The United States Mint released the second and final commemorative coin for 2018 on March 15. Acting Deputy Director David Croft joined Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY), Senator Heidi Heitkamp (D-ND), Congressman Pete Sessions (R-TX), Breast Cancer Research Foundation (BCRF) President Myra Biblowit, and Breast Cancer Survivor Melissa to celebrate the launch of the Breast Cancer Awareness Commemorative Coin program at the U.S. Capitol. Honored guests included United States Treasurer Jovita Carranza.
Commemorative coins issued by the U.S. Mint help raise money for important causes, as part of the price of each coin is a surcharge that goes to organizations and projects that benefit the community. Surcharges from this program are authorized to be paid to the Breast Cancer Research Foundation to further its efforts in breast cancer research. The authorizing legislation for this program required the addition of copper to the gold coins, which gives the coins a pink hue – a first in the Mint’s 225 year history. The bipartisan Breast Cancer Awareness Commemorative Coin Act (H.R. 2722) to create the commemorative coin program was introduced by Reps. Maloney and Sessions in the House and Sen. Heitkamp and ret. Sen. Kelly Ayotte (R-NH) in the Senate.
“This has been a very special project for me from the start. One in 8 women in the U.S. will be diagnosed with breast cancer, and it is the second leading cause of death in women. It’s virtually impossible to find someone who has not been affected by breast cancer in some way,” said Rep. Maloney. “But through research, we have been able to increase survival rates; death rates have dropped over 38 percent in the last 25 years – but we need more funding to continue this life-saving work. This Commemorative Coin Program that launches today is a creative solution to that problem. Not only will sales of these coins help spread awareness, they also have the potential to raise up to $8 million in private funds for breast cancer research without any cost to taxpayers. This coin program takes us another step closer to finding a cure.”
“As a survivor of breast cancer, I know personally how critical it is that we raise awareness about this disease. Breast cancer impacts millions of women and families across this country,” said Senator Heitkamp. “It’s an honor to join my colleagues and the Breast Cancer Research Foundation today to launch the commemorative coin. Through efforts like this one and so many others across the country, we can work to stop breast cancer while honoring the many courageous women fighting this disease, those who have overcome it, those we have lost, and the families and friends impacted.”
“In my home state of Texas there will be more than 17,000 new breast cancer cases that will claim the lives of more than 3,000 women and men. These heartbreaking statistics underscore the importance of furthering research and learning more about how we can detect, prevent, and defeat this disease,” said Rep. Sessions. “For the past two years I have been proud to join my friends and colleagues in leading this effort to generate funds for breast cancer research. For more than 20 years the Breast Cancer Research Foundation has raised awareness and provided resources for innovative research that have made tremendous strides in how we tackle this disease. I am honored to be a part of this initiative and hopeful that through the proceeds of this coin we can come one step closer to putting an end to breast cancer.”
“Breast cancer is one of the most urgent public health issues of our time. More than 40,000 women and men across the U.S. die from the disease each year,” said Myra Biblowit, BCRF President. “But progress is possible—BCRF investigators have been involved in every major breakthrough in breast cancer research since 1993. We will eradicate breast cancer and support from the Commemorative Coin program will help us achieve our mission even faster.”
“Every day, across the Nation, the Mint connects Americans through coins, and it is our great privilege to connect America to a powerful message of hope and perseverance in the face of such a devastating disease,” said Acting Deputy Director Croft.
“Investing in research is the only path to ending this disease. Research focused on how young breast cancer patients should be treated, funded by BCRF, helped to determine which treatments I should receive when I was first diagnosed at age 27,” said Melissa Miller. “I am so thankful to BCRF for being so vigilant and dedicated to raising money for breast cancer research and for giving me the opportunity to represent all young breast cancer patients and survivors today. I am also so grateful to Representative Maloney, Representative Sessions and Senator Heitkamp for their sponsorship of this legislation and to the U.S. Mint for developing these beautiful coins.”
As directed by Congress, the U.S. Mint will produce up to 50,000 gold coins, 400,000 silver coins and 750,000 clad coins. Available in both proof and uncirculated versions, these commemorative coins can be purchased here.
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