Zafar Brooks has been named the corporate and social responsibility professional of the year by PR News for his work with Hope on Wheels, the Fountain Valley-based automaker's pediatric cancer charity.
"We congratulate Zafar for being selected by PR News as one of its CSR Professionals of the Year," said John Krafcik, president and CEO of Hyundai Motor America. "Far too many children and families are affected by pediatric cancer. At Hyundai, our goal is to eradicate this horrible disease. Zafar is dedicated to this cause and works tirelessly on behalf of the children. We are pleased by this peer recognition for his hard work."
In 2011, Hope On Wheels donated $20 million to pediatric cancer research, its largest donation year to date. As part of the efforts led by Brooks, the program awarded its largest single grant -- $10 million -- to launch the Hyundai Cancer Institute at CHOC Children's in Orange County, which will study innovative approaches to understanding the disease through genomic medicine research. Additionally, during National Childhood Cancer Awareness month, Hope On Wheels executed 71 check presentation events, called Handprint Ceremonies, donating a total of $7.1 million to pediatric cancer organizations in September alone.
"I am thrilled to learn of this recognition for Zafar Brooks and his work with pediatric cancer," said Dr. Leonard Sender, medical director of the Cancer Institute at Children's Hospital of Orange County. "Zafar has been a passionate advocate on behalf of and is literally helping to transform the field. Under his leadership, the contributions of Hope On Wheels have been remarkable, and we commend the automaker and its dealers for joining this cause with such a high level of commitment."