Students of the Year Milwaukee

Cousins' Cause | Cousins' Cause

Welcome to Our Fundraising Page!

Feb 05, 2020

We are extremely excited to participate as Co-Candidates for the 2020 Students of the Year program! Students of the Year is a seven-week initiative in which select high school students from around the country participate in a fundraising competition to benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. We are proud to support LLS and determined to raise money in honor of young patient heroes who are currently battling or are in remission from a form of blood cancer.

All donations are greatly appreciated and are tax-deductible. They'll not only support LLS-funded research but will help provide critical information and support for patients, and support advocacy for laws to ensure patients can access the care and treatments they need. 

In 2010, Elizabeth's brother, Liam, was diagnosed with Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Three and a half years later Liam rang the bell at Children's Hospital of Wisconsin. Today, he is a healthy seventh-grader at Christ King School in Wauwatosa and an active advocate for the mission of LLS.

In 2014, Georgia's dad, Bret, was diagnosed with throat cancer. A long year later, he was officially cancer-free and ready to go back to work and get back on the basketball court.

These were the hardest experiences we have ever been through, but we have learned a lot from them and we are extremely lucky that these two are still in our lives. As our parents, aunts, and uncles have become involved in supporting the fight against cancer, we are participating in the Students of the Year program to do our part in giving back. We will forever be grateful for everybody who has supported our family in one way or another.

Every dollar is a vote! The candidate that raises the most money at the end of the seven weeks is named Student of the Year. Our mission is to not only raise the most money but also to bring attention to blood cancers like leukemia, which is the most common form of cancer in children and teens. 

Since the early 1960s, five-year survival rates for many blood cancer patients have doubled, tripled or even quadrupled. Many LLS supported therapies not only help blood cancer patients but are helping patients with other cancers and serious diseases. In fact, drugs first approved for blood cancers are now approved to treat patients with stomach cancers, skin cancers, and autoimmune diseases like rheumatoid arthritis.

In order to make a change, we are determined to raise $50,000 to contribute to the mission of LLS. We need YOUR help in order to make a difference.

For more information about LLS, please visit

Georgia Barczak & Elizabeth Merz, DSHA Students, Team Cousins' Cause




  • Kristin Ferge

    Great cause!

  • The Klaus Family

    Thanks for your leadership and service, Elizabeth and Georgia!

  • Peggy Seegers-Braun

    Congratulations on your efforts! Best of luck reaching your goal!

  • Kris and Dan Nigro (Carly)

    Way to make a difference! Kris, Dan,Carly, Vinny, and Mitchell Nigro

  • Jane Dugan

    Happy to donate to such a great cause

  • Laurie Kalmer

    Amazing girls! 💕

  • The Slater Family

    Congratulations on this effort. Great cause and Good luck! The Slater Family

  • Jan Reed

    Thank you!

  • Tommie Bohl

    Hoping this allows other families to eventually never having to deal with cancer. What a wonderful cause you are standing up for!!!!

  • Kathleen Cullen Ritter

    Isla is our friend's 3 year old who is currently in treatment for AML Leukemia. Thank you so much for the important work you are doing!

  • Mary and Norm Merz

    So proud of you cousins! Stellar effort!❤️

  • Tom Jodi Gigi Holden Glunz

    Great cause and outstanding leadership! Thank you Georgia and Elizabeth!!

  • Brian and Sue Lanser

    Good luck in reaching your goal! It is a great cause.

  • Carmela Klaus

    Nice work, ladies! Way to show great leadership!

  • Romaine Bata

    Great cause and best wishes for your success.

  • The Clossey Family

    Appreciate you both for reminding us of this critical cause. Thank you for using your voices!

  • Diana Barkow

    Great job girls! Happy to help out such a wonderful cause that has touched the lives of so many.

  • Tom & Bridget Marx

    Always happy to help a great cause and great people- Georgia Barczak and Elizabeth Merz

  • Grace Elliott

    My niece, Gianna, was diagnosed with Leukemia at 13 months. Her chances of survival were not good and she was not expected to live past 5 years old. However, through a multitude of prayers, and the wonderful doctors at Children's hospital, and the courage of my brother and sister-in-law with the drug protocol that was recommended, I am happy to say that this year she will be 46 years old. She has been the light of all of our lives with her wonderful personality and attitude. I am glad to donate in her name and thank you for the opportunity to help others.

