Wrapping up 2013

“The funds provided by Tracy’s Kids have made a significant difference in the lives of so many of the families who have a child or teen with cancer and within the cancer community as a whole.”

-James Zabora, Director, Life with Cancer


2013 was another successful year for Tracy’s Kids and we celebrated with our annual art show at the Carroll Square Gallery in downtown Washington, DC, which runs through January 24.

Below are some examples of the art being showcased, as well as information about the gallery. If you have the opportunity to stop by, we promise you won’t be disappointed.


This year we were inspired by our friend and fellow artist Kari Kant and her use of the American Flag in her pieces. We took this idea and created our own American flags earlier in the year that were showcased at her June art opening. The kids continued this idea and expanded to creating more art based around the Washington, DC landscape, and created a number of pieces with this theme. These will also be shown at our ninth annual And the Winner Is fundraiser on February 25, 2014.

CS13-CNMC DCCS13-Pentagon









The DC artwork is not the only feature of our 2013 Carroll Square show. Below you will find some additional examples of the amazing artwork done by Tracy’s Kids artists over the last year. Remember, this is just a small taste of all that is on display, so be sure to stop by the gallery. You don’t want to miss it!



Carroll Square Gallery

975 F Street NW, Washington, DC 20004


Monday-Friday, 8:00AM-6:00PM



CS13-Self Portrait

CS13-Feet CS13-Wall of Art

The Ninth Annual “And the Winner Is…” Event!

The ninth annual “And the Winner Is…” event will be on Tuesday, February 25, 2014!

The format for the event this February will remain unchanged from previous years – as we are proud to host one of Washington’s most unique and anticipated fundraisers with no dinner or lengthy speechifying – just a reception and then the chance to watch one of the six nominated and award-winning films that we screen that night.

That evening we will also present our annual Courage Award to a public person who exemplifies the strength, dignity and perseverance necessary to face the daily challenges imposed by cancer and its treatment.  The recipient this year will be Senator Heidi Heitkamp of North Dakota.  The Senator is a determined advocate for breast cancer detection and prevention.  She unabashedly tells her own story — from discovery to mastectomy to remission – with characteristic candor and good humor.
 The past recipients of the award are Arlen Specter, Marcelle Leahy, Barbara and Tim Johnson, John McCain, Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Sue Myrick, Barbara Grassley and Dave Camp.

If you would like to purchase tickets, have any questions, or are interested in learning more, please contact Susan O’Neill & Associates at 301-229-0124 or TracysKids@ONeillEvent.com.

To purchase tickets with a  credit card, please visit our Click and Pledge website!

We are looking forward to another great year and hope to see everyone on Tuesday, February 25, 2014!


TK14EVENT-STD 2All proceeds from the evening support the Tracy’s Kids pediatric art therapy programs that help young cancer patients cope with the emotional stress and trauma surrounding cancer and its treatment — all provided free of charge to the patients and families we serve.  Thanks to your help over the years, we have an unequaled presence throughout the DC metropolitan area as well at Methodist Children’s Hospital in San Antonio, Texas.

Dr. Aziza Shad on Tracy’s Kids

“It is not unusual to walk into our clinic at Georgetown and see children with infusions in their arms, crayons in their hands, and smiles on their faces.  That uncanny juxtaposition is inspiring and contagious — and it is all thanks to the art therapy provided by Tracy’s Kids.”

Aziza Shad, MD
Director, Division of Pediatric Hematology/Oncology

Lombardi Cancer Center

Medstar Georgetown University Hospital

Earlier this month MedStar Georgetown University Hospital gave Tracy and Matt an award for our work on behalf of the children treated at its Lombardi Cancer Center. In making the presentation, Dr. Aziza Shad described Tracy’s Kids as the heart and soul of the clinic. She explained that when she interviewed at Lombardi, the very first thing she saw were children sitting at an art table receiving their infusions “with smiles on their faces and crayons in their hands.”  She thanked us for the over $1million that we have given to the pediatric clinic over the past fifteen years — but that thanks should be extended to our donors and supporters. It is because of all the generous donations that Tracy’s Kids is able to help address the emotional toll that cancer and its treatment impose on the children and families that we serve. On behalf of Tracy, Matt and the entire Tracy’s Kids team, we would like to thank our supporters for all that they have given and continue to give to this wonderful program.




Tracy’s Kids San Antonio News!

