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Bolingbrook Adventist staff members shed 'Movembeards' after monthlong effort

Published: Friday, Dec. 6, 2013 10:37 a.m. CDT • Updated: Friday, Dec. 6, 2013 1:38 p.m. CDT
(Bill Ackerman -
Paul Gill gets his beard modified from full face to goatee on Monday in a Movember shave event, to raise awareness of men's health issues. Bill Ackerman -
(Bill Ackerman -
Mike Koerting of Bolingbrook checks the mirror after getting a shave on Monday during the Movember shave event to raise awareness of men's health issues. Bill Ackerman -
(Bill Ackerman -
Justin Gatewood of Master Barbers in Bolingbrook shaves Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital ICU manager Len Orlowski in a Movember shave event to raise awareness of men's health issues. Bill Ackerman -

BOLINGBROOK – Furry faces are no more at Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital.

On Monday morning, Justin Gatewood of Master Barbers in Bolingbrook treated 11 of the hospital’s leadership team members to hot lather shaves after the men let their facial hair run wild for the 30 days of “Movember.”

One-by-one, the band of bearded brothers entered a second-floor outpatient room, returning with a smile and a clean shaven face.

“This was my first Movember, and it was a really fun experience,” said ICU Manager Leonard Orlowski, who opted to rekindle the mustache-soul patch look. “I received a lot of questions, but it opened the door for me to tell people that it’s for a good cause.”

Adventist Bolingbrook Hospital Facilities Manager Paul Gill echoed his fellow Movem-bro’s sentiments.

“It’s a really effective way to increase advocacy efforts,” Gill said. “November falls right after Breast Cancer Awareness Month, so the timing is perfect.”

The annual beard and mustache movement – in which participants grow facial hair to raise awareness and funding for men’s health issues such as testicular and prostate cancer – just finished its 10th official month-long celebration.

But among the Adventest Bolingbrook Hospital leadership team, the tradition began last year when CFO Michael Murrill suggested that staff grow Movembeards in order to increase advocacy and camaraderie.

“Movember is something that I have done with my friends for about four years,” Murrill said. “I thought it would not only be a good way to increase awareness regarding men’s health at the hospital, but also a good bonding experience for the leadership team.”

Murrill explained that while most of the team had heard about Movember “in passing,” few recognized its significance and impactful reach.

A handful of men were on board with last year’s efforts and a few more have jumped on board this year, Murrill said, adding that he has seen a dramatic spike in the amount of Movembeards grown in the Bolingbrook community during the last couple years.

Murrill plans to continue the annual tradition at Adventist Bolingbrook next year, possibly increasing the participant pool and adding more events.

Murrill, Gill and Orlowski were joined by leadership team members Herman McKenzie, Michael Koerting, Anthony Nowosielski, Fernando Gruta, Derek Cazeau, Kenneth Rose and Jerry Staley.

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