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Celebrating our 2023 Legacy Award Winner

2023 Legacy Award winner, Ali Klein
2023 Legacy Award Winner, Ali Klein

Riley Children’s Foundation is proud to announce Ali Klein as the 2023 Legacy Award winner for Riley Dance Marathon. This annual award recognizes one graduating college senior who has made significant contributions that will continue to elevate their school’s Riley Dance Marathon program years beyond their active involvement. The recipient practices altruism, demonstrates an ability to unify and mobilize those around them, and is inimitable to their respective program. Tyler Trent of Purdue University Dance Marathon was honored posthumously as the inaugural recipient in 2019.

Originally from Indianapolis, Ali recently graduated from Indiana University. Her Riley Dance Marathon journey began as a student at Herron High School, where her philanthropic efforts also earned her recognition as a Next Generation Philanthropist in 2019.

Ali became involved with Indiana University Dance Marathon as a freshman and moved up in leadership each year, ultimately serving as president for the 2022-2023 school year. “I discovered my passion for fulfilling the roles of management and leadership. I enjoyed coaching my team, finding ways to motivate them, and empowering them,” Ali said.

Seeing how joyfully Ali gives back to Riley Children’s Health, she shares that people can be surprised to learn that her own Riley story does not have a happy ending. Ali’s younger brother, Jack, passed away from Non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma when he was 10 years old. Jack’s memory, and the Klein family’s gratitude for the care he received, motivates Ali to support research in hopes of changing the outcome for other families. During her last Day of Hope, a fundraising push day, Ali shared about her brother’s upcoming birthday and challenged her peers to raise 17 dollars each in 17 minutes. In response, the organization raised over $9,000.

“I hope to have given a voice to all Riley kids who have passed away,” Ali said. “IUDM honoring my brother in 2022 alongside Ashley Louise Crouse and Ryan White touched my family and me in a way I could have never imagined. Knowing that I shared Jack’s legacy and that people knew his name gave me peace that my time in IUDM was done.”

On behalf of all of us at Riley Children’s Foundation, congratulations, Ali! We are grateful for all you’ve done for Riley kids and families.

Thirteen colleges fundraised for Riley Dance Marathon during the 2022-2023 school year. Indiana University Dance Marathon began in 1991 in memory of Riley kid Ryan White. Fueled by Ryan’s legacy, IUDM participants have raised more than $50 million for Riley. A majority of proceeds benefit pediatric research.