Dirk Koetter To Be Named Honorary MS Walk On The Wild Side Chairman

May 14, 2001

TEMPE, Ariz.--Arizona State University head football coach Dirk Koetter will be named as the Honorary Chairman of The National Multiple Sclerosis Society - Desert Southwest Chapter's Walk On The Wild Side for 2002 at an MS-sponsored luncheon on Thursday, May 17.

Coach Koetter and his wife, Kim, will attend the third annual Living WithoutBoundaries, Women and MS luncheon on Thursday at the Arizona Biltmore where this honor will be officially announced. To educate the public and raise funds, the Desert Southwest Chapter of the National MS Society is sponsoring the luncheon. Tickets range in price from $60 per person to $250 and tables range from $600 for a table of 10 to $2500. Ticket information isavailable by calling 480-968-2488.

'We are very excited to have Coach Koetter sign on as our 2002 MS Walk On The Wild Side Honorary Chair,' said Allen Gjersvig, President of the Desert Southwest Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. 'Our MS Walk, scheduled for March 2002, is the second largest fundraising project for the chapter and with coach Koetter's leadership, we hope to increase this important fundraising and awareness building project.'

'I am extremely proud to be a part of this effort against Multiple Sclerosis, a disease that hits close to home with me,' Koetter said. 'I was flattered to be asked to serve as the Honorary Chair of the 2002 Walk On The Wild Side and will cherish the responsibility. Increasing fundraising and raising awareness are key, and I am hopeful that we can accomplish that here.'

Multiple Sclerosis is a chronic disease of the central nervous system. It is devastating because it strikes during the younger adult years and slowly steals physical functioning in unpredictable ways. MS affects nearly a third of a million people in the U.S. Symptoms may be mild such as numbness in the limbs such as severe-paralysis or loss of vision. Most people with MS are diagnosed between the ages of 20 and 40, but the unpredictable physical and emotional effects can be lifelong. The progress, severity and specific symptoms of MS in any one person cannot yet be predicted, but advances in research and treatment are giving hope to those affected by the disease.

The Desert Southwest Chapter provides hope and services to families living with MS throughout Arizona and southern Nevada. Two out of three who are diagnosed with MS are female. Funds raised are used to support research toward discovery of a cause and cure for MS as well as for local programs that help families living with MS cope with the unpredictable nature of the disease.

Arizona Attorney General Janet Napolitano will serve as the Honorary Chairman of the Living Without Boundaries luncheon and one of the speakers. Joining Ms. Napolitano will be Mimi Mosher, a 35-year old Virginia artist and mother who has been living with MS since she was only 24 years old. Lin Sue Cooney, TV news co-anchor and women's health advocate, will also speak.

The Mission of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society is to end the devastating effects of multiple sclerosis. The Desert Southwest Chapter is located at 315 S. 48th St., Tempe, AZ 85281-2343.

This will be Coach Koetter's first season as head coach of the Sun Devils. He spent three seasons at Boise State University where he was twice named the Big West Conference Coach of the Year and compiled a 26-10 won-loss record. He also took the Broncos to consecutive bowl games, winning both.

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