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Record-setters: More than $76,000 raised at Relay For Life

Doane College, with the oldest collegiate Relay For Life tradition in the country, had its best fundraising year ever, collecting $76,662 as of April 18.

Overnight on April 11-12, the night of the event, Doane had an announced total of $76,402.95, but donations have continued a week after the event. More money could still add to the total since Doane’s Relay For Life chapter accepts gifts year-round and until the college submits for awards in mid-June, all donations go toward this year’s total.

Relay For Life has become increasingly more effective in its fundraising efforts at Doane, yielding improved totals in recent years. Totals exceeded $50,000 in 2009 and 2010; $60,000 in 2011; and $70,000 in 2012.

Since 2007, Doane has been ranked first in fundraising in the American Cancer Society’s High Plains Division. Last year, Doane was second in the nation in per capita fundraising for colleges with enrollment between one and 2,499 students.

“This event is not possible without the amazing support we receive from the Doane, Crete and Saline County communities,” said Jay Fennell, the Crete campus staff Relay For Life adivsor and Hansen Leadership Program assistant director. “Relay is a completely student-planned and -run event at Doane and is like nothing I have seen on any other campus.”

Fennell said the students’ executive committee for Relay was instrumental in Doane’s record-setting total, which exceeded its goal of $68,000. Co-leaders were chairman Gentry Doane ’14 (Ansley) and chairwoman Brittany Ridder ’14 (Fullerton), and the committee was rounded out by Whitney Allbery ’14 (Omaha), Julia Downey ’15 (Merna), Mariah Morgan ’14 (Norfolk), Whitney Sorenson ’14 (Sidney) and Taylor Ziegler ’15 (Scottsbluff).

“I think this year's final total reflects the hard work and time they have dedicated to making this event a success,” Fennell said. “It was one of the best group of students I have ever advised and I was lucky to be a part of it.”

Entering this year, Doane had raised $530,938.77 since hosting the first college Relay event in the country in 1997.

This year’s total is still subject to expense deductions.