Of all the case studies of Aurora’s past 25+ years of projects, our work with The James remains the most profound. Starting in 1986, Aurora’s Joan Gaudion McKinney began working with the team that would help Dr. James launch his dream of a dedicated cancer facility at The Ohio State University. Creating exhibits that went with Dr. James to conferences and events to recruit the first doctors, nurses and researchers, started a life-changing legacy of helping to create a cancer-free world through awareness and philanthropy with the James marketing team.
Little did she know that eventually McKinney would become one of The James’ many cancer survivors, but Aurora Exhibits would be part of the first Cancer Survivors’ Day and every one since, the visit of Queen Sylvia of Sweden to The James, the opening of the Stefanie Spielman Comprehensive Breast Cancer Center and the launch of the NEW cancer hospital in 2014.
Aurora’s partnership with The James has resulted in lifelong friendships and too many memories to put in one paragraph! Joan is more than happy to sit down over a cup of coffee or a glass of wine to share the stories that have helped save lives at The James, while at the same time, enriching the lives of everyone at Aurora.
The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James), has as its vision, to create a cancer-free world, one person, one discovery at a time. This underlies everything they do in working to eradicate cancer through research that translates to innovative and highly targeted patient care. The OSUCCC – James is the only cancer program in the United States that features a National Cancer Institute (NCI)–designated comprehensive cancer center aligned with a nationally ranked academic medical center and a freestanding cancer hospital on the campus of one of the nation’s largest public universities.
The OSUCCC – James is one of only 51 NCI-designated comprehensive cancer centers in the nation, a designation that they have maintained through competitive renewal since 1976. After the site review for our most recent renewal, we earned the NCI’s highest ranking, “exceptional,” and received a five-year, $23 million NCI support grant. The NCI survey team stated that the OSUCCC – James “should serve as the model for other matrix university-based centers.” At Ohio State, more than 300 cancer researchers and their teams from 11 of the 15 colleges work collaboratively, across multiple disciplines, to improve the effectiveness of cancer prevention, diagnosis and treatment.