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"The results were overwhelming! The professional presesentation gave our smal business the look of a a major corporation..."


American Cancer Society (ACS) 2008 Annual Report
National cancer organization providing cancer control
programs and funding cancer research


To showcase the American Cancer Society’s progress towards its mission — to eliminate cancer as a major health problem by preventing new cancer, saving lives, and diminishing suffering, through research, education, advocacy, and service.

WDC Solution:

Share the human face of the American Cancer Society. This includes dedicated ACS volunteers in the medical, research and business communities as well as survivor groups. This humanization occurs through their personal shared stories.

The theme of ‘Access’ encompasses the many services the Society provides the community at large: programs and services that deliver support, funding for cancer research, a network of offices, 800 numbers and a website sharing 24/7 information; lectures and screening information providing Care; outreach to all communities through diverse channels [insured and uninsured], advocacy speaking out on public policy issues to state and national agencies.


Gallery spaces with their doorways, hallways and windows served as abstract metaphors for ‘access’, the report’s theme. Black and white photography, a change from the generally expected color imagery, created powerful and sensitive portraits capturing the qualities of singularity of purpose, determination, kindness, selflessness – all qualities inherent in this group of volunteers.

For this annual report, we deliberately moved away from rectilinear graphic guidelines employed as the organizational standard. Typography was treated in a more organic, less rigid fashion to embody the fluidity and responsiveness of ACS service and information delivery.


  • The biggest challenge was locating environments to photograph volunteers in. A variety of known contacts and multiple brainstorming sessions were held to locate the final Southern California and Northern California gallery spaces, provided at no cost or highly discounted rates.
  • We needed to photograph the subjects in a minimally invasive manner, allowing the galleries to continue operating during regular business hours.


  • 100% of respondents surveyed felt that the 2008 Annual Report effectively communicates the efforts of the Society in a straight forward, user-friendly format
  • 92% feel that the report represents the California Division in a comprehensive manner
  • Executive comments collected:
    “Diverse representation within the Report generated broader interest by this Leadership Council.”

    “Looks great! I love the volunteer profiles, and am glad it is geographically diverse.”

    “I think it is a wonderful piece that I am proud to use: professional, informative, and heartwarming.”

    “This particular issues is quite beautiful; black and white cover was dramatic and eye-catching ... congratulations to all who were responsible for the creation of the Report!”

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