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Making a Difference

The Sig Kohl Legacy award is granted each year to a recipient who is dedicated to making an enduring difference in the fight against Sarcoma.  

Whether it be through research, patient support, or dedication to the Sarcoma community; the recipients of this award carry on the legacy of Sig Kohl and are making a true difference in the lives of people battling Sarcoma.



Siegfried (“Sig”) Kohl was a long standing supporter of the Foundation who lost his battle with Sarcoma in 2016.  He had a strong desire to help others and was deeply passionate about helping find a cure for Sarcoma cancers.   He felt fortunate to have an amazing support system, and realized not everyone battling Sarcoma had the same.  He raised awareness, funding and was an advocate for the Foundation through every possible avenue.  


He emboldened us to pursue our cause: find a cure for Sarcoma, and support those fighting it. He extended a level of generosity that is exceedingly rare and left the Foundation a gift of $30,000 so we may continue our work. In honor of Sig Kohl, we created the Sig Kohl Legacy Award. The award will be given annually to individuals who made a lasting, enduring difference in our fight against Sarcoma.



Robert Ortblad

Robert "Bob" Ortblad is a past board member, volunteer, and consistent donor. During the pandemic when we were all shut in our homes, Bob stepped up to host a Virtual Dinner & Show about How Seattle was built. He allowed us to step virtually outside our homes via Zoom for a brief moment. He has a degree inl engineering, has taught at UW, and has a love for bridges. During our Hope Grows Here event in 2023, he was further recognized by having the Foundation Help$ Grant program named in his honor. Bob is a Sarcoma survivor and has a loving wife, two daughters, and even a few grandchildren. We are thankful he continues to support the NWSF.

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Dr. Patricia Read-Williams has been a long-standing member of the board, taking on the role of president from 2016 through 2020 and standing as past president in 2021. Patty is a Sarcoma survivor, family practitioner, mother of two beautiful daughters, a grandmother, and a wife. She is dedicated to the NW Sarcoma Foundation, her Dragonslayer team the Sole Sisters has raised thousands of dollars over the eleven-plus years she has been a part of the organization. She has been an integral part of the organization's survival throughout the years and the pandemic. 

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Elana Emlen's husband, Matt Emlen, passed away in the fall of 2019; she immediately became invested and involved with the NW Sarcoma Foundation. She met with staff to talk about ideas and programs she wanted to personally support. Number one is the care package program, Elana self-invested $1,000 to re-launch the program, promising $6,000 total between herself, friends, and family of hers and Matt's. Elan also wanted to have some sort of outlet to speak about her experience with the death of her husband to Sarcoma. Through further brainstorming, the Casual Chat group for Survivors of Sarcoma Angels, now the Bereavement group, was created and the first meeting was in December 2020. The Casual Chat program further snowballed into groups for survivors & patients, and caregivers. Elana had been volunteering her time to lead the Casual Chat group every other month, up until she took on new challenge with Dragonboat racing. Elana's 2021 Dragonslayer team was the top fundraising team in Portland, The Matt Emlen Marchers, raising $5,217. This team also appeared in force at the walk in the pouring down rain!

Elana '21 Sig Kohl award winner _ '22 gala.jpg


Knight Cancer Institute

Oregon Health & Science University’s Knight Cancer Institute has dedicated physicians and researchers supporting Sarcoma research in the Pacific Northwest. KCI researchers are leaders in their field in the Pacific Northwest. They also have an enduring commitment to fighting Sarcoma and supporting patients and families. OHSU has provided grant funding to provide direct financial relief and host community events, which has contributed to the reduction in financial toxicity and feelings of isolation.

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2019 LOGIC 20/20




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