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New Cancer Center


Cancer Research Capacity Boosted By Long-time Benefactors

Ribbon cutting ceremony in May. Pictured, from left, Assemblyman Denny Farrell Jr.; Herb Pardes, president and CEO, NYPH; Columbia University President Lee Bollinger; and National Cancer Institute Director Andrew von Eschenbach, M.D. Mrs. and Mr. Irving are also joined by Gerald Fischbach, M.D., executive vice president and dean; and Riccardo Dalla-Favera, M.D., new director of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center.
Ribbon cutting ceremony in May. Pictured, from left, Assemblyman Denny Farrell Jr.; Herb Pardes, president and CEO, NYPH; Columbia University President Lee Bollinger; and National Cancer Institute Director Andrew von Eschenbach, M.D. Mrs. and Mr. Irving are also joined by Gerald Fischbach, M.D., executive vice president and dean; and Riccardo Dalla-Favera, M.D., new director of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center.

"This is undoubtedly one of the happiest days of my life," Herbert Irving said during the dedication ceremony in May of the Irving Cancer Research Center. "In 1998 we conceived of having a research building dedicated to cancer and today we are a Comprehensive Cancer Center bursting at the seams, ready to do fantastic things in the future."

Herbert and Florence Irving, two of the country's most generous supporters of cancer research – and Columbia University Medical Center's leading benefactors for more than two decades – are the force behind the new 120,000-square-foot, nine-story building dedicated entirely to cancer research.

The building doubles the research capacity of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center, which encompasses all cancer-related research, treatment, prevention and education efforts at CUMC and New York-Presbyterian. The Irving Cancer Research Center is devoted entirely to investigators conducting disease-specific research of many cancers, including brain, breast, gastric, pancreatic, prostate, lymphoma and tumor immunology.

The Irving Cancer Research Center

The Irving Cancer Research Center
The Irvings have donated nearly $100 million to CUMC over the past 20 years. Their generosity has endowed the Herbert Irving Professorship and four other professorships, expanded the Irving Oncology Outpatient Unit, and created the Irving Oncology Inpatient Unit. Many promising young cancer investigators at CUMC have also started their careers with funds from the Irving Scholars Program, which began in 1987 and is open to all researchers.

The building – the only cancer research facility constructed in New York City in the last 15 years – will hold seven floors of laboratories, a "mouse house," and the Avon Foundation Breast Imaging Center for medically underserved women.

"Herb and Florence Irving are great friends of Columbia University and a lasting part of our medical center's legacy, but it's as a cancer fighter that Herb wants to be known," said Gerald Fischbach, M.D., executive vice president and dean at the ceremony. "Herb, that reputation as a cancer fighter is assured. It's assured here at Columbia, and with the construction of this wonderful research center, it will be assured across the country."

—Susan Conova

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