To Top

Meet Jay Feinberg of Gift of Life Marrow Registry in Boca Raton

Today we’d like to introduce you to Jay Feinberg.

Headquartered in Boca Raton, Florida, Gift of Life is an international public bone marrow and blood stem cell registry. Through its life-saving work, Gift of Life is a world leader in facilitating transplants for children and adults suffering from many life-threatening diseases, like leukemia and lymphoma.

When he was diagnosed with leukemia, Jay was told he would need a bone marrow transplant to survive. He had no idea that his personal journey would result in the establishment of a grassroots organization— Gift of Life. But that’s precisely what happened.

Jay’s story is one of transforming adversity into success. When he got sick, Jay was told that a transplant could save his life, but he would probably die before finding a matching donor. He quickly learned the reason why. A patient’s best chance of finding a genetic match lies with those of similar ethnic background. Unfortunately, the worldwide registry was not representative of all ethnic groups, and Jay was Jewish. There was an urgent need to add diversity to the registry and time was of the essence.

Jay’s family and friends didn’t want to see him die needlessly. They wanted him to have an equal opportunity to find a match. So, they launched an ambitious grassroots donor recruitment campaign, resulting in the enrollment of tens of thousands of new donors in the worldwide registry. But after four years, they still couldn’t find a match for Jay, despite helping many other patients in need.

That’s when his miracle happened. A young man decided to run one last drive because his best friend had found a match through a drive held for Jay. He knew the odds were against him, but he was determined to return the gift. And that is exactly what he did.

Jay’s four-year search for a donor came to a close in May 1995. The very last donor — tested at that very last drive — turned out to be his miracle match! Jay received his transplant a short time later at the world renowned Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Seattle thanks to his miracle match, Becky, and a determined young man who wouldn’t take no for an answer.

Has it been a smooth road?
After surviving the transplant, Jay has dedicated his life to helping others in need. He is a visionary and a leader in the forefront of transplantation and donor recruitment. Due to this some may not have always wanted to follow his lead, but Gift of Life is so proud to be the first of many such as using buccal swabs to register donors, create its own proprietary software system, and be the first to create its own phone application to recruit donors just to name a few.

So, as you know, we’re impressed with Gift of Life Marrow Registry – tell our readers more, for example, what you’re most proud of as a company and what sets you apart from others.
We pride ourselves on being the first bone marrow registry run by a transplant recipient. We recruit bone marrow donors into the registry for patients in need worldwide to give the many patients in need hope of finding their cure.

We are known as leaders in our field for vision and not being afraid to take that next step.

I would say what makes us unique is that we make every donor, recipient, and volunteer feel like family and not a number. We want them to know we are here for them thru their journey.

To date we have almost tested 300,000 donors into the worldwide registry and saved over 3,000 lives, What can be better than that.

Let’s touch on your thoughts about our city – what do you like the most and least?
I would say what I like best about our city is the fact it’s so diverse.

There really is not much not to like about our city. We have beautiful weather, people, cuisine, businesses and more!

Contact Info:

Getting in touch: VoyageMIA is built on recommendations from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you know someone who deserves recognition please let us know here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

More in