A San Antonio TV station recently ran a segment about our work at Methodist Children’s.

In two minutes and thirty seconds, it captures the essence of what we do for children with cancer.

Kathleen, the featured art therapist, explains, “the children we work with don’t have choices about getting medicine, they don’t get choices about when they go to get treatment.  But when they come to the playroom, everything is up to them.  They get to make what they want, they get to use what they want, they get to decide whether they even want to do it or not…”  “[Tracy’s Kids] gives them a way to express themselves without having to talk and a lot of times these kids don’t want to talk about [their feelings.] They are either not ready, or it is just too hard to find the words — especially for younger kids.  But they can put all their feelings into the art work.” One little girl in the clinic confides that the art projects “make her not want to think about everything she is going through” — and one day she wants to be an Art Therapist so she can help other kids like her. [Her ambition is not really far fetched — as a handful of our former patients have done just that.]  One of the experienced nurses enthusiastically relates how Tracy’s Kids “decreases fear through color and drawing and gluing.  We love it.  Literally it has changed our lives.”

Tracy’s Kids 2012 Annual Report

The 2012 Annual Report is now available!


Tracy’s Kids participant at Life With Cancer

Included in the 2012 Annual Report are updates and photos from each of our five programs as well as financial information for the 2012 fiscal year.

The Art Room at CNMC

The Art Room at CNMCYou can access the

 You can access the report in the lower left hand corner of the homepage of our website or by clicking here.


Kathleen Sutter and one of the Tracy’s Kids participants in the art room at MCH-San Antonio

 We are proud of the work done in 2012 and excited about all the new things happening this year for Tracy’s Kids!

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The entrance to Lombardi Cancer Center at Georgetown University Hospital features Tracy’s Kids artwork all year long.

Abstraction, by Kari Kant

Kari Kant front Kari Kant back

A local artist, Kari Kant, will be showing her new abstract paintings in the Rooftop Terrace of the Newseum Building on June 6. She chose Tracy’s Kids as a charitable partner–a portion of her sales will be donated to Tracy’s Kids!

One of Ms. Kant’s motifs is the American Flag, creatively abstracted, so each Tracy’s Kids location is hard at work creatting a group piece of art on the Flag theme to be included in the show. Patients, families and friends of Tracy’s Kids are welcome to attend the Thursday evening event, but please let us know if you plan to attend so we can put your name on the list.

Art Therapy on the BBC!

We were delighted to be part of a story by the BBC about the field of art therapy. The story tries to get at how and why art therapy works. It features interviews with art therapists Donna Betts and Heidi Bardot, as well as students from GWU’s Art Therapy program and some great footage of our own Kate Martin working with some of our wonderful kids.

Here’s the link: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-21579762

 BBC News Magazine

Click here to find out more!

The Power of Art: Can creativity cure the sick?

 25 February 2013 Last updated at 21:03 ET
Can unleashing inner creativity heal the sick?

Nine-year-old leukaemia patient Ryan is in no doubt. “It makes you feel like you can do anything really,” he says of the art therapy classes he enjoys, thanks to a US charity.

The American military has also long embraced art therapy, using it as a core treatment to help veterans recover from post-traumatic stress disorder.

Now top brass are leading research to find out why this kind of treatment works.

As Jane O’Brien reports in the second part of our Power of Art series, mounting clinical evidence of art’s medical benefits could bring new and exciting ways to harness its power.

The 2013 “And The Winner Is” Event


First of all, we would like to say THANK YOU to everyone who came out to support Tracy’s Kids last Wednesday night, February 13, 2013. It was an amazing night spent celebrating Tracy’s Kids on the red carpet and at the movies.


To everyone who came to the event and who donated to support Tracy’s Kids for another year: thank you. We would be nothing without you.

Congressman Ted Deutch of Florida, Tracy's Kids participant Devon Tatlow, Tracy's Kids Founder and Chairman Matt Gerson, Tracy's Kids Board Member Melissa Maxfield and David Cohen of Comcast/NBCUniversal

Congressman Ted Deutch of Florida, Tracy’s Kids participant Devan Tatlow, Tracy’s Kids Founder and Chairman Matt Gerson, Tracy’s Kids Board Member Melissa Maxfield and David Cohen of Comcast/NBCUniversal

We would like to specifically thank the following people and organizations for their help in making this year’s event such a success:

