Goodes Family & The ADDF Create New Prize for Alzheimer’s Drug Development Researchers

August 12, 2015

Category: Initiatives

Thanks to the generosity of former Warner-Lambert CEO and Chairman Melvin R. Goodes and his family, the Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery Foundation (ADDF) has established the only prize specifically recognizing scientists in Alzheimer’s drug discovery research. Mr. Goodes—who has been open about his own Alzheimer’s diagnosis—is an honorary member of the ADDF’s Board of Governors. He and his wife, Nancy, who is also on the ADDF’s Board of Governors, are outspoken advocates for Alzheimer’s research.

“Mel Goodes’ legacy is about taking bold chances,” said Nancy Goodes. “During his career, he championed the development of Lipitor, which would become the best-selling drug in history, as well as Cognex, the first drug approved for Alzheimer’s patients. He also helped bring Alzheimer’s out of the shadows by speaking publicly about his diagnosis and fighting against the stigma of the disease. This award honors his professional accomplishments and personal courage while celebrating researchers who are developing bold ideas to conquer Alzheimer’s disease.”

The Melvin R. Goodes Prize for Excellence in Alzheimer’s Drug Discovery, which is open to researchers in both academia and industry, includes a $150,000 grant to support the winner’s future research. The Goodes Family Foundation has made a commitment of $750,000 to fund the prizes for 10 years, and the ADDF has matched the family’s contribution with an additional $750,000. The prize recipient will be announced in September.

“We are grateful to the Goodes family for spearheading the creation of this prize, which supports the valiant efforts of scientists dedicated to conquering Alzheimer’s,” said Howard Fillit, MD, Founding Executive Director and Chief Scientific Officer of the ADDF. “These researchers are making critical contributions toward effective treatments and a cure for this devastating disease, and their work often goes unrecognized. The Goodes Prize will honor them and help accelerate their innovative work.”

Each year, the Goodes Prizes will be awarded to a professionally active researcher who has pursued novel research and made a significant and lasting impact in the field of Alzheimer’s drug discovery. The prize is judged by a Selection Committee that includes leaders in Alzheimer’s drug discovery research. The committee nominates a select group for consideration. Top nominees are asked to submit an application that includes a description of promising research in need of funding.  This application is used as the basis for final judging.

About Melvin R. Goodes

Melvin R. Goodes joined Warner-Lambert Canada as manager of new product development in 1965 and quickly rose through the ranks to become CEO and Chairman Worldwide in 1991. Under his leadership, Warner-Lambert became a major player in the prescription drug industry, bringing Lipitor to market in 1996. Lipitor, a highly effective statin, was the world’s best-selling drug, with more than $135 billion in sales. Early in his tenure as CEO, he spearheaded the development of Cognex, the first drug approved by the FDA for Alzheimer’s disease. Mr. Goodes earned his bachelors of commerce degree and was granted an honorary doctorate of laws from Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario. He earned a master’s of business administration from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business in 1960, where he was a Ford Foundation and Sears Roebuck fellow. In 2010, Mr. Goodes made headlines with a landmark speech revealing his early-stage Alzheimer’s disease and pledging to apply all his efforts to speed up the search for new therapies. Since this speech, he and his wife Nancy have become strong ambassadors for the ADDF, inspiring hope among Alzheimer’s patients, caregivers, physicians and researchers.