Medal of Hope Award Recipients
We are thrilled to announce Katie Mattingly Brass and William O. “Bill” Perkins III as our honorees at our 18th Annual Race to Erase MS event on April 29, 2011. Katie and Bill have been instrumental in the support of the Nancy Davis Foundation for MS and have made a tremendous impact in the community by educating the public, raising awareness, and funding vitally important multiple sclerosis research.
We look forward to honoring these two generous individuals who have a made a significant mark in the field of MS research, bringing us one step closer to finding a cure for multiple sclerosis.
Biographies of those Changing the Face of Multiple Sclerosis
Katie Mattingly Brass
Katie Mattingly Brass is a philanthropist, an active leader in her community and a forerunner in supporting research to find a cure for multiple sclerosis.
Katie was born in Houston, Texas in 1972 and is the mother of two glowing daughters, Hallie age 7 and Joycie age 6, and the wife of longtime love, A.J. Brass. Katie and her family reside in Houston, Texas and she enjoys spending time in Hermosa Beach, CA.
Katie has been a longtime advocate for special needs children and is on the board of Camp Aranzazu in Rockport, Texas which provides special needs camping experiences for children with chronic and terminal illness. Katie is also the President of her family foundation, The Brass Family Foundation. Katie has been a civic leader, volunteering and fundraising for many years to benefit numerous Houston area non-profits including the American Heart Association, the Houston Livestock Show and Rodeo, The Junior League of Houston, Texas Children’s Hospital, the Children’s Museum of Houston, Dress for Success Houston and The Kinkaid School.
Diagnosed with MS in 2006, Katie immediately became a strong advocate of MS related medical research projects to help make the future brighter for those diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. During 2009 and 2010 the Brass Family Foundation, together with Bill Perkins and Small Ventures USA, underwrote a genetic research study in conjunction with Dr. Stephen Hauser, Chairman of UCSF Neurology Department. The study, resulting from the most advanced genomic analysis ever conducted on identical twins with MS, suggests a key role of environment factors in the disease. The study received worldwide attention from the science and medical fields and was featured on the cover of Nature Magazine.
Katie has been an active board member of the Nancy Davis Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis for over 3 years and is proud to be a leader in their “Race to Erase MS”.
William O. “Bill” Perkins III
William O. Perkins III is the founder and president of Small Ventures USA, LP (SMV), a private equity and venture capital firm based in Houston, Texas, and founded in 1997.
Mr. Perkins has more than a decade of experience in energy derivatives trading for AIG, El Paso Energy and Statoil. He is currently a significant market participant for Centaurus Energy.
Mr. Perkins has produced a number of films under his production company, Lleju Productions and Films, including After.Life, The Chameleon and Road Kill.
Mr. Perkins received a Bachelor of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Iowa where he also played for the Hawkeye’s football team. He currently resides in Houston with his wife and three children and is an active participant in the Save the Children charitable organization.