  • Carly Glazier Photography  – this year we were lucky enough to have the talented Carly Glazier behind the camera.  Carly donated her time and talent to Tracy’s Kids and she captured the moments in the photographs that you will see on this site as well as on our Facebook page. Thank you, Carly.
  • The Studios – every year we are lucky enough to screen award winning films donated by the studios, which make our Hollywood experience complete.
  • Comcast/NBCUniversal – thank you for your generous support of Tracy’s Kids every year. We were lucky enough to have Comcast/NBCUniversal underwriting the event, which guarantees that all donations we received will go directly to supporting our programs.
  • Susan O’Neill and Associates – for the wonderful work you all do for us every year that helps make our movie event so unforgettable. We couldn’t do it without you.
  • And most importantly, to all of our contributors – THANK YOU! Without your support, none of this would be possible. Thank you, thank you.
David Cohen and Melissa Maxfield of Comcast/NBCUniversal

David Cohen and Melissa Maxfield of Comcast/NBCUniversal

At the event we premiered the “Keep Your Head Up” music video produced by and starring some of the participants of Tracy’s Kids! Two of the film’s stars, Devan and Sophie, were at the event and were able to share the excitement of the music video’s premiere.

Devon and his dolphin Big Head

Devan and his dolphin Big Head










The crowd loved the video—and we know you will too. Check it out on our YouTube Channel–and while you’re there, Subscribe to us!



Matt Gerson and Devon watch the video on stage at the 2013 "And the Winner Is" event

Matt Gerson and Devan watch the video on stage at the 2013 “And the Winner Is” event

We were lucky enough to be joined by many Members of Congress. Our guests included Senator Ben Cardin (D-MD), Senator Robert Casey (D-PA), Congressman Ted Deutch (D-FL), Congressman Sean Duffy (R-WI), Congressman Gene Green (D-TX), Congressman Bill Johnson (R-OH), Congressman Bob Latta (R-OH), Senator Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Congressman Jim McGovern (D-MA), Congressman Jeff Miller (R-FL), Congressman Mike Pompeo (R-KS), Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), Congressman Adam Schiff (D-CA), Congressman Mac Thornberry (R-TX), Congressman Fred Upton (R-MI), Congressman Greg Walden (R-OR), past Courage Award Recipient Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL), Congressman Mel Watt (D-NC), Congressman Peter Welch (D-VT), Senator Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI) and the 2013 Courage Award Winner Congressman Dave Camp (R-MI).

Congressman Mike Pompeo and his wife Susan at the 2013 Tracy's Kids Fundraiser

Congressman Mike Pompeo and his wife Susan at the 2013 Tracy’s Kids Fundraiser

Senator Patrick Leahy, Matt Gerson and Marcelle Leahy

Senator Patrick Leahy, Matt Gerson and Marcelle Leahy

Congressman Ted Deutch, Senator Jack Reed, Congressman Sean Duffy, Congressman Dave Camp, and Congressman Mac Thornberry

Congressman Ted Deutch, Congressman Bob Latta, Congressman Sean Duffy, Congressman Dave Camp, and Congressman Mac Thornberry

During the event we presented Congressman Dave Camp with the Courage Award for the perseverance and bravery he has shown in his personal fight against cancer. We also learned that Congressman Camp is in remission—and we were thrilled to celebrate with him.

Congressman Dave Camp accepts the Tracy's Kids Courage Award

Congressman Dave Camp accepts the Tracy’s Kids Courage Award

Past Courage Award recipients were present at the event including our 2010 honoree, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, and Marcelle Leahy, our Courage Award winner in 2007 and current member of the Tracy’s Kids Board.

David Cohen of Comcast/NBCUniversal, Marcelle Leahy, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Congressman Dave Camp and Matt Gerson

David Cohen of Comcast/NBCUniversal, Marcelle Leahy, Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz, Congressman Dave Camp and Matt Gerson

Here’s a quick roundup of the event, for those of you who were unable to join us.  After Matt Gerson welcomed everyone and spoke briefly about his own fight with cancer and his continued dedication to the Tracy’s Kids cause, Tracy Councill introduced the music video. Marcelle Leahy then spoke about the importance of the Tracy’s Kids program and introduced David Cohen from Comcast/NBCUniversal. David then presented Congressman Dave Camp with the Courage Award and announced the great news that Congressman Camp is in remission. After Congressman Camp gave an acceptance speech, Melissa Maxfield of Comcast/NBCUniversal—with the help of Devan and Sophie—drew the raffle winner and announced the movie theaters where each of the seven movies would be screened. Our guests then made their way upstairs to the theaters to enjoy popcorn and the movie of their choice.

