Ken Betz and his late wife, Judy, have always loved summers with their family on Lake Michigan in northern Michigan. During a trip to the local ice cream stand one year, granddaughter Alexa, then about 3 years old, fell ill.
“She took one lick of ice cream and ran to the woods to throw up,” says Mr. Betz. “I thought, ‘what child doesn’t like ice cream?’”
After subsequent episodes — some resulting in trips to the emergency department — Alexa’s parents had her evaluated and she tested positive for an egg allergy. The Betzes, who have a long history with U-M, wanted to do something to help.
“We first heard about the Food Allergy Center from our daughter, Anne (Kittendorf), a doctor at the University of Michigan,” Mr. Betz says. “Because of Alexa, and all of the conditions that she’s been faced with, we fell in love with the possibilities.”
Ken and Judy Betz decided to create The Kenneth and Judy Betz Family Research Professorship Fund which gives investigators, the opportunity to pursue the breakthroughs for which Alexa, now 15, and other children are hoping for.