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Actors William H. Macy, Peter Gallagher Join Award-Winning Chef Aarón Sánchez to Headline Benefit Showcasing Science

  • Press Release
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Photos of the special guests and scientist honorees from the 2021 gala with the words:  Thank You!

Actor/director William H. Macy, actor/musician Peter Gallagher and award-winning chef Aarón Sánchez will join together for BrightFocus Foundation’s 6th Annual Gala, MIND | SIGHT | CURE: An Evening of BrightFocus on June 24. The virtual showcase will spotlight exemplary scientists and advocates working with the Foundation and driving some of the most exciting research around the globe to end diseases of mind and sight.

In a conversation led by producer/director James Keach, Macy will discuss his relationship with Alzheimer’s, both his father’s death from the disease and playing a character with dementia in the Showtime series Shameless. “I am looking forward to raising greater awareness of Alzheimer’s and more funding to support science to find a cure,” Macy said, “It is important we shed light on the disease, ending stigma and increasing research.”

Gallagher’s mother, a scientist who worked with Jonas Salk on the Polio vaccine, also had Alzheimer’s for nearly 20 years before she passed away at 79. “Watching a loved one suffer from Alzheimer's is excellent at making you feel powerless, but it doesn't have to make you feel alone,” said Gallagher.

Discussing the critical role of food in healthy aging and vision and how it influences his work, Sánchez will also share his famous guacamole recipe with the audience. “I’ve seen firsthand how disease robs people of their quality of life, and I am honored to be a part of helping all of us live longer and healthier lives.”

The evening will feature several BrightFocus-funded scientists whose work is at the forefront of saving mind and sight:

  • Developing a blood test to better diagnose Alzheimer’s (Randall Bateman, Washington University School of Medicine, Philip Verghese, PhD and Joel Braunstein, MD, MBA, C2N Diagnostics, David Holtzman, MD, Washington University School of Medicine);
  • Understanding the role of sleep in glaucoma (Ji Won Bang, PhD, New York University School of Medicine); and
  • Researching how diet impacts macular degeneration, a leading cause of blindness among older adults. (Dimitra Skondra, MD, PhD, University of Chicago)

For more information visit or call (301) 556-9368

About BrightFocus

BrightFocus Foundation is a leading source of private research funding to defeat Alzheimer’s, macular degeneration, and glaucoma. The organization has supported over 275 projects, a $60 million investment, over the past three years alone to find the cures for diseases of mind and sight. BrightFocus shares the latest research findings and best practices to empower families impacted by these diseases.