The Foundation

The Foundation

The Dean Hedstrom Foundation for Melanoma Awareness was founded by Dean’s friends and family after Dean lost his battle with Stage IV Melanoma on April 25, 2009. His friends and family are determined to make sure Dean’s memory lives on and he is honored for the amazing man he was, the amazing life he lived, and the amazing battle he fought.

Of the 60,000 people diagnosed with melanoma each year, over 8,000 will die from this devastating disease.

Our mission is to educate the public, especially young people, regarding the risks of over exposure to the sun and advancing research that will lead to new treatments and someday a cure for Melanoma.

The foundation is a 501(c)3 organization and has no paid employees. Our first benefactor is the Chi Chi Rodriguez Golf Club and Academy in Clearwater, Florida. Their program utilizes golf as a cornerstone to build self-esteem, instill a strong work ethic, and stress the importance of a good education in the lives of the disadvantaged children. In 1993, their foundation opened a public school in partnership with the Pinellas County School District for at risk children. They are also a major promoter of The First Tee Program, The Boy’s and Girl’s Club of America, and Big Brothers Big Sisters of Pinellas County. They have an extensive after school program for children enrolled in these programs, which includes learning the game of golf. It is our foundation’s goal to protect these children from the sun while they practice their golf swings.

Funds raised from our first golf tournament allowed us to purchase and donate a CoverShots™ sunshade structure to Chi Chi Rodriguez Golf Club and Academy. Coppertone generously donated 400 bottles of sunscreen for children to lather up with every day!

We also support the Dean Hedstrom Foundation Research Fund at the University of California San Francisco. Research has advanced in the past few years. There are several treatments showing great promise and we want to do what we can to support the researchers working on these treatments.

As we work very hard to save lives through education and awareness, your help is needed. We greatly appreciate all levels of participation and support. For more information on how you can help make a difference, please contact or 727-286-3090.

As Dean always said… “Never give in, never give up and never lose.”