Health leader named Hill Legacy Award recipient

Keith Warner is the 2013 J. Stanley and Doris Hill Legacy Award recipient. — Submitted

White Bear Lake resident Keith Warner is the 2013 J. Stanley and Doris Hill Legacy Award recipient. Established by the Century College Foundation, the Mahtomedi Area Educational Foundation and the White Bear Lake Area Educational Foundation, the award honors the memory of Stan and Doris Hill for their remarkable commitment to community service.  

Readers may link Keith’s name to the White Bear Lake Area Relay for Life. He and his wife, Patty, co-founded the event in 1995. As a result of their joint efforts, the local American Cancer Society fundraiser has raised $3.85 million toward cancer research over the past 18 years. Not only has Keith served as the Relay’s organizer, “PR director and chief cheerleader,” as nominator, Judy Skeie-Voss notes, but he continually offers caring support for those who are dealing with the disease. Keith’s enthusiasm as an inspirational speaker is matched by his ability to lend emotional support to those in need.

Keith is a four-time cancer survivor whose daughter, Lori, died of the disease. He has been a member of the American Cancer Society (ACS) in both state and national levels since 1994 and was on the Nationwide Relay Advisory Team from 1998 to 2006. Warner has advocated for health policy issues at the American Cancer Society Day at the Capitol (St. Paul and Washington, DC) and has been involved in the ACS Cancer Action Network.

For his ACS volunteer efforts, Keith has received the St. George Award (the highest ACS volunteer award) as well as the Nationwide National Relay for Life Advisory Team Award. Most recently, he was presented with the Midwest Division Fight Back Through Advocacy Award in 2012.  

A carrier of Lynch syndrome (a genetic disease that increases the risk of colon and other types of cancer), Keith coordinated a “Local Image” On Location TV 19 educational program to raise awareness of the syndrome. In the spring of 2012, Keith also coordinated efforts to persuade the governors of Minnesota, Wisconsin, Iowa and South Dakota to declare “Lynch Syndrome Heredity Cancer Awareness Day” on March 22 of that year. Keith’s consistent message is that of focusing on the importance of  exploring cancer history in families.

Keith was instrumental in initiating the Emmy Award-winning health show, “Inside Health Care,” which began airing on the On Location TV 19 channel in January of 2005. The program, now carried on 10 different cable TV stations within the Twin Cities and on YouTube, investigates a large variety of health-and medical-related issues.    

Keith is a member of the St. John’s Hospital Community Advisory Group. The team serves as a sounding board from the local community to hospital management.      

Keith and Patty are very involved in St. Mary of the Lake Church in White Bear Lake.  

As a result, they received the Dougherty Award in 2006. The award is presented annually to someone in the community who has demonstrated extraordinary service and commitment to the parish in a variety of ways for many years.

In 2004, the White Bear Area Chamber of Commerce presented Keith and Patty with the Volunteers of the Year Award. Though not a member of the Vadnais Heights Rotary Club, Keith was recognized by the organization for his outstanding volunteer work; he was named a Paul Harris Fellow by the Rotary Foundation of Rotary International in 2012.

Keith was a member of the Ramsey County Capital Improvement Advisory Commission from 2009 to 2012 and in 2010 Keith served as a community representative to the White Bear Lake Area School District’s Strategic Planning Committee.  

Keith and Patty have four surviving children, ( six grandchildren and one great-grandchild), all of whom live with their families in the metro.

Keith Warner exemplifies the volunteering spirit of Stan and Doris Hill. Keith’s ability to embrace a strong sense of community service and his continued commitment toward helping others demonstrate qualities befitting the profile of the J. Stanley and Doris Hill Legacy Award. The legacy that Stan and Doris Hill created will live on through Keith’s extraordinary volunteer service.

A public reception honoring Keith Warner will take place at 7 p.m. Tuesday, May 21 at Century College on the East Campus in the Library Fireplace Area.  

— Submitted by the 2013 J. Stanley and Doris Hill Legacy Award Committee

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