When we join together, we can achieve what others have only dreamed of. An immunologist working with a data scientist, a patient with a clinical trialist, a donor with a cancer biologist — these partnerships make innovation possible across scientific divisions, across the world, across boundaries that stop others in their tracks.
Read on to learn how your partnership in 2021 fueled important new scientific strides — and take a look at what we see coming next.
We acknowledge that Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center sits on the traditional land of the first people of Seattle, the Duwamish People past and present, and honor with gratitude the land itself and the Duwamish Tribe.
It was a remarkable year. Yes, 2021 was hard. But together, as a community, we worked to bring Fred Hutch, Seattle, the state of Washington and the world through the pandemic while never taking our eyes off the goal of ending suffering from cancer.
The pandemic has required us to dig deep and find ways to work and connect with each other. We learned to do our research in a way that keeps each other safe and shows our commitment to community. The exceptional people who work at Fred Hutch and your support made it possible for us to continue to enroll patients in clinical trials, make advances and share our findings with the world.
We all can feel pride in what we accomplished. Our scientific discoveries continued to be extraordinary across the board — in cancer, virology, prevention and basic sciences. The Steam Plant has come into its own; I’m always energized when I see our computational biologists working next to our immunotherapy researchers.
We were joined by 13 new faculty, each of whom brings new energy and focus to our mission. Half are from groups that are historically underrepresented in cancer research. We also saw outstanding contributions from our trainees and graduate students. In fact, one of the most important findings of the year came from then-graduate student Dr. Allie Greaney and postdoctoral fellow Dr. Tyler Starr from the Bloom Lab and grad student Meghan Garrett from the Overbaugh Lab, who showed how mutations in SARS-CoV-2 allow the virus to avoid detection by antibodies.
That is just one example of how we contributed to the pandemic effort. Trials done at our COVID-19 Clinical Research Center, which demonstrated the value of antivirals and antibody treatments, are another.
I can’t overstate how critical your support was. Federal grants fund about 70% of the science we do. That means 30% is supported by people motivated to see an end to suffering from cancer, the elimination of viral diseases and equity in health outcomes. You made a profound difference to our scientists and our mission.
I believe we’re now entering a phase of renewal. We are renewing our commitment to our mission and finding new and better ways to link our science to our patients.
Over the past year, we held important conversations about how we could rework the relationship between Fred Hutch, Seattle Cancer Care Alliance and UW Medicine. The proposed Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center would create a unified adult cancer care and research center that is clinically integrated with UW Medicine. It represents a remarkable opportunity to bring research and patient care closer together.
I’m grateful for the many ways we have found to connect virtually. Still, one of things I enjoy most is bringing people to our campus, showing them our labs and introducing them to scientists who have come to the Hutch from around the world because they know this is where cures happen. I look forward to showing our community of supporters how profoundly your support is changing lives.
Despite the continued challenges wrought by COVID-19, we remained committed to answering the most pressing questions about cancers, infectious diseases and other illnesses.
From COVID-19 to cancer, Hutch scientists pursued new ideas in 2021 to save lives. And, thanks to science-informed safety measures, our research could proceed while keeping our employees and community safe. Over the year, Fred Hutch scientists identified potential new drug strategies to target cancers’ weaknesses. They remained at the forefront of COVID-19 research at the lab bench and in clinical trials. And our decades of expertise in HIV research even contributed to the approval, at the close of December, of the world’s first long-acting, injectable drug that can prevent infection with the AIDS virus.
Using deep neural networks for drug discovery. Triggering RNA damage to improve cancer immunotherapy. Regenerating immunity. Getting COVID-19 vaccines in arms — and gaining insights to speed development of future vaccines and treatments. Check out these, and more, Fred Hutch scientific highlights from 2021.
With the support of our donors, we continue to invest in leading-edge scientific technologies, facilities, services and expertise to spur discoveries and bench-to-bedside translation across every scientific division.
Our work moved forward thanks to the many individuals, foundations and corporations who united to support our mission.
Hutch scientists drove progress toward cures in 2021 thanks to the power of the many. Longtime supporters stayed true while new ones found us by tuning into our virtual events or reading about our COVID-19 research in the media and Twitter feeds. More than 2,700 people attended a special Science Says on #GivingTuesday to hear comedian and host of “The Daily Show” Trevor Noah interview Hutch scientists. Businesses joined the cause, hosting Hutch researchers at Lunch & Learns during which we shared the latest information about cancer and COVID-19 with employees and community members and gained new supporters.
