Our Story

Stickers and the State of Hockey

It all started with one question during the 2017-2018 hockey season, “Can we get those stickers for our helmets?” It happened while I was watching a Minnesota Wild game on TV with my son.

My name is Matt Feyen and at the time I was managing my son’s hockey team. My first intention was to buy them so I went to NHL.com, no luck. Then I did a search on the site and found the NHL Assist program for hockey fights cancer which put me in touch with our local American Cancer Society (ACS). A couple days later we had a website for fundraising, helmet decals, the lavender tape and printed placards.

After we had our hockey fights cancer game, where we raised just under $900 I stopped by the ACS to drop off the left over supplies. It was essentially the end of the hockey season and I was informed that our team raised the most money of any team in the country and more than half of what was raised by the campaign in Minnesota. I was a bit thrown back that the State of Hockey couldn’t do better than that. I shared my thoughts with the ACS representative who agreed, but said they had a very successful initiative with the basketball coaches and not enough resources to do much more. I agreed to connect with him before the next season to help get more done.

My Inspiration

I lived with my Grandmother and Grandfather for a few years after I graduated from high school. Part of the reason that I ended up there was to help around the house because my Grandfather’s health was not great at the time. What I truly enjoyed most was sneaking Grandma banana splits from Culver’s after Grandpa, who was diabetic, had gone to bed.

What I witnessed over those years was truly amazing. My Grandmother was full of love and so very strong both physically and emotionally. If it wasn’t for her we surely would have lost Grandpa much sooner. When I think about just how strong love can be, all I have to do is think about her.

When Grandma passed away, she asked for us to support the American Cancer Society and I always did when I had the chance and always will.

Then there was Nan. Nan was my fifth boss in the six years that I worked at Mayo Clinic. The first four bosses I had were the result of the organization constantly shifting around me. Nan was the first boss that I had pursued.

I first met Nan when I was assigned to a project that was intended to leverage Customer Relationship Management technology to improve the patient experience and enhance our connection with patients. I was the representative with the technical expertise. Nan was the Administrative Leader of Mayo Clinic Rochester and the executive sponsor of the project.

Nan Sawyer, Mentor

Nan was simply amazing. She led the team with a strength without using her role or title. She demanded the best performance and held people accountable to it without ever asking for it or showing dismay when it was not delivered. She would make sure that mistakes were learned from and not repeated. Frankly, she scared the crap out of me and I didn’t really know why.