publication date: Aug. 1, 2014

By Will Craft

The Oregon Health & Science University Knight Cancer Institute moved one step closer to meeting a spectacular fundraising goal.

The institution said it received a $100 million gift from an anonymous donor, leaving the institution 17 months to raise the remaining $82 million needed to match the $500 million challenge set by Nike co-founder Phil Knight and his wife, Penny.

In September 2013, the Knights pledged $500 million to OHSU, as long as the university raised the same amount within two years. (The Cancer Letter, Sept. 27, 2013)

So far OHSU has raised $418 million, with nearly a year-and-a-half left in the challenge, according to the campaign’s website.

The cancer center would use the combined $1 billion to help identify cancers in earlier stages.

The $100 million represents the largest private donation in the campaign thus far, and is the fourth-largest donation in the university’s history, OHSU officials said. In addition to over 5,000 individual donations to the campaign, the state of Oregon has also committed $200 million to institute facilities. The state’s contribution counts toward the matching funds.

“This gift is a tremendous vote of confidence in OHSU and the Knight Cancer Institute,” said Director Brian Druker in a statement. “It will enable us to work even more quickly on what we believe is the single most important unmet need in cancer care today—identifying cancers that will become deadly while they are still at a highly curable stage.

L. Keith Todd, president of the OHSU Foundation, thanked the donor.

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