Immune to Cancer: The CRI Blog




Follow Along as Philanthropist Lance Kawaguchi Treks to the South Pole for Cancer Research 

There are a variety of ways to raise money for Cancer Research Institute (CRI) to support cancer immunotherapy research. Some people host golf tournaments, while others run in marathons. However, banker-turned-philanthropist and CRI advisor Lance Kawaguchi is undertaking a fundraising approach all his own: trekking to the South Pole Sunday, December 24, and lasting about 10 days. You can follow Lance’s journey on social media by following the hashtags #SouthPoleTrek4Cancer and #RaiseTheFlagForCancer. 

“I wanted to prove to everyone that one act can have multiple benefits,” Lance said at the Nasdaq closing bell on Monday, December 18. “I reached out to 23 great charities and convinced them to jump on board. I wanted to highlight the Cancer Research Institute, which has invested over $515M (for cancer immunotherapy research) over the past 70 years.” 

All funds CRI raises through Lance’s #SouthPoleTrek4Cancer will go directly towards potentially life-saving pancreatic cancer immunotherapy research. Lance’s mother passed away from pancreatic cancer in 2016, and in her final months, urged him to, “do something for the greater good.” That is what caused Lance to pivot from corporate banking to leading a non-profit cancer organization in Australia, the Cure Brain Cancer Foundation. His trek to the South Pole is an extension of the journey he has made since his career transition into the non-profit cancer space. 

“We are thrilled that Lance is using his unique position as a philanthropist to take a journey to the South Pole to help raise funds for cancer immunotherapy research,” says Jill O’Donnell-Tormey, PhD, CRI’s CEO and director of scientific affairs. “It is not every day that someone helps fundraise for us in such a distinct way, and we hope others will follow his example. This sort of undertaking can propel others to fundraise in their own way – this is critical to helping accelerate progress for cancer immunotherapy research.” 

“At CRI, we are always happy to have engaging and enterprising fundraisers help us raise money for cancer immunotherapy research,” says Jay Campbell, managing director, CRI Clinical Accelerator and Venture Fund. “Lance’s dedication exemplifies how anyone can make an impact in cancer research by taking initiative. I hope his undertaking can serve as an inspiration for others to choose to make a positive inroad in cancer research, by supporting this critical research in whatever way, shape, or form they can.” 

Lance has previously stated that he has been impressed with CRI’s scientific leadership and singular focus on cancer immunotherapy research. If his story moves you the way it has moved others, there are a plethora of ways to get involved with CRI to help fundraise for cancer immunotherapy research. Whether you are undertaking a rigorous trek to the South Pole or donating to CRI for the first time, we thank you for helping us create a world immune to cancer. 

Want to do something big for pancreatic cancer? Make a donation to Lance Kawaguchi’s South Pole Trek today. 

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