Damon Runyon Blog

July 20, 2017

Fourteen years ago the Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation approved an application for a Damon Runyon-Lilly Clinical Investigator Award by a young researcher named Jedd Wolchok, MD, PhD of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York. Jedd wanted to study an emerging field of research called immunotherapy. At the time, the field was in its infancy and had as many supporters as skeptics. But Damon Runyon’s support of Jedd proved prescient, and he became a leader in the study and application of immunotherapy to his field of melanoma research and treatment.


Two years ago, Brent Bouchez, a legendary New York City advertising and marketing executive and founder of the firm BouchezPage, was diagnosed with melanoma and was successfully treated by Jedd at Memorial Sloan Kettering. Brent was a featured speaker at our 2017 Damon Runyon Annual Breakfast last month. Of his treatment, Brent said: “My body was able to fight an enemy it never could before, because of immunotherapy. And because of people like Jedd Wolchok, because of people like you in this room, people who believe in research and trying new things. People like you who believe in funding new ideas, even when there is a strong chance of failure. Because even in that failure there is learning. And learning is the key to success. And that learning is the key to me standing here today.”


Click here to view Brent’s inspiring story.