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Dear Leo,

Congratulations to Team SCI Sucks for an outstanding performance at last Sunday's Chicago Marathon.  Check out this interview with marathoner and SCIS founder Geoff Kent.

Hats off also to Team Rodreick, who successfully completed the first ever SCIathlon in Minneapolis. That event was just the beginning of their advocacy efforts, as Matthew Rodreick is now making a movie with Chris Kluwe of the Minnesota Vikings to raise awareness for spinal cord injury. Follow Matthew's adventures on his "Get Up Stand Up" blog.

The Working 2 Walk Science & Advocacy Symposium is just a few weeks away, and we're getting excited! To date we have attendees registered from Europe, Australia, Ecuador, Costa Rica, Nepal and Japan. The thirst for knowledge about the latest advancements in research is world-wide. A few reminders on upcoming deadlines:

October 17: Last day to book your hotel room at our group rate. If you're traveling to attend the conference and have not yet booked your hotel room, don't delay. We have secured a block of rooms at the Hilton Orange County Airport at a special group rate of $119/night. This rate is available until October 17, 2012, or until the block is sold out, whichever comes first. Book now.

October 28: Last day to register online. Registrations will be accepted at the door, but we cannot guarantee meals or conference materials to late registrants. Your registration fee includes breakfast and lunch for both days of the symposium, as well as our Thursday night Networking Reception, and lunch during the RIRC lab visits. Register now.

Registration Fees are $125 for one day and $150 for the entire conference, including Saturday's visit to RIRC.  We offer a 50% student discount, and complimentary registration for personal assistants.  We still have Registration Fee grants available for those with financial need. Grant Application.

Restorative Therapies will provide free trials on the RT300 FES cycle at the conference. You will need a prescription and appropriate clothing. For more details and to book your trial, contact Theresa McKenty at 800.609.9166 ext 302. Time slots are limited.

Today's newsletter features our speakers from the advocate community. You can learn more about all of the speakers on our agenda on our Working 2 Walk Speakers page. 

Jonathan Thomas, JD, PhD, is Chairman of the Governing Board of the California Institute for Regenerative Medicine. Long interested in the biological sciences, he studied biology and history at Yale, where he graduated summa cum laude. Thomas has a long-standing commitment to patient advocacy, having spent more than 15 years on the Board of the Crippled Children's Society of Southern California, now called Ability First.

Ida Cahill, President and CEO of the Sam Schmidt Paralysis Foundation, has worked in the non-profit sector for over 15 years and been with SSPF since 2004. The Foundation is working to develop a unique funding mechanism designed to accelerate the pace of research in the field of spinal cord injury. Ida will share the latest news on this exciting project with our audience.

Roman Reed is well-known in the advocate community for his tireless efforts on behalf of the Roman Reed Spinal Cord Injury Act, a "small but mighty" piece of legislation that has provided $1.5 million in funding per year towards paralysis cure research. Unfortunately, the bill lost its funding during hard economic times, and to date has not been re-funded. Roman will talk about his work in the legislative arena as well as other projects of the Roman Reed Foundation.

Bob Yant has been a quadriplegic since a 1981 diving accident. Since that time Bob has largely devoted his time to raising money for spinal cord injury regeneration research. In 2008 he founded Cure Medical, a medical supply manufacturing comany that donates 10% of its net profits to research. Since he began his fundraising efforts, Bob has raised over $10 million for regeneration research. Bob will serve as the first chairman of U2FP's Advocate Research Committee.

Dennis Tesolat will join us via video presentation from his home in Osaka, Japan, where he has lived for the past 17 years working as a teacher and general secretary of his labor union. He was injured in 2009 after an AVM ruptured in his spinal cord at the T-11 level. He started a blog called "Stem Cells and Atom Bombs" with the goal of building an international group of activists that will fight for a cure for paralysis.

We are so grateful to our generous sponsors who support the Working 2 Walk Science & Advocacy Symposium.  Thanks to their contributions, we are able to offer one of the finest conferences in the SCI community at an affordable cost, and to provide grants to personal assistants and those with financial need. Please click on the links to the right to visit the websites of these outstanding organizations.

We hope that many of you will be able to join us for the tour at the Reeve-Irvine Research Center on Saturday morning.  It's a great opportunity to see what goes on behind the scenes at one of the leading SCI research laboratories in the U.S. The staff from RIRC will be on hand to guide us and answer questions. There is no extra charge to take the tour, but you must sign up when you register for the Working 2 Walk Symposium. Lunch is included.

Questions about Working 2 Walk should be directed to Marilyn Smith, marilynsmith@u2fp.org

We look forward to seeing many of you in Irvine.  This year's Symposium promises to be a dynamic event and extraordinary networking opportunity. 


Your friends at Unite 2 Fight Paralysis

Unite 2 Fight Paralysis     5640 Alder Rd     Hood River OR 97031     u2fp.org


7th Annual
Working 2 Walk
Science & Advocacy Symposium

November 1-3, 2012
Irvine, California



Craig Hospital

Chicago Review Press

Better Life Mobility


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