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The ALS Association Golden West Chapter to Honor Nanci Ryder with 2018 Walk Hero Award at the 16th Annual Los Angeles County Walk to Defeat ALS® on Sunday, November 4

The ALS Association Golden West Chapter is proud to announce that Nanci Ryder will be the recipient of the 2018 Walk Hero Award at the 16th annual Los Angeles County Walk to Defeat ALS.  The award is presented to an individual who is making courageous and inspirational efforts in the areas of advocacy, fundraising, and public awareness while they are living with ALS.  

Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig’s Disease, is a fatal, neurodegenerative disease that attacks nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord.  ALS does not discriminate — women and men of all ages and backgrounds are at risk, though for unknown reasons veterans are diagnosed with ALS twice as often as civilians.  People with ALS lose their ability to move, speak, swallow, and eventually the ability to breathe, while all five senses continue to function normally. At this time, there is no known cure. 

Nanci Ryder is a well-regarded Hollywood publicist and co-founder of BWR Public Relations in Los Angeles and New York. She was diagnosed with ALS in 2014, at the height of the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge, and has captured the attention of local and national media with her brave fight against the devastating disease. Nanci has since worked tirelessly to raise public awareness about ALS, and to advance research and multidisciplinary care along with her many friends and clients, including Courtney Cox, Jennifer Garner, Jeffrey Katzenberg, Emmy Rossum, Reese Witherspoon, and Renée Zellweger. She has received many awards for her awareness and fundraising efforts, including the President’s Award from the Publicists Guild.  She was also presented with a National Award from The ALS Association in 2016. You can see her video tribute here: Since her diagnosis, Nanci, along with her family and friends, has participated in the Los Angeles County Walk to Defeat ALS as “Team Nanci”, raising over $600,000 in support of the mission of The ALS Association Golden West Chapter.  To make a gift in support, please visit

The 16th Annual Los Angeles County Walk to Defeat ALS® will be held on Sunday, November 4, 2018 at 700 Exposition Park Drive, Exposition Park, Los Angeles CA. Registration starts at 9:00 a.m. with special opening ceremonies beginning at 10:15 a.m. and will feature speakers, the presentation of the 2018 Walk Hero Award and a special warm up. At 11:00 a.m., the 1 mile Walk will start in front of the historic Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County and take participants through the beautiful rose garden before returning to Exposition Park.   The event is open to the public, and all funds raised support the mission-critical priorities of The ALS Association Golden West Chapter in Care Services, Public Policy, and Research. This year’s goal is to raise $600,000 to advance the search for effective treatments and a cure for ALS and to serve the diverse, urgent needs of the ALS community. For more information, please contact Jessica Partida, Regional Director of Community Outreach at or visit our website

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