HERA Case Statement

Established in 2002 by Sean Patrick (who passed away in 2009 from ovarian cancer), the HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation is a nonprofit dedicated to eliminating ovarian cancer by promoting Health, Empowerment, Research, and Awareness.

As a nationally recognized ovarian cancer 501c3 organization, HERA provides funding for cutting-edge research grants to scientists at respected medical institutions. In so doing, HERA attracts researchers to expand the scientific understanding of ovarian cancer while improving the lives of those battling the disease. In addition, HERA awards grants to local community groups to raise awareness about the disease in novel and unusual ways.


The mission of the HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation is to eliminate ovarian cancer by promoting Health, Empowerment, Research, and Awareness.


HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation, through its strong network of volunteers, donors and partners, funds and inspires scientific researchers who focus on solving the ovarian cancer problem.  HERA seeks collaborative partnerships that broadly expand research, awareness, and education.   At the heart of HERA is the underlying premise that women need to have the knowledge and the confidence to fully understand and advocate for the direction of their health care.  HERA accomplishes all of the above by offering community events that center on increasing self-esteem and confidence for all participants while raising funds for critical research grants.

The Facts

One in 75 women will be diagnosed with ovarian cancer in her lifetime. It affects mothers, daughters, sisters and friends. With early detection about 92% will survive longer than 5 years after diagnosis. Currently, only 20% of ovarian cancer is caught early. Estimates for ovarian cancer in the United States for 2017: about 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer will be diagnosed and about 14,000 deaths will occur.  It ranks fifth as the cause of cancer deaths in women, and accounts for more deaths than any other cancer of the female reproductive system.  (Source: American Cancer Society)

HERA combines innovative programs with unique events in order to raise awareness and funds for ovarian cancer research.


Science Grants

In partnership with Johns Hopkins University, these grants are awarded to scientists with “outside the box” ideas regarding the research of new directions in the basic research, treatment, early detection, and prevention of ovarian cancer. 

Stand Up To Cancer Collaborative Grant

This grant is dedicated to piloting leading-edge, ovarian cancer research that will help patients and save lives. Led by the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund, Ovarian Cancer National Alliance, National Ovarian Cancer Coalition, HERA Women’s Cancer Foundation, and other ovarian cancer organizations around the country, the Stand Up To Cancer Collaborative grant provides funding, over a three-year period, for research associated with this insidious disease.

Community Grants

These $1,000 grants are awarded to nonprofit organizations for programs that improve the quality-of-life for women with ovarian cancer or raise awareness about the disease in novel and unusual ways.

Major Fundraising Events


HERA’s Climb4Life events are a cornerstone in helping accomplish our mission to eliminate ovarian cancer by promoting Health, Empowerment, Research, and Awareness.  HERA’s Climb4Life series provides an excellent forum for empowering women and supporting awareness of the signs and symptoms of ovarian cancer through rock climbing.  Events are held annually in Boston, Boulder, DC, Salt Lake City, Santa Ana and new this year Chicago.           

Run Like A Girl

Run Like a Girl events promote a healthy lifestyle while fighting ovarian cancer. These women-only four mile fun run-walks help raise awareness and critical funds for research grants.  Events are held annually in Virginia.

Community Events

Good-hearted folks often will hold fundraisers or take place in a race while raising funds for HERA.  


For more information please contact:
Nickie Kelly, Executive Director

Download a PDF of the Case Statement