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Cancer Research Foundation expanding presence in St. Louis

Matthew Johnson

CHICAGO (August 10, 2021) — For over half a century, the Cancer Research Foundation (CRF) has been funding cutting edge cancer research in the City of Chicago, mainly through its relationship with the University of Chicago.  In the past decade, it has grown to support other Comprehensive Cancer Centers, including Northwestern University and the Siteman Center at Washington University in St. Louis.  In an effort to further expand its footprint in St. Louis, the foundation has tapped well-known business and community leader Mark Mantovani as its newest board member.

Mr. Mantovani was formerly Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer of Ansira, a data and analytics-based diversified marketing services business.  He served in that role from 2000-2014 and continued as Chairman through 2016.  Prior to his management responsibilities for Ansira, Mark was co-founder and principal in the St. Louis law firm of Behr, Mantovani, McCarter & Potter.  Mr. Mantovani has been active in numerous civic and charitable activities including the St. Louis Zoo, St. Louis Repertory Theater, Quincy University, the International Office of Boys Hope/Girls Hope, and many other organizations.  In addition, he was a candidate for the Democratic nomination for St. Louis County Executive in 2018 and 2020.

I’m a strong proponent of the innovative mentality the Cancer Research Foundation applies to the research it supports and look forward to bringing that same big-thinking mindset to help increase its work in St. Louis as its first Director from our region,” said Mark.  “The CRF has shown a growing commitment to funding in St. Louis and I’m honored to be selected to help propel its presence further.”

The Cancer Research Foundation began funding at Washington University in St. Louis in 2012, and over the past nine years has funded $1.2 million at the Siteman Center, to 14 cancer researchers.

“We are delighted to have Mark join us in this critical work,” said Zanna Nikitas, CRF’s Board Chair.  “The Cancer Research Foundation is comprised of passionate, experienced, and generous civic leaders who have raised millions for cancer research.  Together, we believe we can have an even greater impact on cancer research in Chicago, in St. Louis, and beyond.”

About Cancer Research FoundationThe Cancer Research Foundation was founded in 1954 to support early career researchers and novel ideas in cancer research with the hope of contributing to “Transformative Events” in the prevention, treatment, and cures of cancer.   The Cancer Research Foundation has made a point of taking “long-shot” bets with relatively small amounts of grant money, leveraging the collective experience in the Foundation.  We are “cancer research venture philanthropists,” making early investments in ideas that are often difficult to fund through more traditional sources.  The CRF currently funds Comprehensive Cancer Centers at the University of Chicago, Northwestern University and the Siteman Cancer Center at Washington University in St. Louis.  To learn more, visit www.cancerresearchfdn.org.