Illinois Receives Top State Advocacy Team Award for Outstanding Efforts in Cancer Advocacy

American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) Award Honors Staff and Volunteer Team with National Recognition for Cancer Advocacy Work

September 9, 2019

Springfield, IL  – A team of advocates and staff in Illinois was recognized by the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) for their dedication and exceptional work in cancer advocacy.

ACS CAN, the advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, presents the State Advocacy Team of the Year award annually to staff and volunteer teams that have successfully collaborated to advance in their communities.

“We are honored to recognize the Illinois advocacy team for its work to make cancer a public policy priority in Illinois and across the country,” said Lisa Lacasse, president of ACS CAN. “This team is an extraordinary example of what can be accomplished when dedicated advocates collaborate to improve public health and impact the cancer burden in their community. As a result of their tireless efforts, Illinois has made significant strides in the fight against this terrible disease.”

The ACS CAN Illinois team was recognized for its success in advancing significant tobacco control legislation in 2019. After a two-year campaign led by the ACS CAN Illinois team, Illinois became the first Midwestern state to raise the legal age of sale of tobacco products to 21. Illinois advocates also collaborated other public health partners to support a $1-per-pack tax increase on cigarettes, legislation that is estimated to prevent 28,700 kids from initiating smoking.

The award was presented to the team on Sept. 8 in Washington, D.C., as part of the annual ACS CAN Leadership Summit and Lobby Day. Nearly 700 cancer patients, survivors and their loved ones traveled to the nation’s capital to meet with their elected officials and urge them to make cancer a national priority.



The American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network (ACS CAN) is making cancer a top priority for public officials and candidates at the federal, state and local levels. ACS CAN empowers advocates across the country to make their voices heard and influence evidence-based public policy change as well as legislative and regulatory solutions that will reduce the cancer burden. As the American Cancer Society’s nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate, ACS CAN is critical to the fight for a world without cancer. For more information, visit

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Michelle Zimmerman
Senior Regional Media Advocacy Manager