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ICRF President’s Message | ICRF Chair’s Message | International Board of Trustees

ICRF President’s Message

David Abramson, ICRF President

Dear Friends:

Thank you for your interest in – and support of – the Israel Cancer Research Fund (ICRF). We are the largest non-profit in North America dedicated to funding Israeli cancer research.

I hope this finds you happy, healthy, and safe in these challenging times.

COVID-19 notwithstanding, Israel continues at the cutting edge of global cancer research. That’s why I am so proud to report that we will be funding new research at near-record levels over the next 12 months.

As you review this site, I hope you’ll take the time to check out our “Brilliant Minds” Webinar Series as well as the interview with Nobel Prize winner Aaron Ciechanover included in our 2020 Virtual Gala video. You will discover that Israel is a major source of innovation in the understanding and treatment of cancer and that many of Israel’s most promising cancer research investigations have been funded by ICRF.

To me, the case for support of ICRF is clear-cut and compelling. Israeli cancer research is world-class and – due to lower overhead costs and ICRF’s ability to directly fund its grantees – very cost-effective. Or as my financial services friends might put it, with ICRF you get both growth and value.

Know, too, that even as we push smartly and energetically forward towards the cures we all hope for, ICRF is funding important advances that are benefitting millions of families now. From Velcade® to Doxil® to Gleevec®, ICRF scientists have made essential contributions to the development of many groundbreaking drugs, giving millions of families, including mine, the greatest gift of all – more time together.

Unfortunately, every year, ICRF receives more promising research proposals than we have dollars to fund. Our goal: to make sure that no deserving cancer research project in Israel goes unfunded. Ever. With your help, we can make that happen.

A prominent Israeli cancer researcher was once asked, “When will there be a cure for cancer?” His response: “No money, never. Some money, one day. More money, sooner.”

Our progress against this relentless disease is made possible only thanks to the generosity of supporters like you. I hope at this time of gratitude, hope and charity, you will consider a donation to this worthy cause and well-respected organization.


David Abramson
President, ICRF International

ICRF Chair’s Message

Bryna Goldberg

Dear Friends:

ICRF was founded over 45 years ago by a group of American physicians and scientists to provide funding for cancer research in Israel. Our mission is to further advance our understanding of cancer and facilitate discoveries that might lead to effective treatments. While the initial focus of our founders was to prevent the “brain drain” of talented and brilliant Israeli researchers leaving the country due to lack of financial support, their ultimate dream is still our dream today – that a cure for cancer will be discovered in Israel – and benefit all humankind.

To date, ICRF has transferred more than $82 million, which has funded over 2,600 grants conducted by Israeli scientists at 22 different Israeli research labs. This accomplishment is a credit to the successful combination of generous donors, outstanding scientists, enthusiastic volunteers, and devoted staff – all are essential to the achievement of our mission.

Cancer scientists in Israel are invited to submit their grant proposals to ICRF which are then rigorously reviewed and graded by a scientific review board to ensure that the best and most promising grant proposals are identified. Each year, renowned scientists and highly esteemed oncologists gather in New York to review these scientific grant applications from Israeli scientists. And each year, there are more superb grant proposals worthy of funding than dollars available to support them.

And so our challenge is to raise as much money as possible through our chapters (6 in the U.S., 2 in Canada and 1 in Israel) to support the groundbreaking work of Israeli cancer scientists. By doing so we accomplish two worthy goals – first, contributing to top notch research aimed at discovering the keys to combating cancer and developing effective cures, and second, supporting Israel by helping to fund its best scientists.

Over the past decade, I had the privilege of participating in three scientific missions to Israel with ICRF supporters. At research labs across Israel we heard first hand from Israeli scientists about the advances they were making and the pressing need for more funds to support their research. These missions strengthened my personal connection to ICRF and inspired me to help elevate our brand and increase awareness of and support for the invaluable work done by cancer scientists in Israel.

I am proud and honored to serve as Chair of ICRF International. I hope to build on the achievements of my predecessors with the goal of funding as many outstanding Israeli scientists as possible in their quest to increase cancer understanding leading to effective treatments.

Thanks to those of you who have contributed to ICRF – you can be proud that you have become a valuable stakeholder in working towards a cure for cancer. For those who are new to ICRF, we look forward to engaging with you on our journey to support cancer research in Israel.


Bryna Goldberg
Chair, ICRF International

International Board of Trustees 2021


David Abramson


Bryna Goldberg


Rob Densen

First Vice-President

Joel Pelofsky

Vice Presidents

Arnold M. Baskies, MD
Charles Ben Dayan
Jeffrey Bernstein


Richard Edelheit


Cynthia Perl

Executive Committee Members

Richard Lipkin
Nancy Maizels, MD
Charles Serlin


Robert Bard
Bruce Barron
Alan Berk
Jeffrey Bly
Benjamin Bonavida, PhD
Louis Brause
Michelle Chrein
Steven B. Cohen
Marsha Deakter
Vera Finkelstein
Bonnie E. Fish
Paul T. Fox
S. Donald Friedman♦
Tamir Gilat
Kenneth E. Goodman
Gary I. Grad, MD
Robert Greene
Maryanne Greenfield
Lesley Heller
Samuel Herzfeld
Yashar Hirshaut, MD
Mark A. Israel, MD
Clive Kabatznik
Ian Kady
Beth Kaplan
Barbara Kasell
Susan Matteson King
Moni Lustig
Michelle Makori
David Malkin, MD
Rhonda Mims
Patrick Mundt
Linnea Olson
Lisa Oved
Tom Peled
Jane Rabhan
Sarah Rosen
Lisa Schoenberg
Sidney J. Winawer, MD♦

Presidents Emeritus

Rob Densen
Harriet Elisofon
Brad Goldhar
Yashar Hirshaut, MD
Harvey Kaylie*
Daniel G. Miller, MD*
Theodore T. Miller, MD

Chairpersons Emeritus

S. Donald Friedman♦
Kenneth E. Goodman
Yashar Hirshaut, MD
Michael Rosenfelt
Leah Susskind*
Eve Wald*

Honorary Board Members

Evelyn Bienenfeld
Benjamin Brafman
Lynda Brafman
Harriet Elisofon
Maralyn Friedman
Faith G. Miller
Steven T. Rosen, MD
Michael Rosenfelt
Judith Sherman
Michel Steinberger
Eve Wald

National Executive Director

Beryl Chernov

* Deceased
♦ Charter Board Member 

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