  • Mark Lancaster

    Sp proud of you gals!

  • Jack & Jon Brandt

    Way to go ladies! Proud of your effort and leadership.

  • The Anello Family

    We are honored to support your effort. Thank you for showing such great leadership!

  • PC

    Way to go girls!!! Uncle Buck

  • Kate & Pepe Michieli

    Good luck on your goal. We so remember the challenges that you both endured when your brother and dad fought their battles.

  • The Montgomery Family

    Good luck girls! We are proud of the wonderful work you are doing!

  • The Tyson Family

    We admire your spirit working for such an important cause. Good luck reaching your goal!

  • Ann & Eric Bachar

    Great cause, ladies.

  • Anonymous

    A worthy cause..

  • Anonymous

    Keep up the good work! -A future DSHA mom

  • Blackman Family


  • Tim Casey

    Excited to help support a great cause! Good luck girls!

  • The Langer Family

    Great job ladies!

  • Quesnell Family

    Well done Georgia and Elizabeth!

  • Renee Meneau

    In honor of Liam Merz and all the other kids who fight so courageously to beat this disease. ❤️❤️❤️

  • Rebecca Schmidt

    Good Job Ladies so proud of you both!

  • Keith and Tanya Baynes

    Thanks for all you are doing to support this great cause!

  • Jeff & Mary Johnson & Family

    Great work, girls! Good luck with your goal!

  • Amy Reno

    The Reno Family

  • Mary Czarnecki

    From Mary Czarnecki

  • The Novotny Family

    You guys should be very proud of yourselves - Joe, Kim, Grace, Jack & Will Novotny

  • Jennifer Litzau

    You can do it girls!!

  • Rob Grasse

    Rest in Peace, Roommate: Chris Dirks USNA'89

  • James Gunsalus

    Here’s to the fight against LLS.

  • Laura & Jim Hyland

    We too have family impacted with lymphoma, so we greatly appreciate your efforts. Incredible leadership ladies.

  • Dan and Mary Druml

    So proud of you! You are truly making a difference in finding a cure for leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma! Dan and Mary Druml

  • Boris Turcinovic

    Never give up! Never ever give up!

  • Todd Warnecke

    Looking forward to the basketball tournament!

  • Patrick Masterson

    Thanks for doing this great work!

  • Dan Leffler

    Great job girls!!! The Lefflers

  • Todd & Linda Daily

    Great job girls! My brother is now cancer free, so this is for him, for Liam for Bret and everyone else who fought and won or is fighting now.

  • Brian Froemming

    Thank you for starting a great cause and rallying together people in a positive way to create hope for so many others!

  • The Dugan Family

    Great work Georgia and Elizabeth!

  • Brian and Katie Dorrington

    What an amazing event! Thanks so much for doing this. Team Dorrington is happy to support the great cause!

  • The Martensson Family

    Wishing you the best of luck on meeting your goal!

  • Robert Simi

    In memory of Phillip and Marc Leering. Great, great event. So very proud of Georgia and Elizabeth and the entire Merz and Barczak Families. Very, very impressive event and boatload of work to pull something like this. Warmly, Mickey, Cole, Claudine and Bobby

  • Joan Zimmer

    In memory of my sister Anne Cunningham Keely, HA63 and grand-aunt of DSHA freshman Marcy Zimmer. Anne died in 2017 from lymphoma.

  • Natalie Forward

    This is important work ladies. Thank you for including us.

  • Paul Poblocki

    Great cause and excellent job ladies!

  • The Johnson Family

    Very impressed with you ladies! Great work!

  • Karlin Sprecher

    This is such an amazing thing that you both are doing!

  • Kelly Burmeister

    Way to go girls. Proud of you.

  • Brian & Kris Besler

    Great job, Georgia & Elizabeth!!

  • Jamie & Dave Rodgers

    Great effort girls!

  • Scott & Cindy

    Awesome Job Ladies! Scott & Cindy

  • Amy Dorley

    What an awesome thing u guys are doing!!:)

  • Christy & Bob Maranan

    Our dear friend Paula battles on. Thanks for time and effort.

