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The one hundred honoree: Martha Kaley

Donor Story

The one hundred honoree: Martha Kaley

Mass General Giving

A healthy, athletic young woman, Martha Kaley was shocked to learn she had breast cancer. A scratch from Sherlock, her family’s chocolate lab, called her attention to a breast lump. The surgeon removing it found a cancerous tumor on her chest wall that would have eluded a self-exam or mammogram.

Since then, with persistence and ingenuity, Martha has developed the nation’s first research funding organization devoted solely to discovering a biological test to detect breast cancer early — before the formation of a tumor.

To date, her nonprofit, Friends For An Earlier Breast Cancer Test®, has made seed grants totaling nearly $3 million to researchers at institutions including the Mayo Clinic, Duke University, Stanford University and the Roswell Park Cancer Institute.

The recipient of numerous awards for her visionary advocacy and leadership, Martha has so far targeted her home state of North Carolina with her fundraising prowess. Now that her mission is gaining wider visibility, Martha is extending her pioneering campaign nationwide.