Fifteenth Annual Walk for Kidneys Raises Over $225,000

June 25, 2014

National Kidney Foundation of Illinois 15th Annual Walk for Kidneys Raises Over $225,000

On Sunday, June 22, 2014, over 3,500 people participated in the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois’ 15th annual Walk for Kidneys. The three-mile walk held at Soldier Field raised over $225,000 to go toward programs dedicated to kidney health education and helping those at risk for or affected by kidney disease across the state.

Kidney disease is on the rise, and currently kills more than 90,000 Americans every year. One in three American adults is at risk for kidney disease. If left untreated, kidney disease can lead to kidney failure, causing those affected to rely on dialysis or a transplant to survive.

Among the attendees at Walk for Kidneys was special guest Scott MacIntyre, American Idol finalist and kidney transplant recipient. Scott took to the stage to share his inspiring and motivational story and also give a live performance. Additionally, local Chicago dignitaries, including Secretary of State Jesse White, the Jesse White Tumblers, and Cook County Commissioner Robert Steele attended the event, which was emceed by CBS meteorologist Steve Baskerville.

Anne Black, employee of the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois since 2002, attended this year’s walk as the first in her new role of Chief Executive Officer.

“It is amazing to see how much this event has grown over the past 12 years,” said Black. “Unfortunately, so has the prevalence of kidney disease.  More than 1.1 million people in Illinois have the disease and many don't even know it. We are working hard to make sure that number does not increase, one step at a time. Walk for Kidneys is just one way to create awareness of kidney disease and how it can be prevented.”

Walk for Kidneys is made possible each year through the immense support of family teams, volunteers, donors and sponsors. For the 13th year in a row, Walk for Kidneys was presented by Baxter International, Inc., headquartered in Deerfield, Illinois. This year, Baxter brought a team of more than 500 people, including employees, family members and friends. Top sponsors also included Gold Sponsor Astellas Pharma US, Inc. and National Partner, Satellite Healthcare Inc.

“Many Americans are still not aware of kidney disease, and Baxter is proud to join the NKFI in advancing information and support for the kidney disease community,” said Jill Schaaf, CVP and president of Baxter’s renal business, and NKFI board member. “As a pioneer and leader in dialysis care, Baxter has long been on the forefront of developing innovative solutions for people with kidney disease, and we look forward to continued collaboration with the NKFI to help increasing numbers of people learn about and manage this serious condition.”

About the National Kidney Foundation of Illinois
The National Kidney Foundation of Illinois improves the health and well-being of people at risk for and affected by kidney disease through prevention, education and empowerment. To learn more, please visit