Warmest congratulations from all staff at QIMR go to Mr Salvatore (Sam) Coco, former owner of Queensland produce chain Coco’s Fresh Food Markets, for his OAM in this year’s Australia Day celebrations for service to the community through support for medical research, social welfare, arts and conservation organisations, and to the fresh food industry.
Sam has been a tireless and generous supporter of QIMR and medical research in Queensland and has raised over $500,000 for charity through his fresh markets and through fundraising activities. His support of QIMR began with an event he instigated called Fishing for Cancer Cure Day held at his property at Beaudesert. Hundreds converged on his property to fish in his private river, and feast under a marquee. Sam is also the man responsible for organising QIMR’s most successful fundraising event to date – a black-tie dinner which raised close to $200,000. This year Sam is organising a gala extravaganza in June to raise additional funds for QIMR cancer research.
A cancer survivor himself, Sam epitomises the spirit of community involvement in helping to make better health through medical research a reality for Australians. For his contributions to QIMR he was made a Fellow of the Institute in 2003. He has received various community awards and is also a Research Australia Thankyou Day Award winner for 2004.