Donors like you helped us launch crucial initiatives and gave us the flexibility to pursue bold ideas. You accelerated our efforts to prevent and treat — or cure — dozens of forms of cancer as well as diseases like COVID-19. You also supported recruitment and labs for a new cadre of scientists who will help us prevent future pandemics and find the cures we seek for cancer.
Around the country, people rallied their friends and families through peer-to-peer fundraising. They offered challenge matches and donated memorabilia to motivate others to make gifts. These are just a few examples of what we can achieve when we come together to fuel fearless science.
Hutch scientists are making rapid progress in developing treatments for kids with acute myeloid leukemia thanks to more than $1 million contributed to Project Stella. Supporters across the U.S. are inspired by 2-year-old Ella Siders (left), who is living with the disease, and Stella Novotny (right), who died at the age of 4.
Companies like Haselwood Auto Group in Bremerton, Washington, and Smith Brothers Farms supported us through cause marketing. Others engaged their employees. Qualtrics’ 5 For The Fight Employee Giving campaign supported the Hutchinson Institute for Cancer Outcomes Research, which focuses on reducing the economic and human burden of cancer.
One hundred and eighty foundations supported our cutting-edge research. With a $1 million award from the W.M. Keck Foundation, Drs. Susan Bullman and Chris Johnston will test whether bacterial systems may be able to change how our genes are turned on or off and whether these changes could promote cancer.
Supporters like John DeVore (pictured above) gifted sports memorabilia, cryptocurrency and 55 cars. We received more than $15.5 million in support from donor-advised funds, IRA charitable rollovers and stock. In addition, 22 people became new members of the Thomas Legacy Society.
DocuSign expanded its teams by an astounding 700% and raised over $445,000 — more than any other corporate team in Obliteride history.
Amazon/Amazon Web Services (AWS) was Obliteride’s first global sponsor, with teams in 40 countries. The German team, pictured here social distancing, was Obliteride’s largest with 566 participants.
"Being diagnosed with cancer, especially during a pandemic, can be isolating, but participating in Obliteride allowed my family and friends to join me and, in a way, fight it with me,” said Lianne Cruz Horvath.
Using creativity and passion to support Fred Hutch research in good times and hard ones, too.
We continue to strengthen our organizational foundation as we look ahead to our future discoveries.
Fred Hutch is a place where scientists can set their creativity free. And that requires not only well-equipped labs and scientific resources, but visionary leadership, sound finances, and a firm commitment to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion. We enter 2022 on solid footing to make the next great scientific leaps.
Contracts and Government Grants
Gifts and Philanthropic Grants
Gifts from Individuals
Fundraising and Community Events
Program Services and Research
Management and General
In 2021, several of our researchers received notable honors for their contributions to science, and new leaders stepped up to help us bring our vision to life.
Dr. Robert Bradley
Scientific Director, Translational Data Science Integrated Research Center, Fred Hutch
Dr. Christopher Li
Associate Director of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion, Fred Hutch/University of Washington Cancer Consortium
Dr. Trevor Bedford
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator
Dr. Frederick “Erick” Matsen
Howard Hughes Medical Institute Investigator
Dr. Yingye Zheng
Fellow, American Statistical Association
To build the future we all envision — in which cancers and other deadly diseases are prevented or cured in all people — we remain committed to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion principles and goals. We continue to lay and build on our foundation of critical change to actualize our mission.
In 2021, we led science and educational initiatives that advance health equity, and we pursued new opportunities to foster participation of community partners in our science. We implemented recruitment practices that advance diversity in roles across the Hutch, including researchers and other professionals, and we continue to develop and strengthen inclusive recruitment strategies. Meanwhile, we created new educational experiences for our employees to engage practices that promote equity, inclusion and anti-racism centerwide. And we expanded strategic partnerships with organizations across our region and our world that can help us advance all of this mission-critical work.
Read more about our progress and commitments in our Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Annual Report.
Fred Hutch, UW researchers work to reduce risk and inequities and improve access to care, resources for Indigenous communities and patients
DEC. 6, 2021
New study from COVID-19 Prevention Network demonstrates impacts of engaging Black, Indigenous, people of color communities
OCT. 19, 2021
We share our hopes for an increase in cancer screening, improved vaccines, greater trust in science and more over the coming year.
The pace of technological advancement is only accelerating with each new year. But what will remain unchanged in 2022 and beyond is our commitment to chase the big ideas that will save lives.
Here’s what a few of our scientists hope we will see this year, from breakthrough scientific technologies to early detection and new cures.
Check out the full article for more of our hopes and predictions for 2022.
Content direction by David Patton. Design direction by Corey Hage. Designed by Sarah Jo White. Written by Susan Keown and Lesley Reed.
Photography and videography by Robert Hood/Fred Hutch News Service.
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