2020 Impact Report: Advancing Innovation for Patients

The past year brought uncertainty and challenges that would have been hard to imagine. We are proud to say that even during this adversity, Friends of Cancer Research expanded our critical work for patients.

Our growing research partnerships represent new collaborative models and are catalyzing science in a way that no single organization could achieve alone. Our policy initiatives are leading to meaningful changes that accelerate the development of new medicines for patients. We do this by bringing together diverse partners — even competitors at times — toward collaborative, science-based solutions and build new models to accelerate cancer research and treatment.

We are proud to share with you our 2020 highlights and the strides we continue to make on behalf of patients and their loved ones. As we review our accomplishments of the past year, and look to the future of what we need to achieve, we would like to thank our Board of Directors, supporters, and partners, without whom our critical work for patients would not be possible.

As we embark on our 25th year, we’re going to keep moving the field forward toward personalized treatments, patient-centered healthcare, and the next generation of breakthrough therapies. We’ll continue to lift up the next generation of scientists and policymakers, and help guide science from idea to reality for patients.

Jeff Allen, PhD
President & CEO

Ellen V. Sigal, PhD
Chair & Founder

Marlene A. Malek, RN
Vice Chair & Co-founder

We Know Who We Work For

Friends has spent decades at the forefront of cancer research, uniting scientists, experts, advocates, and patients to improve meaningful cooperation. In 2020, together, we kept the field moving forward by pursuing personalized treatments, patient-centered healthcare, and the next generation of breakthrough therapies.

Our Power of Collaboration


attendees joined our events in 2020 to share, listen, and advocate


increase in the number of attendees at our events between 2019 and 2020


breakthrough therapy designations granted


active partnerships and growing

With Your Partnership, We Continue to Drive Progress…

We know that science, research, and policy are essential for patients, which is why we empower the next generation of pioneers. We advocate for smarter science and regulations to cultivate progress and discover new paths for innovation to succeed. In the process, we are proud to work alongside leaders in our field, doing whatever we can to advance cancer research and treatment.

Leading Groundbreaking Science

Advancing Innovative Policy from Idea to Reality

Breaking Down Barriers & Accelerating Progress

Listening, Sharing, & Advocating through Virtual Events

Looking to the Future

  • Expanding Friends’ largest scientific endeavors to unlock new frontiers in personalized medicine via our innovative research partnerships
  • Partnering with a new Administration and Congress to ensure forthcoming policy prioritizes patients
  • Charting a new role in patient engagement as we commit to further empowerment through education on clinical trials and confidence in science
  • Convening leaders across the biomedical landscape to design solutions to the most pressing challenges facing cancer research


The past year presented ample challenges, yet it also led us to bring our community together in new and exciting ways. These experiences affirmed the importance of the work in which we engage, every day, on behalf of patients, caregivers, and families. As we look ahead to 2021, our 25th anniversary year, we will mark this milestone with gratitude for our colleagues and supporters and with certainty that our work does indeed make a difference.

Thank you to our generous supporters and partners. Your support allows us to continue advancing treatments for patients every day. To donate, please visit www.friendsofcancerresearch.org/donate or reach out to Linda Ostermann at (202) 944-6700 or lostermann@focr.org