Comcast/NBCUniversal's Melissa Maxfield announces the raffle winner as Sophie and Devon help with the drawing

Comcast/NBCUniversal’s Melissa Maxfield announces the raffle winner as Sophie and Devan help with the drawing

As a reminder, the movies we showed were:

  •  Argo — Critics’ Choice Awards for Best Picture and Best Director.  Courtesy of Time Warner.
  • Silver Linings Playbook — National Board of Review awards for Best Actor and Best Screenplay.  Courtesy of The Weinstein Company.
  • Les Misérables — Golden Globe Awards for Best Picture (musical or comedy), Best Actor and Best Supporting Actress.  Courtesy of Comcast NBC Universal.
  • Zero Dark Thirty — Awarded Best Picture by the Washington, DC, New York City, Chicago and Boston Film Critics’ Associations.  Courtesy of Sony Pictures Entertainment.
  • Beasts of the Southern Wild — Winner of Camera d’Or at Cannes Film Festival.  Courtesy of News Corp.
  • Flight — Writers’ Guild of America Award for Best Original Screenplay.   Courtesy of Viacom.
  • Lincoln — Nominated for twelve Academy Award including best director, best actor, and best picture.  Courtesy of Dreamworks Studios and Walt Disney Studios.

Tracy’s Kids Art Therapists Jean McCaw, Catherine Rubin, Elizabeth Burks, and Tracy Councill stand with Tracy’s Kids Board Member and past Courage Award Recipient Marcelle Leahy and Senator Patrick Leahy during the 2013 Program

 It was another great year of “And the Winner Is” – we look forward to seeing you all next year!

Until then, keep up with Tracy’s Kids by liking us on Facebook, following us on Pinterest, and keeping up with us here on our website!

Don’t forget, it’s easy to donate to Tracy’s Kids! 

Matt Gerson, Congressman Greg Walden, Andrea Mitchell of NBC News, and Congressman Fred Upton

Matt Gerson, Congressman Greg Walden, Andrea Mitchell of NBC News, and Congressman Fred Upton

Head over to the Gallery or our Facebook where you can see all of the photos from the event!

Tracy’s Kids Chairman

Learn more about Tracy’s Kids founder and Chairman,

Matt Gerson

and his personal reasons for championing this great program, click this link.





 In 2007 Matt was recognized as a Washingtonian of the year by Washingtonian Magazine as a result of his work with Tracy’s Kids. Under his leadership, Tracy’s Kids has grown from one therapist, our wonderful Tracy Councill at Georgetown University Hospital’s Lombardi Cancer Center, to the eight fantastic art therapists that we are so lucky to have at our five program locations.

 Click here to read more about Matt and his award.

Matt Gerson


Thank you, Matt. We are lucky to have you.




The 8th annual And the Winner Is…Tracy’s Kids event is now taking place in Washington, DC on the evening of

Wednesday, February 13th 2013


2012 was another great year for Tracy’s Kids and the children and families we serve. This year we provided some 15,000 free hours of art therapy in five pediatric cancer clinics.  And we have now spent over $2.5 million to help pediatric cancer patients cope with the emotional stress and trauma imposed by cancer and its treatment.
But we could not have done any of it without the financial support from our wonderful friends.
We hope that you will be able to join us at the eighth annual “And the Winner is….” which will take place on Wednesday evening, February 13, 2013.
That evening our guests will once again walk the red carpet before eating, drinking and then watching one of six nominated and award winning films that we screen right in the heart of Hollywood’s award season. 
Thanks to the success of this annual event, the Tracy’s Kids program is offered at no cost to the children we work with at four Washington area clinics – the Children’s National Medical Center in both Washington and Fairfax, the Life With Cancer program at Fairfax/Inova Hospital and the Lombardi Cancer Center at Georgetown University Hospital – plus Methodist Children’s Hospital in San Antonio, Texas.


Click here to view the official 2013 invitation: 

Tracy’s Kids Invitation – February 13 2013


You can purchase tickets by credit card through our online donation site or with a check by contacting Susan O’Neill & Associates at 301-229-0124 or  TracysKids@ONeillEvent.com.

We hope to see you on the red carpet celebrating Tracy’s Kids on our new night:

Wednesday, February 13th!