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Lung Association Honors All Volunteers, National Board Chair Kathryn A. Forbes during National Volunteer Week

(April 11, 2016) - CHICAGO

The American Lung Association was built on America's spirit of community that inspires us to work together for better health and longer life for all. In honor of National Volunteer Week, April 10 - 16, the Lung Association recognizes volunteers who share the vision of a world free of lung disease, including National Board Chair Kathryn A. Forbes.

"Kate is a very talented, passionate and natural leader who brings a wealth of professional and volunteer experience to the American Lung Association," said Harold P. Wimmer, National President and CEO of the American Lung Association. "Under Kate's leadership nationwide, we have made great strides in our quest to improve lung health, prevent lung disease and defeat lung cancer."

Forbes was elected Chair of the Lung Association's national Board of Directors and her two-year term began in July 2014. Forbes has provided leadership and support to Lung Association staff working nationwide to drive forward a strategic plan to achieve their vision of creating a world free of lung disease, including lung cancer.

Forbes, a resident of Phoenix, Ariz., has served as Vice President and Controller for Arizona Public Service Company, Senior Vice President and Western Operations Manager for Bank One Services Corporation and as CFO of eTec. With more than 30 years' experience in accounting, finance, executive management and auditing, she has led large organizations and managed several business ventures. She has been a member of the Lung Association's national Board since 2009. Like many Lung Association volunteers, her personal connection with lung health inspired her to volunteer for the organization.

"My family moved to Arizona in 1959 because my mother suffered from asthma, and at the time moving to a warmer and drier climate was one way to minimize the impact of asthma," Forbes said. "My granddaughter has also been diagnosed with asthma, so another generation of my family will benefit from the work of the Lung Association."

As the oldest American voluntary health organization, the American Lung Association has a long history of partnering with philanthropic citizens. The Lung Association was founded in 1904 in response to the threat of tuberculosis (TB), the leading cause of death at that time. With the belief that a national association should be something more than a medical society and driven by the idea that all individuals could do something about tuberculosis, the Lung Association was the first to combine the energies of physicians and laypersons in the fight against death and disease.

Now, with TB largely controlled in the U.S., the American Lung Association continues to partner with volunteers nationwide to improve lung health and prevent lung disease for all Americans, including those 32 million living with lung diseases such as asthma, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) and lung cancer. And under Forbes' leadership, the Lung Association named defeating lung cancer a strategic imperative of the organization, and successfully launched LUNG FORCE, a new movement to rally women to raise their voices and make lung cancer a public health priority.

"Breathing is essential to life. Every day, and from our first breath to our last, lung health and healthy air is critical," said Wimmer. "Dedicated volunteers like Kate are essential to our work, and her passion is what builds momentum as we move toward defeating lung cancer, supporting patients and ultimately—realizing our vision of a world free of lung disease."

The American Lung Association needs engaged volunteers to help us create a healthier world, free of lung disease. Opportunities are available for a variety of interests and skills, learn more at Lung.org/volunteer.

Read the Q&A with Forbes, and for media interested in learning more about our volunteers, Forbes or speaking with an expert about lung health, contact the American Lung Association at Media@Lung.org or 312-801-7628.

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About the American Lung Association

The American Lung Association is the leading organization working to save lives by improving lung health and preventing lung disease, through research, education and advocacy. The work of the American Lung Association is focused on four strategic imperatives: to defeat lung cancer; to improve the air we breathe; to reduce the burden of lung disease on individuals and their families; and to eliminate tobacco use and tobacco-related diseases. For more information about the American Lung Association, a holder of the Better Business Bureau Wise Giving Guide Seal, or to support the work it does, call 1-800-LUNGUSA (1-800-586-4872) or visit: Lung.org.

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