Cancer Center Celebrates the Spirit of Volunteerism

Prestigious awards honor Jim Mcllwain, T.J. Moran and Kim and Trey Bowman


(Baton Rouge, La.) Three prestigious awards, named after individuals who are outstanding examples of fighting cancer through volunteer leadership, were recently presented to several exemplary community members. The awards were presented at a special reception at Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center Monday, Nov. 16.

“It is my pleasure to be a part of this special event that recognizes the extraordinary efforts of individuals in our community who have long-dedicated themselves to lessening the burden of cancer,” said Brett Furr, chairman of Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center’s board of directors.

The Hillar C. Moore Jr., Memorial Outstanding Leadership Award was presented by Hillar Moore, III to Jim Mcllwain, General Counsel and Secretary of Lamar Advertising Company. The award recognizes a Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center volunteer who has made a significant and unique service contribution to the organization’s philanthropic initiatives.

A board member, philanthropist and volunteer since 2004 when he joined the Annual Giving Campaign Committee, Mcllwain also joined the Cancer Center Foundation board of directors and the Joint Development Committee (JDC) in 2007 and served as Chair of an extremely successful annual Giving Campaign that same year. He has continued his service on the JDC every year since 2007, serving as Chair from 2011-2013. Under his chairmanship, the JDC led efforts to develop and implement the largest fundraising campaign in Mary Bird’s history – $25 million. Leading by example, Mcllwain and his wife, Terri, continue to take the fight against cancer forward as leadership donors every year.

The Louis D. Curet Volunteer Fundraising Award was presented posthumously to Thomas J. “T.J.” Moran who passed away in May of this year. Moran’s son, Burke, accepted the award from Louis Curet on his father’s behalf. This award recognizes an individual, organization or foundation that has launched or led a significant philanthropic effort in support of Mary Bird Perkins – Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center.

In 1990, Moran was a founding member of the Cancer Center’s annual Golf Classic. Known today as the Merrill Lynch Open, it is one of the Cancer Center’s largest fundraising events. Just two years after the golf tournament was created, Moran envisioned and assumed leadership for the highly successful Brick by Brick capital campaign for the construction of the six-story addition to the Cancer Center. In 2010, Moran made an extraordinary $1 million gift to the endowment of the Cancer Center’s Foundation to ensure patients and their families’ access to all the services they need now and in the future. His overwhelming generosity, born of his desire to thank his caregivers at the Cancer Center for the excellent care he received as a 26-year survivor of throat cancer, brought the Heart of a Hero grateful giving program to life.

The D. Jensen Holliday Memorial Community Service Award is a community-wide award created as an expression of gratitude for the significant contributions Holliday made to Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center as a board member for 10 years, including the two years he served as chairman (1998 – 2000) prior to his death from cancer. Estelle Holliday presented this year’s award to Kim and Trey Bowman for reflecting Jensen Holliday’s vision and dedication to the greater good of the community while making a sustained and measureable difference in the fight against cancer.

The Bowmans created the Bella Bowman Foundation after their eight-year-old daughter lost her life to brain stem necrosis, a rare side effect from the proton radiation she received for brain cancer. The foundation aims to help families of children suffering from brain cancer and further research and education on radiation necrosis. Kim actively serves on the board of Cancer Services of Greater Baton Rouge where she and her husband lead support groups for parents and grandparents coping with a child’s cancer. The Bowmans are involved in all the activities of the Foundation, including personally directing and managing Bella’s Ball, the foundation’s signature fundraiser. The foundation has granted $75K to the LSU Medical Physics program to support research to study the cause of radiation necrosis.   At the conclusion of the program, award recipients were escorted to the first floor to permanently place their recognition tiles on the Cancer Center’s “Our Community” wall.


As a Gulf South destination for cancer care, Mary Bird Perkins—Our Lady of the Lake Cancer Center offers advanced technology and services provided by nationally-recognized doctors and other oncology health professionals who have dedicated their lives to fighting the disease. The Cancer Center is consistently recognized for its dedication to offering leading-edge, comprehensive care at every stage of the cancer journey.