give to a general use project. Rather, we give donor designated grants so that we can monitor and share the impact that our family of supporters provides.

Every year, our Board members discuss the many cancer research and patient care programs that apply for grants to determine how we can deliver the most value for the grant money we can give.

To help us narrow our decisions, we look for opportunities that fit within the following criteria:

  • Have never been funding (start-up projects)
  • Used to be funded and need funding to restart providing benefits
  • Need funding to continue (may no longer be offered if funding not provided)
  • We also have our own program, The Allison Orlando Wood Patient Experience grant that provides individuals or groups impacted by cancer with a grant to go and experience something fun to take a break from their daily reality, celebrate life and create memories. To learn more about this program or apply, visit the Experience Grant page.

Board of Directors

  • Pat Puhl, President
  • Eric Friedman, Vice President
  • Bill Bookmyer, Treasurer
  • Shannon Puhl,vSecretary
  • Michelle Thomas, Director
  • Paul Rockwell, Director
  • Brad Koniewich, Director
  • Mark Rickel, Director
  • Sean Williams, Director
  • Wes Kelsey, Director
  • Kim Orr, Director