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The Perfect Fit

By BCRF | December 12, 2014

Wilson Sporting Goods marries hope and breast cancer health with its BCRF partnership

Exercise and maintaining a healthy body weight play a critical role in the prevention of breast cancer. That’s why a partnership between BCRF and Wilson Sporting Goods was a natural fit. In 1998, the company joined forces with BCRF to advocate for breast cancer health and raise funds for innovative research that helps women and men reduce their risk of developing the disease.

Over the last 16 years, Wilson has donated more than $2.6 million to advance breast cancer research. The company also created the HOPE line, a collection of sporting goods for women designed exclusively for BCRF. Wilson’s efforts have funded the work of Dr. Walter Willett, one of the country’s most renowned experts on diet and disease.

We chatted with Molly Wallace, Director of Experiential Marketing at Wilson, to learn more about this long-standing partnership.

Why did Wilson decide to make breast cancer its philanthropic focus?

After designing the first female-specific tennis shoe, Wilson wanted to align with an organization dedicated to a woman’s cause that was funding research—not just overhead. In 1998, we made the partnership official by donating a portion of proceeds from the sale of all our women’s sporting goods products.

Why did BCRF choose to partner with BCRF versus other breast cancer organizations?

We sought a partner committed to funding cutting-edge research worldwide. We believe in the mission Evelyn Lauder set forth for BCRF to rid the world of breast cancer through the power of research. Her inspiration and dedication to funding the best minds in research made BCRF a natural choice.

How did the Hope line concept come about?

Wilson was an evolution of our partnership with BCRF. We wanted to create an exclusive line of tennis and gold products designed and tailored to suit a woman’s game. By supporting BCRF through sales, we were able to generate even greater consumer awareness about the importance of research.

Why offer the Hope line year-round instead of only during Breast Cancer Awareness Month?

Our commitment to BCRF is more than a single donation. We’re focused on discovering new opportunities to strengthen our relationship, continue promoting the need for innovative research among our consumers, and support BCRF in the effort to find a cure.

What’s the most rewarding part of being in the BCRF family?

We have established a true partnership over the past 16 years and we’re so grateful. We’re really proud that our donation to BCRF is funding Dr. Walter Willet. It makes us feel connected—we can follow the progress of the research we fund and truly be a part of the cure.