Horses and Hope, Charity Partner for 2023 Kentucky Oaks Survivors Parade, Hosts Racetrack Clinic Director Dedra Hayden as Special Ambassador

Horses and Hope, an initiative of the Kentucky Cancer Program to increase cancer awareness, education, screening and treatment referral among Kentucky’s signature horse industry workers and their families, many of who are uninsured and medically underserved.

Dedra Hayden, Horses and Hope ambassador, University of Louisville associate professor of nursing, director of the Kentucky Racing Health Services Center and cancer survivor

Horses and Hope will be on the national stage once again as a charity partner for the Kentucky Oaks Survivors Parade and receive a generous donation.

Hayden will serve as a special ambassador for Horses and Hope at the Kentucky Oaks, walking in the parade as a volunteer, and will be available for interviews on Oaks Day.

Hayden is an advocate for racetrack workers and the lifesaving cancer screenings provided through UofL Health by Horses and Hope as director of the Kentucky Racing Health Services Center, which provides health care to backside workers in the Thoroughbred horse racing industry. Hayden also is a cancer survivor.

Oaks Day, Friday, May 5

Churchill Downs, 700 Central Ave.

Horses and Hope is a project of the Kentucky Cancer Program to increase cancer education, screening and treatment referral among Kentucky’s horse industry population and other groups. Screenings and events are held across the state in collaboration with the Horses and Hope Cancer Screening Van operated by the UofL Health – Brown Cancer Center. For more information, call 1-877-326-1134 or visit

The Kentucky Oaks Survivors Parade celebrates breast and ovarian cancer survivors and encourages those still fighting cancer as they march on Churchill Downs’ historic racetrack prior to the running of the Longines Kentucky Oaks. The 2023 Survivors Parade will honor 149 survivors and fighters.

Video on Horses and Hope is available here. No-limit permissions to use granted by the Kentucky Cancer Program.

About the University of Louisville
In 2023, the University of Louisville celebrates its quasquibicentennial, the 225th anniversary of the 1798 beginnings of higher education in Louisville. One of the nation’s first city-owned, public universities, UofL today is a vital ecosystem that creates thriving futures for students, our community and society. As one of only 79 universities in the United States to earn recognition by the Carnegie Foundation as both a Research 1 and a Community Engaged university, we impact lives in areas of student success and research and innovation, while our dynamic connection with our local and global communities provides unparalleled opportunities for students and citizens both. The university serves as an engine that powers Metro Louisville and the commonwealth and as a classroom for UofL’s more than 23,000 students, who benefit from partnerships with top employers and a wide range of community service opportunities. To learn more, visit

Prior to Oaks Day: Jill Scoggins, 502-650-2624,
Oaks Day: Pam Jennings, 502-419-8053,