Bringing Shade to the Community
Dr. Daniel Ladd’s nonprofit, The Shade Project, strives to educate on skin-cancer prevention / By Ayanna Estelle
“I don’t even remember if sunscreen existed when I was a kid,” says Dr. Daniel Ladd, a practicing dermatologist. Since his youth, skincare practices have improved, and adults stay informed by reading about the harmful effects of the sun and protect themselves with sunscreen and light outside activity. The age group not normally targeted for skincare education is children. This is why Dr. Ladd, along with his wife, Lurleen, created The Shade Project, a nonprofit intended to educate children and the rest of Austin on skin-cancer prevention. Their goal is to spread the message that we do not have to be afraid of the sun, and that we can be active, but we also must be smart. By partnering with local organizations such as the Austin Parks Foundation, the Ladds build shades over community parks and school playgrounds so they can be better utilized.
“You can have nice play areas, but if they get too hot to play on, then they can’t be used right,” Dr. Ladd says.
The Shade Project recently built a shade structure at Lamar Middle School, but ran in to a construction problem.
“Parks and schools don’t have structures built with shades in mind because they were planned more than 50 years ago,” Lurleen Ladd says.
The nonprofit overcame this obstacle and there now stands a shade allowing children to use the area at any time of the day. In order to help erase skincare misconceptions, The Ladds target adults through their Saturday morning talk show on KQBT 96.3 FM, as well as with Dr. Ladd’s practice, Tru-Skin Dermatology.
“If we can all teach the next generation, then hopefully we will see a change,” Dr. Ladd says. “The more awareness means the more good we can do.”
Visit theshadeproject.org to give the Ladds feedback on your shade needs for the community.
Dr. Daniel Ladd ’s Five Tips for a Safe-Skin Summer
1. Wear sunscreen. Apply sunscreen before going outside and even for long-distance car rides. Just because you are in your car does not mean you are protected.
2. Men are not invincible. With men known for doing the most outside activity such as ranching and fishing, they are the most at risk for skin damage but the group Dr. Ladd sees the least. Find a sunscreen that suits you and get checked by a dermatologist.
3. Avoid outside activity from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., the peak hours of the day. Save jogging for the early morning or evening.
4. Be aware of your body. If you see a mole changing or a suspicious mark, get it checked.
5. Get over the fear of going to the doctor. Dr. Ladd offers free screenings once a month, making checkups easier than ever.
ATX Man Sponsored Events
Vino y Virtuosos
June 7, 6:30 to 9 p.m., Austin Museum of Art
Music and wine enthusiasts alike are sure to enjoy the entertainment, refreshments and prizes at this year’s event. Viva Trio will perform to help raise money for Hospice Austin while guests have a chance to win a wine-cellar starter kit. Sponsorships are available at hospiceaustin.org or by contacting Beth Karotkin at email@example.com or 512.342.4791.
Tee Up to Cure Diabetes
June 7, 11:30 a.m., Twin Creeks Country Club
More than 130 golfers will meet up to benefit the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s effort to cure Type 1 diabetes. Individual golfers can register for $200, or as teams of four for $600 through JDRF.org.
Austin Young Chamber Poker Tournament
June 14, 6:30 to 10:30 p.m., The Parish
The Austin Young Chamber of Commerce is committed to giving young professionals an opportunity to network and grow their careers or businesses. Their poker tournament will continue that mission with a fun, exciting atmosphere for networking and winning prizes. Individuals can sign up to play or just to watch. Sponsorships are also being accepted. Visit austinyc.org for more details.
Big Brothers Big Sisters Ice Ball Gala
Aug. 25, 7 p.m. to midnight, Hilton Austin
This cocktail event has been supporting Austin’s youth for eight years now. Guests will enjoy gourmet food, drinks, dancing and a live auction. Tickets are $150 through austiniceball.org or $175 at the door.
Tenth-Annual Brian Jones Celebrity Golf Classic Benefiting the Boys & Girls Clubs of the Austin Area
Aug. 27, Twin Creeks Country Club
Brian Jones has a special place in his heart for Boys & Girls Clubs, and 10 years ago, he decided to pay it forward, creating a celebrity golf tournament. The former University of Texas All-American and NFL linebacker gathers his friends and former sports icons for a scramble-style tournament. If you want to mingle with the likes of Ed “Too Tall” Jones, Hollywood Henderson, Billy Joe DuPree, K.C. Jones and Eric Metcalf, put together a team of three and pair with a celebrity to make a foursome, then head out to the Twin Creeks Country Club for a super round of golf with breakfast, lunch and dinner provided, as well as prizes for longest drive and closest to the pin. There is also a mix-and-mingle pre-tournament celebration on Aug. 26. Each year, Jones also hosts a dinner for the kids of the Boys & Girls Club at Ruth’s Chris Steak House.
“I want to give them opportunities to feel comfortable in situations they might not otherwise have the chance to experience. The Classic helps to provide Austin youth with safe spaces and compassionate mentors and participants with the opportunity to make a real difference and change lives,” Jones says. “It’s amazing that we are embarking on the 10th-annual Brian Jones Golf Classic. If you witnessed the first tournament, you would have never anticipated the success we have enjoyed over the past nine years. Onward and upward!”
The tournament sells out every year, so early registration is recommended. For more information, call 512.444.7199, or visit bgcaustin.org.
Photo by Carrie Moss Photography.