Kansas City-area philanthropists Don and Adele Hall have donated $5 million to support Kansas University’s cancer fighting efforts.
The gift will support two different areas: $4.5 million will support cancer prevention research, and $500,000 will be directed toward KU’s Institute for Advancing Medical Innovation for drug development and treatments for pediatric cancer patients in partnership with Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo.
Roy Jensen, director of the KU Cancer Center, said the $4.5 million will go toward recruitment of new cancer researchers at the center, and would enable the cancer center to provide matching funding to complement funds from the Kansas Bioscience Authority.
The KU Cancer Center is scheduled to submit its application for National Cancer Institute designation next month. Jensen said he anticipated that by then the cancer center would have raised the remaining $1.5 million needed to reach its announced $61 million goal by the time KU submits the application.
He said he appreciated the individual support of the Halls, which added to the previous support of the Hall Family Foundation that donated a Fairway building to the cancer center. That building is being renovated with funds from the Johnson County Education and Research Triangle sales tax.
“I just don’t know of two people whose actions consistently speak louder than their words,” Jensen said.
Dale Seuferling, president and CEO of the KU Endowment Association, said the cancer fundraising effort has been successful.
The nearly $60 million raised so far includes support from several major donors in addition to the Halls, including Kansas City philanthropist Annette Bloch; Joe and Jean Brandmeyer, of El Paso, Texas; and the Kansas Masonic Foundation, among many other major donors.
Seuferling said hundred of individuals have supported the effort as well on a smaller scale.
“Of course, our efforts will continue on after the application is submitted,” Seuferling said, saying that they will continue to seek support for faculty members, research scientists and other cancer-fighting efforts.