Long Term Volunteer Fighter Against Pancreatic Cancer


Few Have Given More Time Than Mattress Firm’s Naomi Jensen

Written By Julia Brabant
June 2020

Much of the success of the Seena Magowitz Foundation have been driven by its dedicated volunteers. Few people have given more through the years than Mattress Firm’s Naomi Jensen, who not only donates her own time, but has encouraged countless others to do the same.

A one-time employee of Seena Magowitz Foundation Founder and CEO Roger Magowitz’ Mattress Discounters stores in the 1990s and early 2000s, Naomi began helping the foundation host its signature annual fundraiser, the Seena Magowitz Foundation Golf Classic, a few years after its launch. She pitched in wherever possible, aiding Tournament Director Liz McBeth on administrative and event-planning efforts, among other duties, and soliciting volunteers from the bedding industry and beyond to donate their own time and resources to the event.

As the affair grew in size and scope, so, too, did Naomi’s contributions. After signing on at Mattress Firm, she helped encourage a whole new set of colleagues to attend foundation events and volunteer their own energy and talents for the cause. Many of them also became financial supporters, helping fund life-changing clinical trials under the direction of Dr. Daniel Von Hoff, one of the nation’s most prolific pancreatic cancer oncologists and researchers.

“The bedding and furniture industries have really stepped up to support the foundation,” Naomi said. “These are businesses that usually compete with one another, so it’s great to see the camaraderie and the whole industry coming together for the same cause.”

As a longtime Seena Magowitz Foundation Golf Classic attendee, Naomi has seen firsthand how the funds generated by it help pave the way for groundbreaking pancreatic cancer research that lengthens and enhances lives.

“Watching things progress from one year to the next is so inspiring,” she said. “Seeing patients year after year – some of whom were given months to live – it makes you so grateful for the work of Dr. Von Hoff and his team, and for the regulars and newcomers who give their time and resources each year to help make it happen.”

Naomi also believes raising awareness and expanding treatment options benefits not only pancreatic cancer patients, but those facing any form of cancer. Many members of her own family have received cancer diagnoses, so her dedication to furthering research efforts has personal as well as professional roots.

“Roger’s passion and commitment to the foundation and pancreatic cancer research is so admired,” she said. “I’m honored that he asked me to participate.”