On June 29, USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center, Keck Medicine of USC and the Keck School of Medicine of USC announced a $5 million gift from the Rosalie and Harold Rae Brown Charitable Foundation. The gift was bestowed by Harold R. Brown, the founding couple’s son and the foundation’s current trustee.

The money will go toward creating and supporting the Rosalie and Harold Rae Brown Center for Cancer Drug Discovery within the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center. The new center will focus on accelerating the development of groundbreaking cancer treatments.

Caryn Lerman, PhD

“The importance of conducting research to develop more effective and less toxic cancer therapies cannot be overestimated,” said Caryn Lerman, PhD, director of the USC Norris Comprehensive Cancer Center and associate dean for cancer programs at the Keck School. “This gift will enable us to leverage the talent of USC Norris scientists and dedicated clinicians and ensure that our groundbreaking discoveries move not from bench to bookshelf, but from bench to bedside, transforming cancer care and survivorship for all people.”

Harold R. Brown, who will celebrate his 90th birthday in August, is a previous donor to USC Norris and graduated from USC with a Bachelor of Science degree in 1959.

“I have been fortunate to do well in business, and now through my efforts as trustee of the Rosalie and Harold Rae Brown Charitable Foundation, I want to give back to a cause that is not only personally important to me, but addresses a great need in society, finding a cure for cancer,” he said.

This gift will have an immediate impact by supporting the development of new clinical trials that build on existing knowledge of the underlying causes of cancer and its progression. Initial projects will focus on cancers that disproportionately affect members of underserved communities such as breast, prostate and colorectal cancers.

“This generous gift will help position USC Norris and the Keck School at the forefront of innovative cancer research and treatment,” said Laura Mosqueda, MD, dean of the Keck School. “It will significantly enhance our mission of finding cures and offering renewed hope for all who are impacted by cancer.”

— Alison Rainey