Press Releases

Yosemite and American Cancer Society Launch $13.2 Million Research Grant Program
Mar 13, 2024
The Yosemite-American Cancer Society Award supports innovative research to develop methodologies, establish feasibility, or pilot high risk/high reward projects to advance the prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of cancer.

ATLANTA and SAN FRANCISCO, March 13 – Yosemite, an oncology-focused venture capital firm, and the American Cancer Society (ACS) today announced the launch of the Yosemite-American Cancer Society Award (Yosemite-ACS Award) with an initial commitment of $13.2 million. The grant program will support innovative research to develop methodologies, establish feasibility, or pilot high risk/high reward projects to advance the prevention, diagnosis, or treatment of cancer.

Yosemite and ACS developed the highly competitive Yosemite-ACS Award to make an immediate impact in supporting innovative research taking place at prominent institutions across the country. Yosemite’s science-first approach incorporates no-strings-attached grantmaking alongside traditional financing, making this partnership with ACS a natural step for the fund launched in August 2023. This grant program will also help further ACS’s vision of ending cancer as we know it, for everyone.

“Philanthropic grantmaking is part of our soul as a venture fund. This collaboration amplifies our ability to accelerate science at the precipice of breakthroughs,” said Anna Darbyshire, chief operating officer of Yosemite. “In joining forces with the largest private funder of cancer research in the nation, we are further able to support our academic network’s most promising research. ACS’s established track record of enacting change in the oncology ecosystem makes them a perfect partner for Yosemite’s grant-making activities.”

The Yosemite-ACS Award aims to support a range of dedicated investigators from early career to nationally recognized scientists focused on the most promising science to advance key areas of cancer research. The two-year Yosemite-ACS Award offers up to $330,000 for one or two-year projects related to (1) the application of transformative AI models to make novel discoveries impacting cancer patients, and (2) research in immuno-oncology and cell therapy approaches.

“Funding innovative research is a critical tool in our efforts to improve the lives of cancer patients and their families. In joining forces, ACS and Yosemite will work to advance the most promising research through the Yosemite-ACS Award,” said Dr. Karen E. Knudsen, CEO for the American Cancer Society. “The American Cancer Society is honored to partner with Yosemite and to provide this bold platform to advance cancer discoveries that will save lives.”

The Yosemite-ACS Award will include a rigorous peer review process evaluating approach, innovation, and impact. Selection of the grantees will be made jointly by Yosemite and ACS following recommendation and review with the Yosemite-ACS Award Scientific Advisory Board (SAB).


About American Cancer Society

The American Cancer Society is a leading cancer-fighting organization with a vision to end cancer as we know it, for everyone. For more than 100 years, we have been improving the lives of people with cancer and their families as the only organization combating cancer through advocacy, research, and patient support. We are committed to ensuring everyone has an opportunity to prevent, detect, treat, and survive cancer. To learn more, visit or call our 24/7 helpline at 1-800-227-2345. Connect with us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

About Yosemite

Yosemite partners with leading researchers and innovative entrepreneurs working to make cancer non-lethal within our lifetime. The firm deploys capital from early non-profit grantees through late-stage companies to fund advancements across the oncology ecosystem. We leverage our differentiated scientific network to create and finance companies that drive the translation of new therapies in patients and optimize the patient experience. Yosemite aims to meaningfully accelerate the technology, treatments, and standard of care that have the power to improve the health and lives of cancer patients. For more information, please visit: