To be multi-faceted is to be contemporary. Nancy Davis is nothing if not that. Dividing her time between parenthood and philanthropy, activism and design, Nancy Davis has dedicated her life to inspiring hope in the lives of others. In this she finds peace and love – the inspiration for her jewelry collection and clothing line. Diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis at the age of thirty three while on a skiing vacation, the young mother of three was told by doctors to go home, go to bed, and wait for the disease to take its toll. But Nancy didn’t have time – she had children to raise.
Determined to learn all she could about combating the disease, Nancy traveled around the world searching for some form of advice from doctors, some hope that she and those who her shared her affliction, would have tools – medication or otherwise – to aid in their fight against this debilitative disease. Finding only duplicity in the research being performed by various experts and recognizing the challenges inherent in the competitive arena that is medical research, in 1993 Nancy launched the Nancy Davis Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis, a not-for-profit dedicated to eradicate the disease. To date the foundation has raised in excess of $30 Million to fund the Center Without Walls, a collaboration of the nation’s seven foremost MS research institutions. To participate in the initiative doctors are required to, as Davis States, “communicate, not duplicate.” With the centers she funds, seven different drugs to fight the progression of MS have been brought to market.
Every year since the inception of her foundation, Nancy has co-hosted the annual fundraiser Race to Erase MS with Tommy Hilfiger. In 2002, with major rumblings around the world, she and Tommy determined to have a theme: Peace & Love to Erase MS. States Davis: “The feeling was to take us back to a time in our world when peace and love was a simple, powerful message.” The event’s symbol became a heart with a peace sign nestled in the middle. As a thank you gift to performers Natalie Cole, Donna Summer and Sela Ward, Nancy made necklaces bearing the powerful symbol. Upon seeing the jewelry, many in attendance wanted to learn where they could find more for their family and friends. And thus, Peace & Love Jewelry by Nancy Davis was born.
After an exclusive launch at Saks Fifth Avenue, the Peace & Love collection now includes good luck icons and semi-precious stones as well as the signature 18 karat white gold icon, encrusted with diamonds. The now iconic pieces can be seen on the likes of Halle Berry, Brooke Shields, Nicole Richie, Hilary Duff, Sharon Osborne, and Avril Lavigne, amongst others. For men, the icon has been interpreted in cufflinks bearing peace signs, Buddhas, and elephants with raised trunks, in 18 karat gold with diamonds. The cufflinks are worn by personalities Tommy Hilfiger, Bill Mahr, Don Henley and Elton John amongst others. Ever conscious of her primary concern, Davis has allocated a portion of proceeds from the collection to the Nancy Davis Foundation for Multiple Sclerosis’ Center Without Walls.
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