In Memoriam, Dr. Arthur Gelb, 1937-2023

Two photos, one of Art and Linda Gelb posing together in a warmly lit living room, the other of Art Gelb at a lectern holding up a small glass trophy.

Left photo: Philanthropic support from Art and Linda Gelb was instrumental in launching and sustaining the work of the Bridge Project. Right photo: Gelb gave opening remarks at a Koch Institute event featuring Bridge Project research in 2017, where he held aloft the “Big Idea” award the program won at the inaugural Xconomy Awards.

With sadness, the KI marks the passing of long-time supporter Art Gelb, ScD ’61 (XVI), whose advocacy and philanthropy played key roles in the launch of the Bridge Project. As a member of the MIT Corporation, a trustee of Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and with multiple connections to cancer, Gelb had unique insight into the inner workings of both institutions. A successful engineer and polymath himself, he saw the significant translational impact that collaborations between MIT and the Dana-Farber/Harvard Cancer Center might yield and effectively enlisted organizational leadership at both institutions.

“In Boston, we are blessed with differently focused, world-class cancer researchers on both sides of the Charles River. The Bridge Project’s operating presumption is that spanning the gap between them — to enable truly joint research at the intersection of their disciplines — is destined to produce new, highly original, and powerful approaches to defeating cancer.”

Art Gelb

The Bridge Project launched shortly after the opening of the Koch Institute and has continued to grow, enabling work by dozens of teams who are developing notable advances in cancer detection, monitoring, and treatment, from completely new machine learning tools to novel devices that guide therapies, to better ways of using existing cancer medicines. We gratefully acknowledge Gelb’s vision, commitment, and generosity, and are honored to be part of his living legacy via the Bridge Project.

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