Vickie Winans Headlines Gospel Explosion At Adams Mark

Friday, March 25, 2011

Faith-Based Women’s Groups Partner to Promote Breast-Cancer Awareness

BUFFALO, NY — Several “First Ladies” representing area African-American churches will again join with Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center (Roswell Park), the Community Foundation of Greater Buffalo and Susan G. Komen for the Cure to raise awareness about breast cancer at the third annual Women’s Health “Gospel Explosion,” to be held tonight, March 25, 2011, inside the ballroom at the Adam’s Mark Hotel located at 120 Church Street in Downtown Buffalo beginning at 7 p.m.

This year’s Gospel Explosion will feature performances by national gospel recording artist Vickie Winans, as well as local gospel artists. More than 600 people attended last year’s event, and nearly 200 women asked to receive more information about breast-cancer screening.

“African-American women are more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer and are twice as likely as Caucasian women to die from the disease,” said Detric Johnson, Director of the Buffalo/Niagara Witness Project. “Breast cancer is the most common cancer among African-American women and is the second-most-common cause of death. These deaths are greatly reduced with simple education and routine breast-cancer screenings.”

The Witness Project, operated at Roswell Park through the Institute’s Office of Cancer Health Disparities Research, is a spiritually based breast-and-cervical-cancer education program through which cancer survivors and lay health advisors increase awareness, knowledge, screening, and early-detection behaviors for African-American women in an effort to reduce mortality and morbidity rates from cancer. So far this year, the project has been instrumental in screening more than 280 women.

“Our women need to be educated about this disease,” said Denise Hurst, the First Lady representing Greater Emmanuel Temple and a member of the First Ladies of Western New York, an organization that has helped organize Gospel Explosion events the past three years. “By simply talking to your family doctor and getting tested early, you may save your life.”

Many First Ladies who are also breast-cancer survivors themselves will share their unique stories with audience members attending this year’s event. For more information about the 2011 Gospel Explosion or the Witness Project, contact Detric Johnson at (716) 845-1394.

The mission of Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center is to understand, prevent and cure cancer. Roswell Park, founded in 1898, was one of the first cancer centers in the country to be named a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center and remains the only facility with this designation in Upstate New York. The Institute is a member of the prestigious National Comprehensive Cancer Network, an alliance of the nation’s leading cancer centers; maintains affiliate sites; and is a partner in national and international collaborative programs. For more information, visit Roswell Park’s website at, call 1-800-ROSWELL (1-800-767-9355) or email

Media Contact: 

Annie Deck-Miller, Senior Media Relations Manager