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Senator Al Franken receives 2013 Advocacy Leadership Award

March 05, 2013

Advocacy Leadership AwardWashington, D.C., March 5, 2013 – The Arthritis Foundation presented Senator Al Franken (D-MN) with its 2013 Arthritis Foundation Advocacy Leadership Award this week in Washington, D.C. This prestigious annual award acknowledges policymakers who have performed exceptional service in support of the Arthritis Foundation’s mission by advancing public policy and the Foundation’s legislative agenda on behalf of the 50 million people and 300,000 children in the U.S. with arthritis.

Senator Franken was presented this award for his instrumental support of the Arthritis Prevention, Control and Cure Act and several critically important aspects of the Affordable Care Act that have already had a positive impact on many individuals with arthritis.  Since 2009, his office has worked closely with Arthritis Foundation staff and volunteers to ensure that the patient voice is heard and has always championed legislation that protects patients, supports providers and emphasizes the need for more research funding. 

"Arthritis affects far too many people across this country, including hundreds of thousands of Minnesotans," said Sen. Franken. "While we've made a lot of progress – including the development of cheaper, more effective treatments – we still have a lot of work to do. I want to thank the Arthritis Foundation for this incredible honor, and for being such an effective partner in the fight to improve treatments, bring down costs, and make life easier for people who suffer from arthritis."

Senator Franken holds a close personal connection to the disease as his mother suffered from severe rheumatoid arthritis, a debilitating immune disorder that affects nearly 1.5 million adults.

“On behalf of the entire Arthritis Foundation and the nearly 800,000 people in Minnesota living with arthritis, I would like to extend our gratitude for the continued support and encouragement we have received from Senator Franken and his staff,” says Karen Larson, CEO of the Arthritis Foundation Upper Midwest Region. “The Arthritis Foundation strives to provide resources and information that will decrease the pain and disability of arthritis.  With the continued support of Senator Franken and others dedicated to our mission, we are optimistic about positively impacting the lives of those living with arthritis.”

The 2013 Advocacy Leadership Award was presented during the Arthritis Foundation’s 15th annual Advocacy Summit, held March 4-6 in Washington, D.C.  The Advocacy Summit brought together nearly 325 key arthritis advocates from all 50 states, including the District of Columbia, to ask Congress to support people with arthritis through policies that will ensure more research, better treatments and increased access to care.

About the Arthritis Foundation

Striking one in every five adults and 300,000 children, arthritis is the nation’s leading cause of disability.  The Arthritis Foundation ( is committed to raising awareness and reducing the unacceptable impact of this serious and painful disease, which can severely damage joints and rob people of living life to its fullest.  The Foundation funds life-changing research that has restored mobility in patients for more than six decades; fights for health care policies that improve the lives of the millions who live with arthritis; and partners with families to provide empowering programs and information.

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2013 Advocacy Leadership Award

Photo by: Angela Lundberg

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