Yet More Money for Cancer Research from a Media Mogul You’ve Never Heard Of

Two hundred and forty-seven people have received awards from the Sidney Kimmel Foundation for Cancer Research Kimmel Scholars program, and now 15 more have gotten the nod. The foundation, which was founded by Sidney Kimmel, president of Sidney Kimmel Entertainment and Giving Pledge signatory, and it exists to support research into the biology of cancer.

That means basic research. That means supporting the rapid translation of scientific concepts into preventative applications for the clinic and hospital room. That means novel, untried approaches using brand-new treatment technologies. Good stuff.

We confess we hadn’t heard of Sidney Kimmel at all before we heard about these awards, but apparently, the guy—and the foundation that bears his name—are something else indeed. The Sidney Kimmel Foundation, which was founded in 1993, has done almost nothing but give to create cancer centers and fund research. It's made more than $550 million in gifts.

Perhaps the foundation’s most significant initiative was its establishment of the Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins University. There’s also the founding of the Sidney Kimmel Prostate and Urologic Cancers Center at Memorial Sloan-Kettering in New York, and the Kimmel Cancer Center at Thomas Jefferson University in Philadelphia.

Oh, and don't forget: Sidney Kimmel is also responsible for the British comedy Death at a Funeral and its American remake.

Meanwhile, the 15 recipients of this award receive $200,000 apiece over two years to jumpstart their research and further their careers. "A frequent comment from the grant recipients is that they might never have achieved such success without this early funding from the Kimmel Foundation," said Kimmel.