The UMass ALS Champion Fund has been renamed in honor of former governor Paul Cellucci, U Mass Medical School Chancellor Michael F. Collins announced Thursday.
The UMass ALS Cellucci Fund will continue to money for research at UMass Medical School (UMMS) into amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) or Lou Gehrig's disease, the illness that led to the death last year of Cellucci, who was governor from 1997 to 2001.
"While the name of the fund will change, its purpose, and our mission, will not," Collins said in a statement. "At UMass Medical School, we are dedicated to the proposition that treatments and cures for ALS will be discovered through research and we are committed to doing all we can to find answers for this most challenging disease."
Cellucci oversaw an effort that has had immediate impact on ALS research being conducted in the laboratory at UMMS.
"In establishing the initiative, Paul wanted to shine a light on UMass Medical School and the important work of Dr. Brown," said Jan Cellucci, wife of the late governer who spearheaded the naming. "He also wanted to give hope to those patients and family members struggling with ALS.
To date, the UMass ALS Cellucci Fund has raised more than $2 million.