The Simms/Mann – UCLA Center for Integrative Oncology has received a gift of $200,000 from Darcie Denkert Notkin and Shelby Notkin, longtime supporters of the center and its commitment to enhancing the physical, psychological and spiritual well-being of people touched by cancer. 

The philanthropists originally offered a Matching Challenge Grant of up to $150,000 for contributions by new and previous donors, then increased their gift to $200,000 when the center succeeeded in raising more than $225,000, for a gift total of $425,000.

Darcie Denkert Notkin has served on the center’s advisory board for the past two years. She learned about the center and its work through her own breast cancer diagnosis over five years ago. She has had a successful career in the entertainment industry, from her start as a theatrical lawyer in Broadway and off-Broadway productions to senior positions at MGM, United Artists and Embassy Pictures. She currently serves as a director of The Motion Picture and Television Fund."We are so deeply grateful to Darcie and Shelby, who are two truly remarkable individuals with a great deal of heart,” said center director Anne Coscarelli, a clinical psychologist and faculty member of UCLA's Department of Psychology and the Division of Hematology/Oncology at the UCLA David Geffen School of Medicine. 

Darcie Denkert Notkin and Shelby Notkin

Shelby Notkin is familiar with cancer too, having lost his first wife to breast cancer 14 years ago. He has had a long and successful career in the financial world, recently retiring as chairman of the Capital Group’s Private Client Services Division. He is the founder and chairman of the Notkin Family Breast Cancer Recovery Program at the California Pacific Medical Center in San Francisco and serves as a board member for several organizations, including the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

The Simms/Mann – UCLA Center, which is part of the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center and UCLA Oncology, was designed to help patients and family members optimize their wellness and address the challenges throughout the continuum of cancer care.

“The leadership of the center recognized a crucial unmet need in the cancer community – complete patient-centered care including psychological support,” the philanthropists said. “The caring of patients and their families is heartfelt and the quality of the leadership and staff, and the work they do, is extraordinary.”

This story has been excerpted from Partnership of Generosity and Gratitude on the Simms/Mann-UCLA Center for Integrative Oncology website.