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The one hundred honoree: Susan Zuker

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: Susan Zuker

Mass General Giving

Michael Zuker was positive and loving throughout his four-month ordeal with lung cancer. Soon after Michael’s death in January 2004, his wife Susan founded the Conquer Cancer Coalition of Massachusetts to advance cancer care in his honor.

Susan and her sons Matthew and Jonathan waged a grass-roots campaign to establish the state’s Conquer Cancer license plate. After two years of tireless canvassing, they obtained 1,500 applications, many from people with their own cancer stories. The Zukers presented the applications to the Registry of Motor Vehicles on January 25, 2006, the two-year anniversary of Michael’s death. In August, the plate was officially unveiled at the State House.

On January 25, 2007, the foundation began distributing the funds raised through sales of license plates. Annual grants support the Brigham and Women’s Channing Laboratory and four local cancer care providers.

Due to Susan and her sons’ efforts, thousands of Bay State drivers have the plate, which so far has raised about $250,000 to fight cancer. Jonathan designed its images — an eternal flame with a teardrop, a sunrise, and a boat — evoking his father’s love of fishing.