WOKC is a Dallas-based, non-profit organization dedicated to raising awareness & funding pediatric cancer research nation-wide.

About Us

Wipe Out Kids’ Cancer (WOKC) was founded in 1980 and has raised over $5.5 million in the crusade against pediatric cancer and spent over 38 years developing programs to not only fight childhood cancer, but to also provide hope and support to kids and families dealing with cancer. WOKC provides critical funding to key research initiatives on a national basis. 

Our Goal

Our Goal is to find a cure through research.  Children are fighting valiantly every day to survive cancer and their only hope of a cure is through more research. The survival rate for some childhood cancers has increased to almost 80%, but others have a less than 50% cure rate.

Our Mission

Our mission is simple:  Work relentlessly for the day when all children are living cancer free.

At WOKC, we will not halt our efforts until all children are free from the threat of cancer.

Our History

In 1980, Cindy Brinker Simmons organized A Weekend at Willow Bend to Wipe Out Cancer. A bake sale, t-shirt sale, a tennis and swim marathon, and horse show raised $6,000 for the Collin County American Cancer Society.

36 years and over $5.5 million later our mission is simple: work relentlessly for the day when children are living cancer free.

1980s
1983
1985
1987
1990s
1998
2000s
2003
2004
2006
2008
2010
2011
2014
2015
2016
2017
2018

1980s

Funded various research projects: why cancer recurs in some children and not in others, brain tumor research and the study of genes in childhood cancer

1983

Incorporated as a non-profit organization to fund pediatric research. The first project focused on acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) , then the most common disease killer of children under 18; these early studies on ALL helped pave the way for Children’s Medical Center Dallas to have worldwide prominence in this area of study

1985

Launched the annual Tom Thumb Run for the Children and Oktoberfest 5K in Addison.

1987

Launched the Ambassador program, providing fun monthly events to pediatric cancer patients and their families.

1990s

Initially funded the “After the Care Experience” program at Children’s, one of the first programs in the world to offer a continuum of follow-up care to cancer patients and monitor the late effects of cancer and its treatment; also funded studies in supportive cancer care, leukemia and brain tumors.

1998

Rebranded the organization with a new name, Wipe Out Kids’ Cancer (WOKC).

2000s

Funded research in bone tumors, leukemia and neuroblastoma.

2003

Established a Visiting Professor Endowment Fund for hematology/oncology; launched the annual WOKC Golf Classic.

2004

Attracted the generous, ongoing support of Texas Ranger Michael Young and his wife Cristina; furnished equipment to the new outpatient physical therapy room at Children’s; also began annually funding a Spanish Translator position for the Center for Cancer and Blood Disorders.

2006

Began awarding annual scholarships to pediatric cancer survivors graduating from high school through the Young Heroes Scholarship program in honor of Michael Young.

2008

Launched the Buddy Bag program, which provides cancer patients and their families a rolling bag full of necessities when admitted to the hospital.

2010

Expanded WOKC funding outside of Dallas with first grants totaling $125,000 to Cook Children’s in Fort Worth.

2011

Expanded Buddy Bag program to Cook Children’s on June 1st

2014

Expanded the Ambassador program to Cook Children’s with 18 families in the first class and expanded the Buddy Bag program to Medical City Children’s.

2015

Funded research grants in the amount of $500,000 (largest to date) to 5 hospitals in 4 states honoring 2 past Ambassadors.

2016

Expanded our Ambassador Program to include Medical City Children’s.

2017

Hired a new experienced CEO to further grow the organization.

2018

Established the Ambassador youth Advisory Council with the first Founding Member, Luke Laufenberg, and hit $1M in total contributions from Jersey Mike’s.

Our People

Board Officers

  • Gavin Worthy, Chairman
  • Kevin Shtofman, Vice Chair
  • Alisa Rich, PhD., Secretary
  • Todd Westerburg, Treasurer
  • Linda Randall, Member at Large

Board Members

  • Cindy Brinker Simmons
  • Derek Martin
  • John Dankovchik
  • Stefan Noe
  • Steven St. John

Founding Chair Emeritus

  • Cindy Brinker Simmons