The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation is a charitable organization headquartered in Short Hills, New Jersey and dedicated to finding treatments and cures for paralysis caused by spinal cord injury and other neurological disorders. It also works to improve the quality of life for people living with disabilities.
In 2002, Christopher Reeve
said, “Nothing of any consequence happens unless people get behind an idea. It
begins with an individual and they share the idea with more individuals…and
eventually it becomes a movement.”
The Reeve Foundation was started in
1982 as a community response to a crisis that has grown into a national
movement. The early pioneers who started this Foundation (originally named
American Paralysis Foundation) began this work at a time when spinal cord
research was considered the graveyard of neurobiology. Christopher Reeve’s
injury in 1995, he became quadriplegic as a results
of a horse riding accident, changed the field forever and made this one of the
most promising fields in research. Dana Reeve was universally known as the model
for care giving, and her legacy includes the creation of the Quality of Life
program, which not only includes a grants program that has awarded over $10
million to organizations that help people living with paralysis in the here and
now; but also includes our Paralysis Resource Center that has reached tens of
thousands of those living with paralysis and their families with useful, often
life-saving and life-changing information.
Reeve sought out the help of
the APF and lent them his name and funding and eventually turned it into the
Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation and then the Christopher Reeve
As of early 2006, the Foundation has awarded more than $64
million (USD) in research grants and more than $8 million in quality-of-life
After Reeve's death in October 2004, his widow, Dana
Reeve, assumed the role of Chair of the Foundation. Dana Reeve herself died
17 months later, in March 2006, of lung cancer after which Peter D. Kiernan, III
On March 11, 2007, the Foundation announced that it changed
its name to Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation on the first anniversary of
Dana Reeve's death. The change, according to a news release by the Foundation,
was to reflect the "partnership, courage and compassion of the Reeves."Peter T.
Wilderotter, formerly the Vice President of Development was named the President
in March 2007.
In the spring of 2010 The Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation, partnered with
the Life Rolls On foundation.