In the fall of 2018, pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca launched the YOUR Cancer program. The program connects the company’s long history of cancer science with the knowledge that the best cancer care requires more than therapeutics alone — it requires a community. YOUR Cancer aims to convene, engage and celebrate the full breadth and depth of the oncology community and all who make a difference in the lives of cancer patients and their families.

To offer support, Scientific American Custom Media partnered with AstraZeneca to create the C2 Awards, which celebrate the people and organizations changing the lives of those affected by cancer. Now in their second year, the awards saw experts from advocacy organizations, all aspects of healthcare, government, research and beyond nominate more than 135 individuals and organizations who are catalyzing change across four award categories: Catalyst for Change, Catalyst for Care, Catalyst for Precision Medicine and the President’s Award. A panel of judges, all of whom are leaders in the cancer care community, reviewed and scored nominees for all awards except the President’s Award winner, which was selected by AstraZeneca.

For a first glimpse at the 2020 finalists for the Catalyst for Change, Care and Precision Medicine Awards, watch the videos below. Also, stay tuned to learn more about the winners in all categories, who will be announced at an awards celebration on October 21, 2020.

Serving the Underserved: Catalyst for Change

Finalists for the Catalyst for Change Award bring the highest quality of care to groups of patients that are often overlooked. Lynette Bonar established the first cancer center on native lands, serving the Navajo Nation. The Greensboro Health Disparities Collaborative conducts research to reduce cancer-care disparities in racial and ethnic minorities. Stephenie K. Kennedy-Rea of the West Virginia University Cancer Institute reduces cancer in Appalachian communities through evidence-based early detection, outreach and educational interventions.

Supporting Patients and Families: Catalyst for Care

These finalists make it easier to navigate the complex and at times taxing world of cancer care. Jill Kincaid founded Chemo Buddies to place volunteers in the treatment room, where they help and support patients while they receive chemotherapy. The Cancer Support Community Greater Philadelphia uses social workers and other mental-health professionals to provide patients with psychological and emotional support to reduce the stress, anxiety and depression that can accompany cancer. The Ulman Foundation created Ulman House, which provides free temporary housing for young adults being treated for cancer in Baltimore.

Making Care More Personal: Catalyst for Precision Medicine

Precision medicine means ensuring patients get the right treatment at the right time for their type of cancer, based on understanding their cancer’s genetic and molecular features. This is what finalists in this category are striving to deliver. Lincoln D. Nadauld founded the Intermountain Precision Genomics Program to improve cancer treatment through genomics and precision medicine without increasing costs. The Indiana University Health Precision Genomics Program brings cutting-edge genomic technology, advanced informatics and advanced clinical trials in precision medicine to cancer patients across Indiana — at no cost to the patient. Finally, Razelle Kurzrock of the Center for Personalized Cancer Therapy and Rare Tumor Clinic at the University of California, San Diego uses advanced molecular technologies to match individual patients to the targeted cancer treatment that is most likely to work for their individual tumors.

For more about the Cancer Community Awards, visit