Coral Gables resident and diabetes dad Juan Elias Calles, CLU, ChFC, of Calles Financial secured a $5,000 grant from the Million Dollar Round Table (MDRT) Foundation on behalf of the Diabetes Research Institute (DRI), a center of excellence at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine.
This grant will advance the development of the groundbreaking DRI BioHub, an integrated mini organ that mimics the native pancreas. The DRI BioHub contains thousands of insulinproducing cells that sense blood sugar levels and release the precise amount of insulin needed — in real time.
A member of the MDRT for 37 years and an active supporter of the DRI for over a quarter of a century, Calles nominated and endorsed the DRI for the grant with belief that the DRI is the best hope for a cure for his daughter, Ivette Marie Calles, and the millions of others living with diabetes. Calles recently presented the grant to Diabetes Research Institute Foundation president and CEO Joshua W. Rednik.
Ever since his daughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 1985 at age 9, Calles has been a dedicated activist in raising money and awareness for the DRI. He was instrumental in initializing the foundation’s planned giving program and has participated in grassroots street corner collections, known as the Hi-Way Holdup. For two decades, he was a member of the DRI Foundation’s National Board of Directors, serving as secretary and as vice president for multiple terms. Calles also served on the DRI Foundation’s Florida Region Board of Directors.
The mission of the Diabetes Research Institute Foundation is to provide the Diabetes Research Institute with the funding necessary to cure diabetes now. The Diabetes Research Institute at the University of Miami Miller School of Medicine leads the world in cure-focused research. As the largest and most comprehensive research center dedicated to curing diabetes, the DRI is aggressively working to develop a biological cure by restoring natural insulin production and normalizing blood sugar levels without imposing other risks.
Researchers already have shown that diabetes can be reversed through islet transplantation, with some study patients living without the need for insulin injections for more than a decade. The Institute now is building upon these promising outcomes by developing the DRI BioHub, an integrated “mini organ” that mimics the native pancreas, containing thousands of insulin-producing cells that sense blood sugar levels and produce the precise amount of insulin needed in real time.
The Diabetes Research Institute and Foundation were created for one reason — to cure diabetes — which is and will continue to be its singular focus until that goal is reached. For the millions of children and adults affected by diabetes, the Diabetes Research Institute is the best hope for a cure.
For more information, visit online at DiabetesResearch.org or call 800-321- 3437.
The MDRT Foundation was created in 1959 to provide MDRT members with a means to give back to their communities. Since its inception, the foundation has donated more than $23 million in 67 countries around the world and from all 50 U.S. states. This year, the MDRT Foundation will award almost $1 million in grants to more than 100 charities. The majority of these funds were raised by MDRT members from MDRT members.
The MDRT Foundation is the philanthropic arm of the Million Dollar Round Table, the Premier Association of Financial Professionals. MDRT is an international, independent association of more than 39,000, or less than 1 percent, of the world’s best life insurance and financial services professionals from 491 companies and 87 nations and territories.