September 7, 2022
The New York Jets 2022 football season kicked off last week with a spectacular luncheon that raised $740,000 for the Lupus Research Alliance and the New York Jets Foundation. The event also honored our former President and CEO Kenneth Farber for his years of commitment and progress in lupus research. Continuing as President-Emeritus through year-end, Ken will remain a consultant to the organization. The event was also a great opportunity to introduce our new LRA President and CEO Albert Roy to the Jets family.
Former Super Bowl Champion, sports radio personality, LRA Board member and Luncheon Honorary Co-Chair Willie Colon presented an official Jets “Farber #22 jersey to Ken, thanking him for his 22 years of involvement with the Jets luncheon. “With a deep conviction that cutting-edge research holds the answers to curing this disease, Ken helped form the Alliance for Lupus Research in 1999 and led its merger with two other leading organizations to form the Lupus Research Alliance in 2016.”
Reflecting on his years of working closely with Ken, Willie recalled, “Ken always asked how my mother and my family were doing first – never anything about what was happening with the JETS – always family first. That really struck me as special.”
In accepting this most meaningful tribute from Willie, Ken commented, “We are single-minded, focused like a laser beam on the cause, treatment and prevention of lupus, and we WILL find a cure.” Recognizing the Jets coaches and players also honored at this event, Ken continued, “It may not seem like football and lupus have much in common. But both need leadership, talent and tenacity. The Jets inspire us to work harder, smarter and with more determination.”
LRA Co-Founder and New York Jets Chairman Robert Wood Johnson (Woody) and Jets Vice Chairman Christopher W. Johnson co-chaired the kickoff along with Jerry Jacobs, Owner, Chairman and Governor of the Boston Bruins, as well as his son alternate Governor and CEO of Delaware North Jerry Jacobs, Jr.
Yet another huge success, the 2022 Jets Kickoff Luncheon brings the total raised by this annual event to nearly $7 million for lupus research!
In his remarks, Ken thanked Woody and Christopher Johnson for their unparalleled contributions representing “the first family of philanthropy.” “And no one on the planet did more for lupus research than your mom, Betty Johnson, who we think of every day.”