Dolly Parton gives $ 1M to pediatric infectious disease research

Dolly Parton is donating $ 1 million to pediatric infectious disease research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, the organization announced on Wednesday.

The new gift is one of several Parton has made to the center over the years, including a $ 1 million gift in April 2020 for COVID vaccine research.

That gift helped Vanderbilt researchers test an array of drugs aimed at reducing the life-threatening symptoms associated with COVID-19, the center said in a news release.

Generous: Dolly Parton is donating $ 1 million to pediatric infectious disease research at Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville, the organization announced on Wednesday. Seen in March

Researchers are also looking at entirely new therapies to both treat COVID-19 and prevent infection.

Parton’s new gift will support a variety of ongoing research at the medical center.

That includes understanding how viruses and bacteria cause disease, understanding and preventing antibiotic resistance.

Still a big attraction on stage: Parton's 34th Grand Opening Season with Festival Of Nations at Dollywood in Tennessee in 2019

Still a big attraction on stage: Parton’s 34th Grand Opening Season with Festival Of Nations at Dollywood in Tennessee in 2019

It will also study how to prevent and treat infections, diagnosing and treating infections in children with cancer, and gauging the impact of childhood infections throughout the world, according to the news release.

‘Dolly’s previous support to infectious disease research, and also our pediatric cancer program, has already saved countless lives,’ said Dr. Jeff Balser, president and CEO of Vanderbilt University Medical Center and dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

‘This new gift will bolster our defenses against future threats to the safety of this region and society as a whole.’

A siren in red: Here she is seen in a scarlet and white gown in the late 1990s

A siren in red: Here she is seen in a scarlet and white gown in the late 1990s

Parton said she supports the work because she loves children.

‘No child should ever have to suffer,’ Parton said in a news release. ‘I’m willing to do my part to try and keep as many of them as I can as healthy and safe as possible.’

This comes a month after Parton was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame with Eminem, Lionel Richie, Carly Simon, Eurythmics, Duran Duran and Pat Benatar.

The honorees – voted on by more than 1,000 artists, historians and music industry professionals – ‘each had a profound impact on the sound of youth culture and helped change the course of rock’n’roll,’ said John Sykes, the chairman of the Rock Hall, in a statement Wednesday.

Back in: Parton, who initially resisted the honor, has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame.  Seen in 2015

Back in: Parton, who initially resisted the honor, has been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame. Seen in 2015

Parton shared a note of joy.

‘I am honored and humbled by the fact that I have been inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame,’ wrote the chart topping crooner.

‘Of course I will accept it gracefully. Thanks to everyone that voted for me and to everyone at the @rockhall. I will continue to work hard and try to live up to the honor. ‘

Back story: Parton had gone on social media to 'respectfully bow out' of the process, saying she didn't want to take votes away from the remaining nominees and had not 'earned that right.'  The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation responded by saying ballots had already been sent and it was up to the voters to decide if Parton was elected.  Parton later said she would accept an induction.  Seen in March

Back story: Parton had gone on social media to ‘respectfully bow out’ of the process, saying she didn’t want to take votes away from the remaining nominees and had not ‘earned that right.’ The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation responded by saying ballots had already been sent and it was up to the voters to decide if Parton was elected. Parton later said she would accept an induction. Seen in March

Parton had gone on social media to ‘respectfully bow out’ of the process, saying she didn’t want to take votes away from the remaining nominees and had not ‘earned that right.’

The Rock & Roll Hall of Fame Foundation responded by saying ballots had already been sent and it was up to the voters to decide if Parton was elected. Parton later said she would accept an induction.

To be eligible, artists are required to have released their first record 25 years prior to induction.

The hall also announced Wednesday that Judas Priest and Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis are getting the award for musical excellence and that Harry Belafonte and Elizabeth Cotten will be honored with the Early Influence Award.

Other artists and groups that failed this year for induction in the performer category are A Tribe Called Quest, Rage Against the Machine, Dionne Warwick, Carly Simon, Judas Priest, Beck, Kate Bush, DEVO, Fela Kuti, MC5 and the New York Dolls .

Parton is most associated with country music and is in the Country Hall of Fame, but she has performed songs with a rock feel. Artists who have made both the Rock Hall and Country Hall of Fame include Brenda Lee, Johnny Cash, Elvis Presley, Chet Atkins, Hank Williams and the Everly Brothers.

The induction ceremony will be held November 5 at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

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