BRI Scientists Inspire Staff Member to Donate
When Rachel Martin goes to work, she’s enveloped in a world of medical research. She sees the scientists at Benaroya Research Institute at Virginia Mason (BRI) use their expertise to fight autoimmune diseases like type 1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis, Crohn’s disease and allergies. As a communications and community outreach specialist for BRI, she also talks daily with people who struggle with these chronic, life-long diseases.
Her experiences have led her to generously donate to BRI for the seven years she has worked there. “Every day, I see our passionate researchers look for the causes and cures for these diseases and I’m inspired to support them,” she says. “When I talk to people with these diseases, I want to do my little bit to move this research forward quickly.”
Many Ways of Support
Rachel also supports research by participating in the Healthy Volunteer Biorepository. “By providing blood samples and a health history, I can help scientists study how a healthy immune system works in comparison to one that has disease,” she notes. “The biorepository team is so friendly, they make it easy and enjoyable.” As a part of her work, she helps with community events such as the Boeing Classic, which benefits BRI, and BRI’s Illuminations Luncheon. She encourages others to become involved.
“I’ve learned that government and foundation grants fund only a part of the cost of research,” she explains. “To bring on new researchers, start pilot projects and invest in the latest technology, we need additional funding. I’ve seen the great research breakthroughs that are made in part because of our donors. I want to be part of that and lead by example.”