Musician and Philanthropist Julian Lennon to Elevate the Global Profile of Lupus
Musician and philanthropist Julian Lennon has been named Global Ambassador by the Lupus Foundation of America’s (LFA) National Board of Directors. The role of the Global Ambassador is to elevate lupus on the world’s health agenda, and increase awareness of the needs of the more than 5 million people living with lupus and their families around the world.
As Global Ambassador, Lennon will support public awareness initiatives to observe World Lupus Day on May 10 and Lupus Awareness Month throughout May. Lennon will also help to raise funds for lupus research, including the Lucy Vodden Research Grant Award, which was established last year by the LFA and Julian Lennon. The grant is named in memory of Lucy Vodden, Lennon’s childhood friend, who lost her battle with lupus in 2009 at the age of 46. Lucy was the subject of a drawing Lennon created which inspired his father, John, to write the classic Beatles song, “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds.”
“I am thrilled to take on this role in honor and tribute to my friend Lucy,” said Lennon. “I look forward to working with the LFA on behalf of all individuals living with lupus around the world.”
Lennon has been a long-time supporter of raising awareness and funds for lupus research. In 2009, he and musician James Scott Cook released the song “Lucy” in honor of Vodden. Proceeds from the song benefited the LFA and the St. Thomas’ Lupus Trust in London. Lennon was also recognized for his support with the Butterfly of Hope Award during the LFA’s inaugural New York City Butterfly Gala last year.
“Julian Lennon’s efforts will go a long way to draw global attention and resources to lupus, a disease which remains under-recognized and under-appreciated,” said Sandra C. Raymond, President and CEO, Lupus Foundation of America. “We also look forward to continued collaboration with the entire global lupus community to expand efforts to raise awareness of this disease.”
Photo courtesy: Paul Harmer