Episode 58: Melissa Proffitt Schmidt and Anne Laine of ResearcHERS

We have a lot more to do, but by highlighting the talent of women researchers we really hope to change the needle.”

In a 2019 study done by Northwestern University, it was found that male researchers receive an average of $41,000 more in funding than their female counterparts. Though this discovery is alarming, it only further confirmed the significant gender disparity that was known to exist within the research field. To address this problem, the American Cancer Society announced ResearcHERS: Women Fighting Cancer, a new initiative that engages women of influence to raise funds that directly support women-led cancer research. With the help of this program, the American Cancer Society has become the top supporter of women in cancer research, with half of the society’s grantees being women – but there’s still a long way to go.

Vicki and Kathy talk with Melissa Proffitt Schmidt, a co-chair for ResearcHERS of Indiana, and Anne Laine, a manager working within the Cancer Control department of the American Cancer Society, about the ResearcHERS initiative and the prevalence of gender bias in the research, science and technology industries. Melissa and Anne share why they got involved with the American Cancer Society and the amazing things the Indiana chapter has accomplished in the last year. Listen in to learn how you can help even the playing field and benefit the amazing work of female researchers.