Our Founder The Story of Our Founder and Inspiration
In 1997, Patricia Henley did something that few of us could find the courage to do: she sued a giant corporation, Philip Morris.
Following a dismal diagnosis of inoperable lung cancer, this 35-year smoker went after big tobacco for the “sake of the children”. She wanted to make a difference in the lives of youngsters not yet hooked on smoking. Hers was a precedent-setting case, and after seven grueling years of legal battles, Patricia finally won her settlement and her fight with cancer. The giant was ordered to pay.
Patricia Henley feels that it is of most importance to support and give opportunities to children. It is with this feeling that she made the decision to use a portion of her award to fund this foundation to inspire the voice of youth through creative arts.
…fighting for this doesn’t make me a hero, it makes me a human being
As is her character, Patricia stood by her word to fight for children. When asked: “Why did you think you had the right to sue this company?” She answered: “I had no other choice. Believe me, fighting for this doesn’t make me a hero, it makes me a human being.”
We all thank Patricia Henley for her courage to do the right thing and to inspire others to do the same.