The Don Woodward ALS Research Grant Sponsorship

Who is Don Woodward?

Don Woodward is a legendary member of the San Luis Obispo, CA community. He was an incredibly talented football player, golfer, and businessman. His name is well known in the California car industry where he started his business career at one of his grandfather’s dealerships, Lompoc Honda. Don’s name is one that brings a smile to everyone’s face that knew him and “f*#k ALS” energy to those who understand he was taken when he had much more life to live. Don’s wife at the time, Maggie Woodward, selflessly cared for Don throughout his ALS journey. She remains a pillar of strength and provided Larry Fernandez valuable guidance when Larry was going through his caretaking experience with Martha. The burden of ALS on families is palpable. The Woodward and the Fernandez families had everything you need to make the most out of the time you have left: love, humor, and Don and Martha.

Friends of Don golf in the Martha Olson-Fernandez Foundation (MOFF) Annual Golf Tournament and the “Woody” tournament at the San Luis Obispo Country Club each year. His memory truly is kept alive by his family, friends, and the golfing community. His friends, John Ronca and Scott Dierks, work closely with MOFF. John has served on the MOFF board for the past 2 years.

Why does the Don Woodward ALS Research Grant exist?

The grant exists to connect the golfers and sponsors that participate in the MOFF Annual Golf Tournament fundraiser directly to an ALS lab. When Martha outlined MOFF’s mission in 2012, she wrote on a piece of paper that “All funds go to research.” This grant is our way of making sure the MOFF community stays rooted in our mission and that our donors feel that connection to the research projects that are creating potential therapies for this brutal disease.

What labs have received this grant money ($10,000) in the past?

2019: USC Ichida Lab for ALS (Dr. Justin Ichida)

2020: Duke University ALS Lab (Dr. Richard Bedlack)

2021: The ALS Cure Project at Lawrence Livermore Labs (Mike Piscotty)

How do I apply to have my lab considered to be the recipient of the Don Woodward ALS Research Grant?

Email and ask for our request for proposals (RFP) application. The deadline for proposal submissions is July 1st each year. Grants winners will be announced in September and grant funding will be distributed in February of the following year.

How do I become the Don Woodward ALS Research Grant Sponsor?

MOFF encourages any individual or company to become the Don Woodward ALS Research Grant Sponsor. Sponsors will have the opportunity to tour the ALS research lab that is selected and discuss the project with the researcher. Sign up to receive notifications from MOFF here. MOFF will announce the opening of registration for our annual golf tournament event in July. Once you receive notification of the golf tournament event, simply sign up via our event platform that will be listed in the email. Alternatively, email and announce your intention to be the sponsor.


A HUGE special thanks goes out to Larry Fernandez who has been the Don Woodward ALS Research Grant Sponsor for the past 3 years. Thank you, Larry for your continued support!!