Karin Decker Noss Scholarship

The application period for the 2015 Karin Decker Noss Scholarship is now open.  The deadline to apply is April 10, 2015.  Click here to apply.

Karin Decker Noss Scholarship Program Guidelines

Background:  Karin Decker Noss was a dedicated board member and past president of the Virginia Breast Cancer Foundation. A retired Air Force Lieutenant Colonel, Karin served in the military for over 20 years. When she was diagnosed with Stage IIB breast cancer in July 1995, her life changed forever. Karin quickly dedicated her life to breast cancer advocacy – working tirelessly in both the legislative and medical communities and dedicating herself to furthering knowledge of scientific issues associated with breast cancer. She wanted people to know the truth about breast cancer. Karin began serving on the Virginia Breast Cancer Foundation (VBCF) in 1997 and represented VBCF on the National Breast Cancer Coalition (NBCC) Board of Directors as well as numerous committees beginning in 1998. She was a graduate of both the Project LEAD and Project LEAD Clinical Trials programs. She served as president and committee chair on the Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization Board and served the Y-ME National Capital Area Affiliate in several roles, including president. Karin also served on several peer review panels for both the Department of Defense (DoD) and California Breast Cancer Research Programs and was a member of the DoD Breast Cancer Research Program Integration Panel.

Karin Decker Noss:  Karin lost her battle with breast cancer on February 16, 2008, but many will benefit from the work that she did and the trials in which she participated. In her memory, VBCF has established a scholarship program to assist individuals in attending conferences and trainings that strengthen knowledge and understanding of the science of breast cancer.

Purpose:  The Karin Decker Noss Scholarship is provided to fund training for the selected participant in medical research and legislative advocacy to carry on the work that Karin began. This scholarship program aims to encourage increased knowledge and education related to breast cancer resulting in stronger breast cancer advocacy and more involvement in VBCF’s breast cancer advocacy program.

Award:  A $5,000 reimbursable award will be available to the recipient for a 24 month period. The funds may be used for expenses, such as travel, lodging, meals, and registration fees for approved conferences and educational courses.

Eligibility:  Any breast cancer advocate who resides in Virginia and commits to apply the knowledge acquired and abide by the commitment guidelines may apply for the award.

Eligible Activities:  If the awardee has not completed Project LEAD they must apply for Project LEAD Workshop and/or Institute as one of their educational courses. Project LEAD Institute must be completed prior to attending San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, ASCO and other scientific conferences.

The following educational programs are automatically approved: Project LEAD Workshop, Institute, Quality Care, and Clinical Trials; NBCC Advocacy Conference, San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium, ASCO and NCI sponsored events related to breast cancer; AACR conferences. Other programs may be approved, but the recipient must notify the Sponsorship Committee for approval prior to attending.

Process:  Applications will be accepted from February 28th through March 31, 2015. Staff will review applications based on pre-determined criteria and make recommendations to the Awards Committee. The Awards Committee will make recommendation to the Board for a vote in April. The applicants will be notified by April 30. The award will begin on May 1 or as soon as an agreement is signed by the awardee and VBCF.

An interview may be requested by the Awards Committee.

Conference fees may be paid directly by VBCF to the sponsoring organization. Expense reimbursement reports must be submitted within 30 days of the conference. Expenses will be reimbursed within 30 days of expense report being submitted and approved. Recipients may request an advance to cover projected expenses. Other requirements will be spelled out in the agreement signed after the award is made.


The recipient of the Karin Decker Noss Scholarship must agree to:

  • Serve as an active member of the VBCF Advocacy Committee during the award period and for a period of 12 months thereafter.
  • Submit an educational article for each conference attended for the VBCF newsletter.
  • Attend the NBCC Advocacy Conference (four days including National Lobby Day).
  • Attend state and national lobby days with VBCF and serve as team leader.
  • Expand their advocacy involvement at the local, state or national level.
  • At the end of the award period, the recipient must provide a written document that describes how the funds were used, what was learned, and how the knowledge will be used to advance breast cancer advocacy and the mission of VBCF. Examples of the written document include an action plan or a journal article.


The Virginia Breast Cancer Foundation is a non-profit organization committed to the eradication of breast cancer through education and advocacy.

Virginia Breast Cancer Foundation
5004 Monument Avenue
Suite 102
Henrico, VA 23230

800-345-8223 | 804-285-1200

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