Honoring Lynn Sage
Lynn Sage was a wife, mother, daughter, colleague, friend, and a shocking statistic when, at the age of 33, she was diagnosed with breast cancer. At the age of 39, with her spirit and dignity intact, she succumbed to this disease.
In 1985, to honor her struggle and applaud her strength, a small group of Lynn’s family and friends established a foundation to fund breast cancer research.
The Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Foundation established a partnership with Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University, which helped open the Lynn Sage Comprehensive Breast Center. Today, it is the largest program of its kind in the Midwest, with more than 90,000 patient visits annually and a facility providing women and men the most up-to-date technological and medical advances in the field of breast cancer.
35 years later and over $40 million invested.
The survival rate for breast cancer is almost 99% when detected early. However, one in eight women still experience the shock of a breast cancer diagnosis. Research is needed to eradicate this horrible disease.
The Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation was established to preserve Lynn Sage’s memory while supporting state-of-the-art patient care, exceptional educational outreach programs and the kind of revolutionary research that brings us closer to a cure.
The LSCRF affiliated with Northwestern Memorial Hospital and an initial pledge of $1 million helped establish the Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Program. Today, the Lynn Sage Comprehensive Breast Center is the largest program of its kind in the Midwest.
The LSCRF made a $5 million, five-year pledge to support continued development of patient care, education and research initiatives in the breast cancer program. This commitment supported both the clinical breast cancer center at Northwestern Memorial Hospital and the breast cancer research program of The Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University.
$2.5 million was committed to the Bluhm Breast Cancer Early Detection and Prevention Fund, funded by Mr. Neil Bluhm, which supports detection strategies (such as: MRI, genetics, hormones and other diagnostic methods) for patients at high risk for breast cancer.
The Foundation made a $2.5 million pledge in support of oncology fellowships and research into areas like: the effect of breast cancer on families, the use of cyclosporine in the treatment of breast cancer and the expansion of the breast cancer database physicians can utilize for research.
The Lynn Sage Foundation established the Lynn Sage Scholars Program to advance innovative research by investing in talented, young doctors with novel theories.
In 2013, LSCRF made a pledge of $3 million, which supported the following initiatives: (1) oncology fellowships, (2) crucial research and education projects at Northwestern Medicine, and (3) the development of a Breast Cancer Survivorship Program, led by Sofia Garcia, PhD, who serves as the Director of Translational Research in the Cancer Survivorship Institute of the Lurie Cancer Center.
In 2014, LSCRF directed a portion of its most recent pledge toward community outreach programs—specifically, projects addressing disparity of care among women with breast cancer.
In 2016, the foundation completed its support for the Breast Cancer Survivorship Program and made yet another generous pledge of $3 million. This pledge is continuing LSCRF’s support of fellowships, research studies, and educational programs, as well as the community-based projects focused on disparity of breast cancer care. In addition, LSCRF’s philanthropy established the Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation Breast Cancer OncoSET Program at the Lurie Cancer Center. This landmark program combines oncology with genomic tumor profiling, in order to provide a more personalized, precision medicine-based treatment approach to women with breast cancer. By gaining knowledge of the genetic abnormalities specific to each patient’s tumor, researchers and clinicians can make strides toward developing novel, promising, highly customized treatment plans.
In 2018, in addition to supporting fellowships, educational symposia, and research projects, the foundation completed it’s multi-year transformative gift to fund the establishment of the Breast OncoSET program, an extension of Lurie Cancer Center’s OncoSET (Sequence, Evaluate, Treat) precision medicine program. Under the leadership of internationally recognized breast cancer expert and LSCRF Medical Advisory Board member, Massimo Cristofanilli, MD, the Breast OncoSET program has developed a diagnostic laboratory with state-of-the-art technology that allows physicians to make informed and highly precise treatment decisions for each patient, including those with metastatic cancer that have become resistant to treatment.
In 2019, LSCRF continued it’s commitment to funding ground-breaking research, seven fellowships, and travel grants for physicians from around the globe to attend the Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Research Symposium. In addition, we renewed our commitment to seek ways to address the disparity of care issues for breast cancer patients in Chicago. Lastly, we were proud to be recognized by @ Properties as their partner of the @ Properties/@Gives Back 2019 Giving Campaign.
In 2021, Lynn Sage Cancer Research Foundation and The Lynn Sage Foundation proudly joined together to focus their efforts against breast cancer. Dedicated to funding research and education, Lynn Sage Breast Cancer Foundation works to prevent breast cancer and improve outcomes for those living with breast cancer.