Damon Runyon News

July 13, 2023

The Damon Runyon Cancer Research Foundation is pleased to announce that it will increase its Fellowship stipend by 15% over the award’s four-year term. Under the new terms, the Fellowship stipend will start at $70,000 and increase by $2,000 each year. Fellows will continue to receive an additional $2,000 each year for research-related expenses, for a total of $300,000 over the four years.

Damon Runyon programs are designed to address funding gaps and support today’s most promising young scientists as they launch careers in cancer research. The Foundation’s scientific advisers regularly evaluate their awards in light of inflation and other economic factors, recommending stipend increases as needed. The Board of Directors approved this most recent increase in recognition of the financial challenges currently faced by postdoctoral fellows, especially those living in high-cost geographic regions and with growing families.

“It's hard to overstate how much this change in salary means to me,” says Damon Runyon Fellow Hannah Grunwald, PhD. “I have so many ideas—so many cool areas of science that I want to explore in new ways. It's such a gift to have the opportunity to think unbounded by what the market wants us to focus on, and I'm so grateful for it.”

“Postdoctoral fellows are instrumental in advancing scientific knowledge in the U.S. and around the world, but it has grown even more evident in recent years that financial pressures deter promising researchers from continuing their scientific careers,” says Yung S. Lie, PhD, President and CEO of Damon Runyon. “We will continue to listen to our scientists and identify opportunities to make our Fellowship programs even stronger and more supportive.”

The Fellowship Award, designed to encourage high-risk, high-reward cancer research, provides postdoctoral scientists with independent funding to support their training as they embark upon their careers in the labs of leading senior investigators. Damon Runyon was among the first fellowship agencies to offer four full years of postdoctoral funding, in response to the financial pressures many scientists face at this point in their careers and in recognition of the lengthy training required to become a fully independent research scientist.

Learn more about the Damon Runyon Fellowship here.