The Hale Family receives Dana-Farber’s Sidney Farber Medical Research Award

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Family honored for their dedication to supporting pancreatic cancer care and research

Dana-Farber Cancer Institute honored the Hale Family of Boston and Westport, Mass., on Thursday, November 2, by awarding them the Sidney Farber Medical Research Award. The award recognized Judith B. Hale, Karen and Rob Hale, and Elizabeth Hale Kendall and Richard Kendall for the family’s outstanding contributions, commitment, and service to Dana-Farber, especially through pancreatic cancer research and care. Both Judy and Karen are Dana-Farber Cancer Institute Trustees.  

The Hale Family’s support of Dana-Farber honors the memory of Judy’s late husband, Robert “Bob” T. Hale Sr., who was also a generous philanthropist and was treated at Dana-Farber for pancreatic cancer. The Hales are longtime supporters of Dana-Farber and their gifts have established the Robert T. Hale Sr. and Judith B. Hale Fund for Pancreatic Research and the Hale Family Center for Pancreatic Cancer Research.

From the Hale’s generosity, the Hale Family Center has grown dramatically in size and scope of work, from a small team to more than 100 total staff across 13 laboratories. As a result, Dana-Farber has established one of the most sophisticated and largest clinical trial programs for pancreatic cancer at any cancer center in the world, developing new therapies to target mutations in pancreatic cancers and working to harness the immune system to attack pancreatic cancers.

“We are honored to receive the Sidney Farber Medical Research Award, which becomes particularly meaningful to us during Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month,” said Judy Hale. Her son, Rob Hale, CEO of Granite Telecommunications, added, “We share Dana-Farber’s mission to eradicate pancreatic cancer and look forward to the continued discoveries in research and improvements in treatments through the Hale Family Center, with the hope to help patients and families in Boston and across the globe.”

“The Hale Family continues to be extremely generous to Dana-Farber and funding cancer research. We applaud the Hales for their dedication to accelerating pancreatic cancer research, translating discoveries into improved patient outcomes, and fostering collaboration at Dana-Farber and across Boston’s biomedical community,” said Laurie H. Glimcher, MD, president and CEO of Dana-Farber and the Richard and Susan Smith Professor of Medicine. “It is only fitting that they receive the Institute’s highest honor. Along with the entire Dana-Farber community, I congratulate the Hale Family on receiving this award.”

In 2021, Judy, Rob, and Karen Hale made a transformative $50 million gift to Dana-Farber, the largest single gift to pancreatic cancer research in the Institute’s history and one of the largest gifts to The Dana-Farber Campaign. With this gift, the Hale Family’s cumulative giving to Dana-Farber surpassed $80 million, making them the second largest individual donors to the Institute. The Hale Family also hosts additional annual fundraising events, and their company, Granite Telecommunications, has gifted several million dollars to Dana-Farber.

“The Hale Family Center for Pancreatic Cancer Research has allowed us to bring together experts in target discovery, functional genomics, chemical biology, computational biology, immunotherapy, and model system development, as well as pancreatic cancer experts in clinical roles—radiology, pathology, clinical trials. This collaborative research environment created a pipeline for innovation and translation of scientific discoveries to the clinic,” said Brian Wolpin, MD, MPH, Director of the Hale Family Center for Pancreatic Cancer Research and the Robert T. and Judith B. Hale Chair in Pancreatic Cancer at Dana-Farber.

The Sidney Farber Medical Research Award was established in 1968 in appreciation of the contributions Sidney Farber, MD, made to medicine and to the development and support of cancer care and research around the world. This award represents the Institute’s highest honor and is presented to individuals or groups who have made outstanding contributions to the field of cancer, either through research or public service.

News Category
Pancreatic Cancer

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Charles Fuchs, MD, MPH; Rob Hale; Karen Hale; Laurie H. Glimcher, MD; Judy Hale; Brian Wolpin, MD, MPH; Elizabeth Hale Kendall; Richard Kendall; Josh Bekenstein; and Andrew Aguirre, MD, PhD