When Jane and Fred Jamieson decided to give $1 million to The Dana-Farber Campaign last year, it was the latest example in a long history of the Jamieson Family supporting the Institute’s work in women’s cancers. Jane, an Institute Trustee since 2000, has seen Dana-Farber grow in leaps and bounds over the years, and is especially following the work happening at the Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers.
The Susan F. Smith Center for Women’s Cancers was the vision of the late Susan F. Smith, an Institute Trustee and steady force behind an effort to unite the clinical and research strengths of Dana-Farber’s breast and gynecologic cancer programs and increase opportunities for scientific collaboration and translational research. When Jane first became acquainted with Dana-Farber in 1997, one of the first people she met was Eric P. Winer, MD, who was at that time the chief of the Division of Breast Oncology at the Smith Center, and recently stepped down as chief clinical development officer, senior vice president of medical affairs, and Thompson Chair in Breast Cancer Research at Dana-Farber. Jane’s conversations with Winer about the pressing need for more research inspired her first gift to Dana-Farber and women’s cancers.
That first interaction sparked a decades-long partnership with Dana-Farber. Jane is one of the founding co-chairs of the Susan F. Smith Center Executive Council, which supports the Smith Center’s work through education, fundraising, and advocacy initiatives. The center has since grown into one of the most comprehensive and advanced programs of its kind, pushing the frontier of research by developing innovative therapies and setting cancer care standards for physicians across the globe.
This latest gift establishes the Jamieson Family Fund for Early Career Breast Cancer Researchers, which will go towards training researchers starting out in their careers. Jane wanted to ensure this gift would support the Smith Center’s faculty. “I have had the opportunity to see the team I met 10 to 15 years ago mature and develop into fantastic clinicians and researchers— into a world-class team,” said Jamieson. “Part of their mission is to support the next generation, and I am hoping this gift will help to do just that.” Supporting and developing exceptional expertise is central to the Institute’s mission and is a key strategic priority of The Dana-Farber Campaign.
Every year, two early career researchers will be selected to receive funding from the Jamieson Family Fund for their innovative research in women’s cancers. “I am extraordinarily appreciative and grateful for Jane’s partnership and friendship over the years,” said Winer. “This gift from Jane and Fred will support our pipeline of physician-scientists and the innovative work—often high-risk, high-reward investigations—they will undertake to change the future of breast cancer.”
When talking about her long history with Dana-Farber, Jane reflects on how exciting it has been to watch the Smith Center evolve. She especially values the opportunity she had to work with Susan Smith. “One thing I appreciated about Mrs. Smith is that she never lost her passion and commitment,” she said. “She was always focused on the future.”