When Super Bowl Advertising Gets a Bit Personal

Sunday’s Super Bowl was great. I know the score was a blow out but it was the first time the Seahawks have won a Super Bowl and I’m from the Northwest so consider it my team. Many of us were watching the advertising as much as we were watching the game. And you can say what you will about the advertising, and the brand tweets.

But for some of us, it was personal. Take my friend, Jenny Gore Dwyer. I met Jenny in 2010 when I volunteered full-time on her cousin’s, Lisa Murkowski, write in campaign. Jenny is one of the many terrific members of Lisa’s family with whom I quickly became friends.

Jenny’s late husband Pat couldn’t join us in the campaign offices because he was suffering from ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. Not much seemed to stop Pat and this was no different. If we needed research, he was ready, willing, quick and very adept and finding the answers to almost any query.

Since the campaign ended, I watched the Dwyers’ commitment to finding a cure for ALS. Even as Pat’s condition deteriorated, Jenny’s commitment to him, and to finding a cure for this horrible disease remains constant. I’ve watched her journey and admired her commitment and love for her family. Sadly, Pat passed away 7 months ago but he continues to inspire Jenny to keep working to find a treatment.

She serves on the board of directors for the ALS Therapy Development Institute (ALS TDI) as she believes their work is most likely to find a cure. She’s especially interested in the organization’s IPS technology which is quickly moving forward toward finding a cure. Pat always enjoyed this group’s “out of the box thinking.”

Microsoft ran its first ever Super Bowl ad during Sunday’s game. It featured Steve Gleason, former New Orleans Saints player who also suffers from ALS. For many it was another of Microsoft’s “empowering” ads, showing how their technology helps those with disabilities. For those suffering from ALS and their families, it’s a chance to increase awareness of this horrible disease and the need for a cure.

Jenny asked her friends to help get the word out to my network so I joined thousands on Twitter and Facebook Sunday, and here on my blog today. Now I’m asking my friends to help as well.

Please do what you can to raise awareness and support the research to find a cure for this horrendous disease. Donate!

Oh, and thanks to Microsoft for the shout out to Jenny. She loved it. We hear her loud and proud too.

Whenever I talk with Jenny, I ask myself, what would I devote my life to that is important? What can I do to help others? Ask yourself the same questions, commit to it, and you will make a difference in this world too.

The Barber Group

Gig Harbor, Washington


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