Demonstrated significant potential to effect meaningful change in breast cancer. These individuals should be exceptionally talented scientists who have shown that they are the “best and brightest” in their field(s) through extraordinary creativity, vision, leadership, innovation, and productivity. They should have demonstrated experience in forming effective partnerships and collaborations and should exhibit strong potential for future leadership in the breast cancer research community. Since the intent of the Era of Hope Scholar Award is to recognize creative and innovative individuals rather than projects, the central feature of the award are the applicant’s demonstrated ability to go beyond conventional thinking in their field and the innovative contribution that the Principal Investigator (PI) can make toward ending breast cancer. The PI should articulate a vision that challenges current dogma and demonstrates an ability to look beyond tradition and convention. Experience in breast cancer research is not required; however, the application must focus on breast cancer, and the PI must maintain a 50% dedication of his/her full-time professional effort during the award period to breast cancer research. This professional effort in breast cancer research can be through a combination of this award and other current support. Individuals from other disciplines who will apply novel concepts to breast cancer are encouraged to submit. The PI is expected to assemble a research team that will provide the necessary expertise and collaborative efforts toward accomplishing the research goals. The PI’s research team must include two or more breast cancer consumer advocates. As lay representatives, the consumer advocates must be individuals who have been diagnosed with breast cancer and are actively involved in a breast cancer advocacy organization. Their role should be independent of their employment, and they cannot be employees of any of the organizations participating in the application. The consumer advocates should have a high level of knowledge of current breast cancer issues and the necessary background or training in breast cancer research to contribute to the project. Their role should be focused on providing objective input on the research and its potential impact for individuals with, or at risk for, breast cancer.
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