  • Naomi & Mark Price

    Elizabeth and Georgia, you two are AMAZING!!!

  • Katie Konieczny

    Great work! I hope that you make the goal!

  • Mary Sega

    My grandson is a friend of Liam & I am pleased to support this extraordinary effort. God bless you !

  • The Breiner Family

    Great cause ladies! Thanks for continuing to bring awareness!

  • Steiner Family

    The Steiners

  • John Sweeney

    Great job E and Georgia. This is a great cause for some special people in your families.

  • Dugans


  • The Lane Family

    We love a great cause! You girls are an inspiration. XOXO

  • John Wendelberger

    Way to go, cousin power rocks!

  • Mark and Shelley Clausen

    Congrats on all your efforts! Happy to support both of you and this wonderful cause!

  • Mary Elizabeth Stern

    Every life Scott Garrett has touched is a little less joyful since his passing. His family and friends miss him constantly, but his spirit lives on through remembering him and fighting for a cure. This donation goes to show that we will never forget him and will do anything to stop more lives lost.

  • Synara Brown

    Way to go Elizabeth and Georgia! You are doing such a great thing!

  • The deGuzman Family

    Happy to help!

  • Tracy Dipiazza

    Great job girls - DiPiazza Family

  • Bob and Cindy Barczak

    Thanks for being so determined and awesome.

  • Bret and Kathleen Barczak

    You Go Girls!

  • Heather Moran Mansfield

    What a great team! Good luck girls on reaching your goal! :)

  • Mark and Stephanie Merz

    Great job ladies! We could not be more proud of you both and this cause.

  • Jill Schroeder

    So proud of you, Elizabeth! Thank you both for creating an opportunity to support such an important cause. Go girls!

  • South Milwaukee Lions Club

    Congratulations Catherine on being selected as a team member for LLS student of the Year campaign. This cause is very important to Lion's Clubs all over the world. The best to you in all your endevors. South Milwaukee Lions Club

  • The Filardo Family

    Happy to donate to a cause that has touched our lives in so many ways. Thank you girls for all the work you’re doing!!

  • Kalawa Family

    Good luck girls! You are doing a wonderful thing raising money for this great cause.

  • Ella Grinstein

    Georgia & Elizabeth, So proud of you girls! Sending love from the Grinstein Family- Elazar, Lili, Philippe & Ella

  • Amy, Ryan, Ian & Callum

    Very proud of your efforts!!!

  • The Long Family

    Great Job Georgia and Elizabeth!

  • Judy O'Connell

    You girls are awesome!

  • Jen Grilletta and Family

    Keep up the good work girls!

  • Jennifer Deslongchamps

    What a great cause. Good luck with your fundraising. The Deslongchamps Family

  • Kitty Miller

    Georgia and Elizabeth, So happy to help you achieve your goal. You are great examples to all of us. Kitty and Tom Miller

  • Colette & Raj Roychoudhury

    Love what you girls are doing! The World needs more of you😊

  • Bob & Ann Landt

    Great Job, Ladies!!!

  • Amber Tanty

    You girls are such an inspiration! Love it!

  • Jeff Snyder

    Good luck with your efforts!

  • Kate Kenney and Greta Schroeder

    Amazing cousins and outstanding young women! Greta and I are sending you both energy and prayers to help get to your goal of $50,000!

  • The Rise Family

    WOW, what a great cause! Happy to help you girls reach your goal!

  • The Grebe Family

    You girls are fantastic role models!

  • Aunt Monica & Uncle Scott

    You girls are an inspiration!

  • ronald Barczak

    Thank you Georgia and Elizabeth for getting involved and making a difference. Love to you , your families, the communities you reflect and to the greater Cancer fighting community . Important and vital work. Well done ....AND - Keep it up. !

  • Bev Lynn

    Miss you, Steve. Pancreatic cancer.

  • The Lagore Family

    Such an important cause-- thank you for all your amazing efforts!! <3 - Kathryn & family

  • Kathryn & Larry Devine

    God luck with the fundraising.

  • Greg Richburg

    Looking forward to the Basketball Tournament

Contact us by email or call 888.LLS.7177.