Blood Cancer Battle Inspires Nurse’s Career, Fundraising
Nov 17, 2022
Sutter Health
Dulcy Wilson, RN, MSN, was inspired by the nursing care she received during her battle with leukemia at Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento to become a nurse.

by Anita Creamer and Monique Binkley Smith, Vitals contributors

Dulcy Wilson was 18 when she was diagnosed with leukemia. She received a life-saving bone marrow transplant in 1997 at Sutter Medical Center, Sacramento and was so impressed with the nurses who cared for her she decided she wanted to be a Sutter nurse, too.

Early in 2004, she accomplished her dream and became an oncology and bone marrow transplant nurse in the same unit where she’d received treatment. Today, Wilson is an oncology clinical nurse educator teaching her fellow nurses the skills they need to provide the best possible care to their patients with cancer.

Dulcy Wilson was inspired by the nurses who cared for her when she had leukemia to become a nurse.

Wilson recently joined 120 Sutter employees—and their families and friends—taking part in the Light the Night event at Sutter Health Park. The annual event benefits the Lymphoma and Leukemia Society’s (LLS) mission to fund research that will help blood cancer patients—including Sutter patients, now and in the future.

According to LLS statistics, leukemia, lymphoma and other blood cancers account for about 10% of new cancer cases in the United States each year. More than 1.2 million Americans are either living with or in remission from a blood cancer.

At Light the Night, walk participants carry illuminated lanterns—white in honor of survivors and the power of research, red in support of patients and finding cures and gold in remembrance of those who have died. The emotional and beautiful event is dedicated to those who are fighting the darkness of blood cancers.

“As a Sutter employee,” Wilson says, “events like Light the Night make me so incredibly proud to be part of Sutter.”


“Once again, Sutter stepped up to show support for our community—and we stepped up big,” says Wilson who served as co-captain for Team Sutter. This year, Sutter participants raised more than $150,000 for blood cancer research.

“I am so proud of what we were able to accomplish this year. And I’m even more proud that all of this work will go to help LLS care for patients and lead us to a world without blood cancer,” she says.

The cause is especially important to Sutter Health’s interim president and chief executive officer, James Conforti.  He lost both his brother and brother-in-law to leukemia in 2019.

“Thank you to everyone who joined in and supported Sacramento’s Light the Night event,” Conforti says. “The Sutter Health mission lives in the communities we serve, not just within the walls of our clinics and hospitals. At Light the Night, we match our people with our mission.”

For the second straight year, Conforti was the Light the Night event’s top individual fundraiser. In recognition of his efforts, LLS awarded him its Hero Award as Top Fundraiser. The award will link an LLS grant to cutting-edge research and will be named in honor of his brother, Mark, and brother-in-law, Kirk.

Sutter Health’s board of directors also donated to LLS in honor of Conforti’s dedication and commitment to the cause.

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