A Brief Summary

The first Cattle Baron's Ball was a full-fledged Texas barbecue under the chairmanship of Patti Hunt and Jacque Wynne, who founded the event to raise funds for cancer research through the American Cancer Society. More than 500 guests attended the western-themed event in 1974, which was held at Toddie Lee Wynne's Star Brand Ranch. Through ticket sales and the auction, the inaugural event raised $56,000. In 2007, the Ball raised more than $4.1 million, and was attended by nearly 4,000 guests. In recent years, the American Cancer Society moved to protect this valuable brand by trademarking the Cattle Baron's name.

Country music's most revered performers have entertained at the ball throughout its 35-year history, including Tammy Wynette, Johnny Cash, Willie Nelson, George Strait, Waylon Jennings, Brooks & Dunn, Clint Black, Dwight Yoakam, Big & Rich, Toby Keith, Sugarland and Brad Paisley, among many others.

And while some might be hand-wringing at the prospect of continuing a legacy of ensuring more cancer research dollars are spent in Dallas than anywhere else in the country, they probably aren't familiar with the members of the Cattle Baron's Ball. Fortunately, the Cattle Baron's Ball Committee is not comprised of the faint-of-heart ~ as evidenced by the fact that the CBB is the single largest fundraiser in the nation for cancer research through the American Cancer Society. To date, the ball has generated nearly $48 million in only 38 years. More than $32 million of that has stayed right here in Dallas, at the venerable UT Southwestern Medical Center.


Facts About the American Cancer Society

The Society has:

  • Invested nearly $3 billion in cancer research that has saved millions of lives.
  • Supported more than 20,000 grants, including funding 40 researchers who have gone on to win the Nobel Prize.
  • Funded local cancer research at UT Southwestern Medical Center and University of North Texas Health Science Center.

Major cancer research breakthroughs with Society involvement:

  • Cure for childhood leukemia with combination chemotherapy
  • Pap smear to detect cervical cancer
  • Mammography to screen for breast cancer
  • Lumpectomy plus radiation for treatment of breast cancer
  • PSA test for prostate cancer screening
  • Chemotherapy for colon cancer
  • Identification of smoking as cause of lung cancer
  • Creation of recombinant DNA and gene cloning
  • Discovery of cancer-causing oncogenes and tumor suppressor genes
  • Discovery of genes for inherited breast and colon cancer
  • Use of tamoxifen to reduce risk of second or first breast cancer
  • Development of monoclonal antibodies to treat breast cancer (Herceptin) and lymphoma (Rituxan)
  • Use of small molecule inhibitors such as Gleevec for treatment of chronic myeloid leukemia

The future:

Cancer prevention studies such as Hammond-Horn, Cancer Prevention Study (CPS) I, and CPS II have shown that cancer risk is affected by lifestyle choices. Avoiding tobacco products, moderate use of alcohol, avoiding sun exposure and maintaining a healthy weight have been proven to reduce cancer risk. Ongoing research through CPS III will study individuals for 20-30 years to better understand the genetic, lifestyle and environmental factors that cause cancer.

The next 60 years of the research program will continue to develop more targeted therapies and new methods to prevent cancer and detect cancer early. Future research will focus on chemoprevention, nanotechnology, gene-chip technology and cancer vaccines.


Committee: 100 committed community volunteers, who are vetted for their fundraising experience as positions open

Info: www.cattlebaronsball.com

30 Highland Park Village, Suite 216
Dallas, TX, 75205

214.443.9222 (p) 214.443.9224 (f)