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Innovation & Startups

$1.6 million boosts local scientific research, thanks to Charles Kaufman

Carnegie Mellon University and University of Pittsburgh are among five institutions to share almost $1.6 million in grants supporting some of the most promising scientific research across the state.
The grants are the first round of funding from the Charles E. Kaufman Foundation, a part of The Pittsburgh Foundation, an endowment of $40 million that is designated to advancing scientific research in Pennsylvania.
“Any one of these grants has the potential to expand the frontiers of knowledge,” said Grant Olifant, president and CEO of the foundation. “This makes it that much easier for scientists to do groundbreaking research in Pennsylvania.”
Born in Clarion, Pa., in 1913, Kaufman was a longtime resident of the South Hills. He attended Carnegie Tech, now CMU, and was a chemical engineer for the Hagan Corp., which later became the Calgon Corp. Always ahead of his time, he was an active entrepreneur and an early member of the Western Pennsylvania Conservancy.
A total of eight grants were awarded to researchers at five universities: CMU, University of Pittsburgh, Penn State University and Drexel and Temple universities in Philadelphia.
More than 170 applicants applied for the first round of funding; researchers were selected using a model similar to Robert A. Welch Foundation, a Houston-based organization that supports scientific research in Texas.  
It was Mr. Kaufman’s intention to stimulate research in the state much the same way the Welch Foundation has for the state of Texas, said Graham Hatfull, chair the of Kaufaman Foundation’s scientific advisory board.

The on-going research seeks to encourage breakthroughs in chemistry, biology and physics, including cancer, autism, radiation, pharmaceuticals and bioengineering. Read a complete list of the research grants.
Writer: Deb Smit
Source: Grant Olifant, The Pittsburgh Foundation
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