Washington state’s cancer research fund will be named the Andy Hill Cancer Research Endowment, after a measure sponsored by Sen. Joe Fain was signed into law on Jan. 30. Fain’s legislation recognizes Hill, his friend and colleague, who lost his own battle with cancer on Oct. 31, 2016. Hill’s wife Molly attended the bill signing ceremony held at the state Capitol.
“We may sometimes lose great leaders, but their contributions and character are never forgotten,” said Fain, who was elected to the Senate the same year as Hill, who resided in Redmond. “Andy’s journey to find an experimental treatment gave him a second chance, which he used to give back to the people of our state. His story of perseverance inspires many fighting their own battle with the disease. While I’m certain Andy would have found this recognition superfluous, it’s the type of people who feel that way who are often most worth recognizing.”
Hill was originally diagnosed with lung cancer despite having never smoked. While he faced significant odds he was found to be cancer free in 2009 after use of a cutting-edge experimental treatment. Hill was first elected to the Washington State Senate in 2010, quickly rising to the role of chief budget writer and negotiator and remained cancer-free until 2016.
“As a cancer survivor and a cancer advocate with the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network, I’m thrilled to see this important fund named after Senator Hill. Serving on this board with my fellow ACS CAN cancer advocate Jennifer Kampsula Wong is a great honor,” said Eunice Hostetter, ACS CAN Washington state lead ambassador. “There is so much exciting cancer research being done here in Washington state. It’s an honor to be able to fund some of these projects, one of which could be the next big cancer breakthrough.”
Hill worked to create the cancer research endowment authority in 2015, which provides and directs funding for cancer research projects.