Dianne Farb is an accomplished attorney working as general counsel for the UF College of Medicine and an acclaimed novelist, but what she’s most proud of is her work helping local cancer patients and their families.
“I think our best gifts are those that have an immediate impact on cancer patients and their families,” said Farb, who is co-founder of the nonprofit Climb for Cancer Foundation.
Farb was one of only two women who received the esteemed 2013 Women of Distinction Award, which recognizes outstanding community leaders, at a March 14 reception at Santa Fe College.
“I didn’t know I’d been nominated, so I was very shocked,” she said of the award.
Others aren’t surprised that Farb’s tireless work to better her community was recognized.
Though she juggles her foundation work with a professionally demanding job as general counsel for the UF College of Medicine and is also a published book author, Dianne always has time for and is genuinely interested in and concerned for others,” said Paul Okunieff, M.D., director of the UF Shands Cancer Center and the Marshall E. Rinker Sr. Foundation and David B. and Leighan R. Rinker Chair.
Farb and her husband, Ron, started Climb for Cancer in 2002 after seeing the challenges faced by the most vulnerable cancer patients — children and lower-income people, he said. The nonprofit has raised and donated more than $1 million for everything from pediatric cancer research and camps to providing food vouchers and gas cards to financially distressed families of cancer patients.
“Her many contributions to improving the lives of others make her most worthy of this award,” said Michael L. Good, M.D., dean of the UF College of Medicine.
Farb is an extraordinary legal professional with an incredible work ethic, mirrored in her personal life, he said.
But Farb, who earned her juris doctor degree with honors in 2000 from UF’s Levin College of Law, said she also makes time for fun in her life, specifically for her writing. She has published two novels and is now working on a third.
“It’s my creative outlet,” she said.