The Evan Schumacher Fund for Rare Cancer Research

The Evan Schumacher Fund for Rare Cancer Research honors Evan’s vision for a different approach to a cure.

The projects supported by the Schumacher Fund represent novel and holistic approaches to researching rare cancers, incorporating cutting edge tools with support for bright young scientists who are taking the risks necessary to identify effective treatments for rare cancers.

Scroll to the bottom of this page to make a donation to the Fund. 

UPDATE: In 2022, the Evan Schumacher Fund for Rare Cancer Research was proud to provide its third grant of $50,000. This new grant is made in support of a research team led by Nabeel Bardeesy, PhD, of the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center.  

This project will analyze existing collections of human cholangiocarcinoma samples as well as genetically engineered mouse models created by the Bardeesy Lab, using technology that allows researchers to examine specific features of the tumor cells, immune cells and all of the other components of the tumor.

 By analyzing a large number of tumor specimens and mouse models, the project seeks to gain unprecedented insights into how different gene mutations and various risk factors determine the specific biological features of cholangiocarcinoma, leading to a better understanding of how to effectively treat patients with cholangiocarcinoma in an individualized and personalized way. 

This grant was selected and awarded after evaluating multiple projects in the cholangiocarcinoma research space, with scientific review from TargetCancer Foundation’s Scientific Advisory Board.

Previous Evan Schumacher Fund Grant Recipients

Click below to learn more. 

2020: Dr. Liron Bar-Peled

In 2020, the Evan Schumacher Fund for Rare Cancer Research was proud to provide its second grant of $50,000. This new grant is made in support of Liron Bar-Peled, PhD, of the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and Harvard Medical School.  

While many new treatments are being developed that target specific genomic mutations driving cholangiocarcinoma, there is still a need to develop drugs for patients who do not have these mutations. Dr. Bar-Peled’s work uses advanced chemical proteomic technology to identify proteins which may present new opportunities for treatment. This new grant will support Dr. Bar-Peled’s efforts to map the landscape of protein druggability in cholangiocarcinoma, creating a launching pad for the development of new therapies to treat cholangiocarcinoma.

In the above video, Dr. Bar-Peled discusses his work supported by the Schumacher Fund. 

2018: Dr. James Cleary and Dr. Sri Raghavan

Dr. Raghavan and Dr. Cleary

In 2018, The Evan Schumacher Fund for Rare Cancer Research awarded its first grant in the amount of $50,000 to James Cleary, MD and Srivatsan Raghavan, MD, PhD, at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute (DFCI) in Boston, MA. This grant catalyzes efforts to build a cholangiocarcinoma research program at DFCI by Dr. Cleary, a leader in early phase cholangiocarcinoma clinical trials, and Dr. Raghavan, a physician-scientist interested in developing novel therapeutic approaches to cholangiocarcinoma.

“Your family and friends are the catalyst that has inspired all of this cholangiocarcinoma research at DFCI. We greatly hope that this momentum that we now have in cholangiocarcinoma will translate into better treatment options and outcomes for patients with this terrible disease. Thanks again for everything you have done for our research efforts. It has made an incredible difference.”- Dr. James Cleary

This innovative, entrepreneurial research strategy creates a new research pipeline at DFCI. It ensures that patient tissue will be used in the lab to create critical research tools such as cell lines and organoids, with the ultimate goal of identifying and testing potential new treatments.

UPDATE: We are delighted to report that in 2020, the work of Drs. Cleary and Raghavan contributed to the first FDA-approved targeted therapy for cholangiocarcinoma. This drug, Pemazyre (pemigatinib), was developed by Incyte, a close partner of TargetCancer Foundation. Congratulations, Drs. Cleary and Raghavan!

About the Fund

Evan was in his prime when diagnosed.
A serial entrepreneur who founded four Internet companies, Evan had the extraordinary talent to spot new trends. Alongside his well-recognized business savvy, he was known for his incredible people skills, energy, optimism, and his ability to engage everyone whose life he touched. All those who knew Evan, from employees and investors to friends and family, were magnetized by his unusual combination of incredible ambition matched with unending kindness. Evan believed that anything could be accomplished with hard work, drive, and faith in oneself and others.

As he approached his 45th birthday on April 8, 2014, Evan was in his prime. He was chief commercial officer for Echo Global Logistics, the public company in Chicago that bought his company, Open Mile, and he was busy commuting from Boston. Married nearly four years, he had a lovely home with his wife, alongside their two-year old son and twin newborn girls.

Evan, who had never spent a day in his life in the hospital, was diagnosed with Stage 4 cholangiocarcinoma with lung metastases two weeks after his daughters were born.

Evan searched for the newest treatments.
Evan approached cancer in the same way that he led his life, with resilience and amazing strength. He was determined to beat his cancer despite the lack of available treatments.

As he started chemotherapy, Evan searched intensely for the latest treatments. Using his strong networking skills, he searched worldwide until identifying a clinical trial that used novel immunotherapy drugs. Although it took more than a year to find and enter the trial, the immunotherapy treatment significantly reduced the tumors in his lungs, surprising his doctors. Though his health continued to deteriorate, eventually forcing him to exit the trial, Evan felt vindicated in pursuing the new immunotherapy treatments.

He died 19 months after his diagnosis.

Evan’s family, friends, and colleagues honor his life by supporting research into innovative treatments through the Evan Schumacher Fund for Rare Cancer Research. This Fund aims to take the same energy, drive, and optimism that Evan brought to his life towards finding effective treatments for rare cancers.

Read more about Evan Schumacher in his January 1, 2016 obituary from the Boston Globe.

Make a secure credit card donation

TargetCancer Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit foundation, Tax ID 26-4510094. 

Donate by check

Checks can be mailed to the following address:
TargetCancer Foundation
955 Massachusetts Ave., #343
Cambridge, MA 02139

Please make all checks payable to TargetCancer Foundation, and note “Schumacher Fund” in the memo line. 

TargetCancer Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit foundation, Tax ID 26-4510094. 

Learn more about other ways to donate

TargetCancer Foundation can accommodate a variety of different options for donations, including (but not limited to):

  • Donations made via wire transfer
  • Donations of securities

Please contact Jim Palma via email or by phone at 617-475-1673 for more information on these, or any other options.

TargetCancer Foundation is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit foundation, Tax ID 26-4510094. 

The Schumacher Fund Advisory Council

Andy Brown, Co-Chair
Partner, Francisco Partners

Florence Schumacher, Co-Chair
Retired healthcare marketing executive

Daniel Delaney
Portfolio Manager/Principal, Geneva Advisors LLC

Steven Y. Gold
Founder, 160 Companies

Jamie Hershon
Director, 3D Growth

Tim McGee
SVP, Business Development, Pipeline Success Inc.

Adam Patti
Chief Executive Officer, IndexIQ

Jason Pellegrini
CEO, Quantum, Inc.

Rohan Sajdeh
Senior Partner & Managing Director, The Boston Consulting Group

Michael Steinberg
Founder, Reciprocal Investments, LLC

The Evan Schumacher Fund for Rare Cancer Research is managed and advised by TargetCancer Foundation, a Cambridge, MA not-for-profit foundation dedicated to supporting innovative rare cancer research and patients.

We’re partnering with leading researchers to make a real impact
Learn More