October 20, 2021

Haller Foundation, Walther Foundation donate $1.5 million to Purdue for endowed professorship in cancer biology

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. — A $750,000 donation from the Henry E. Haller Jr. Foundation has endowed a professorship that will support the work of the Purdue Center for Cancer Research and the College of Science in cancer biology. The gift was matched by the Walther Cancer Foundation for a total of $1.5 million. The endowment will be known as the Boyce Haller Professorship.

For Haller Foundation board member Kevin Boyce (Liberal Arts ’93) and his mother, Linda Boyce Haller, the foundation’s co-founder and president, an endowed professorship supporting cancer research at Purdue was the perfect way to create a “lasting impact for a wonderful cause.”

“When I think about all of the Purdue students who will learn from the men and women who hold this professorship,” Boyce said, “the fruitfulness is what makes it all worth it.”

The Boyce Haller Professorship will support an endowed tenured faculty position within Purdue’s College of Science and will be open to candidates whose scientific work advances an area of strategic interest — theoretical, computational or experimental — for both the Purdue Center for Cancer Research and the college.

“Research today requires the development of new computational approaches and analyses that will reveal new and important cancer-causing pathways,” said Dr. Timothy Ratliff, Distinguished Professor of Comparative Pathobiology and the Robert Wallace Miller Director of the Purdue Center for Cancer Research.

“The Boyce Haller Professorship provides the resources we need to recruit a strong, scientific leader whose work will lead to a better understanding of cancer and, with time, new treatments.”

The Haller Foundation is dedicated to funding scientific and technological research through universities and medical facilities. The foundation recently gave $400,000 to fund an endowment to support primarily low-income, underrepresented, high-merit, high-need graduates of Purdue Polytechnic High School who want to attend Purdue University.

“When we saw how the university handled that donation, we knew we wanted to find another way to work with Purdue again,” Boyce said. “The Haller Foundation really prioritizes developing relationships — especially with institutions we know will be around for a long time.”

In 2020, the Walther Cancer Foundation invested $4.25 million worth of matching funds to be used by the Purdue Center for Cancer Research to support computational genomics and bioinformatics core.

“We are grateful that both the Haller Foundation and the Walther Foundation recognize and support our efforts to make leading discoveries in the biology of cancer,” said Patrick J. Wolfe, Purdue’s Miller Family Professor of Statistics and Computer Science and the Frederick L. Hovde Dean of Science. “This endowed professorship is an important part of our ongoing strategic partnership with the Purdue Center for Cancer Research and will aid us significantly in recruiting and retaining preeminent scientists to our team.”

Matching funds through the Walther Cancer Foundation are still available. For more information, contact Jerry Alberts, chief development officer for the Purdue Center for Cancer Research, at 765-494-6230.

About Purdue University

Purdue University is a top public research institution developing practical solutions to today’s toughest challenges. Ranked in each of the last four years as one of the 10 Most Innovative universities in the United States by U.S. News & World Report, Purdue delivers world-changing research and out-of-this-world discovery. Committed to hands-on and online, real-world learning, Purdue offers a transformative education to all. Committed to affordability and accessibility, Purdue has frozen tuition and most fees at 2012-13 levels, enabling more students than ever to graduate debt-free. See how Purdue never stops in the persistent pursuit of the next giant leap at https://purdue.edu/.

Media contact: Jim Bush, 765-336-1909, jsbush@purdue.edu

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