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Put it on plastic

Herberger’s “Charge Against Breast Cancer” campaign

A few simple swipes of a Herberger’s credit card can add up to a big difference in women’s breast cancer research. Every time a purchase is made with a Herberger’s card, Carson Pirie Scott & Co. — the parent company of Herberger’s department stores — donates a portion of the sale to the University of Minnesota Cancer Center. The money is used for women’s breast cancer research that could help find ways to improve the chances of detecting breast cancer early and finding better treatment options.

Carson Pirie Scott & Co. has been giving to the Cancer Center through its “Charge Against Breast Cancer” campaign since 2001. In those four years, proceeds from the promotion and the sale of pink ribbon merchandise have topped $250,000.

“Until there is a cure, we want to be involved because it certainly is a disease that affects many of our associates and customers alike,” says Ed Carroll, executive vice president for sales promotion and marketing at Carson Pirie Scott & Co., noting that the majority of Herberger’s employees and shoppers are women.

Carroll says the Milwaukee-based company believes that it’s important to keep money raised through the promotion local. That means the money accrued by store credit card sales at the 18 Herberger’s and Younkers stores in Minnesota stays in Minnesota, he says. The company has similar promotions in Wisconsin, Illinois, and Iowa.

“Rather than being involved with a national organization, we felt it was appropriate for us to localize our involvement in communities where we do business,” Carroll says.

Carson Pirie Scott & Co. chose the University of Minnesota Cancer Center for several reasons: The University is located in the Twin Cities, is well known in the community, and has earned a designation as a National Cancer Institute comprehensive cancer center.

Investigators with the Cancer Center’s breast cancer research program are focused on improving current research and discovering new methods to detect, treat, and prevent breast cancer to decrease the number of breast cancer-related deaths. Researchers from many disciplines are collaborating on several projects, ranging from understanding the biology of breast cancer to enhancing treatment through more precisely targeted therapies.

As director of the Cancer Center, John Kersey, M.D., sees firsthand how the “Charge Against Breast Cancer” campaign is making a difference.

“The money raised by Herberger’s has supported research that will allow earlier diagnosis and better treatments for breast cancer,” Kersey says. “Despite much progress, this continues to be the most frequent major cancer in women. We are all thankful to Herberger’s for its ongoing support.”

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