Mercer Island resident Bill Bell is a recipient of the highest honor bestowed by the Whitman College Alumni Association for his outstanding work to improve the quality of life for people suffering from Parkinson’s disease in the Seattle area.
An advocate for Parkinson’s patients and their families since his mother’s early diagnosis, Bell co-founded the Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation in 1998. In 2000, the foundation received a $200,000 grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Bell currently serves on the board of directors for both the Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation and the Davis Finnery Foundation, which promotes Parkinson’s research.
“The process learned through the Whitman experience gives one the tools to attack and solve problems from many angles,” he said. “If you tackle the problem with the confidence of your convictions, you’ll find the solution. It then becomes a game of when, rather than if, the solution will come.”
When the Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation first opened the Booth Gardner Parkinson’s Care Center with Evergreen Hospital, it was one of only two care centers specializing in the treatment of Parkinson’s disease in the nation.
“Over the years, we’ve met some of the most courageous and inspiring people who happen to face a chronic, degenerative disease,” Bell said. “My mother, Tina, the inspiration for this effort, was certainly one of them. I feel myself lucky to have become a friend, champion and advocate to those touched by Parkinson’s.”
Learn more about the Northwest Parkinson’s Foundation at www.nwpf.org.