Alumna earns national recognition from American Diabetes Association

The American Diabetes Association recently awarded Willamette University alumna Darlene Cain with the prestigious Wendell Mayes Jr. Medal for Outstanding Service in the Cause of Diabetes.

Cain was honored for lifetime achievement in the cause of diabetes by a volunteer who is not a health professional. For more than 25 years, she has devoted her passion to furthering the mission of the American Diabetes Association and has inspired countless people to do more and give more to stop the disease.

Cain attended Willamette in the 1950s, and three of her children as well as a number of other family members have attended Willamette.

In 1989, Cain founded and directed the American Diabetes Association’s Gala Auction in Portland, and she continues to chair this annual event, which has raised more than $10 million to date. She was national chair of the board of the association in 2007.

She co-founded Dogs Assisting Diabetics, an organization that trains and places service dogs that alert their owners to low blood sugars. She also is active with the Amputee Coalition of America, and is chair of the Harold Schnitzer Diabetes Health Center at Oregon Health and Science University.