Who We Are | CRFJB

About Us

Our History

The Children’s Research Fund Junior Board was founded in 1992 as the Medical Research Junior Board Foundation, a junior board to the Medical Research Institute Council. In 2011, the Medical Research Institute Council changed its name to the Children’s Research Fund.

The Children’s Research Fund is a principal benefactor of the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute, the research arm of the hospital and one of a handful of free-standing facilities in the nation devoted exclusively to pediatric medical research.

In order to more closely align with our senior board, we changed our name from the Medical Research Junior Board Foundation to the Children’s Research Fund Junior Board. The Children’s Research Fund Junior Board works under the umbrella of the Lurie Children’s Foundation to promote activities and community awareness for Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

Since 1992, we have contributed nearly $2 million, including supporting initiatives for the Stanley Manne Children’s Research Institute and the Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago.

Past Co-Chairs

2018: Dan Martino & Lauren Frushnour
2019-2020: Brian Duffy and Katie Lyons
2021-2022: John Dana and Nick Rockwell
2023-2024: Jessica Prieskorn and Kaitlin Horsch


Children’s Research Fund Junior Board Funding History

2018: $172,038
2019: $134,757
2020: $53,934.23
2021: $74,720.25
2022: $72,893.39

2012 & 2013: Dr. Sookyong Koh’s Epilepsy Research
2014 & 2015: Dr. Kathryn Barsness’s Simulation-based Education
2016 & 2017: Dr. Ji Heon Paul Lee, Hematology, Oncology and Stem Cell Transplant Fellow
2018 & 2019: Dr. Jill Chang, Perinatal Brain Injury Research
2019 – 2022: Dr. Carolyn Foster, Telecare Solution for Home Breathing Machines
2022 – 2024: Dr. Jennifer Hoffman, Mental Health Research in the Emergency Room


About the Research

CRFJB Research Scholar: Dr. Jami Josefson

3-year, $150,000 to fund Dr. Jami Josefson

Dr. Jami Josefson is a physician-scientist and pediatric endocrinologist with two primary research interests. She is the Medical Director of the Lurie Children’s Thyroid Program and has a long-standing interest in optimizing treatment for children and adolescents with thyroid cancer. The most common types of thyroid cancer in youth, papillary and follicular thyroid carcinoma, have an excellent prognosis. Thus, it is important to individualize treatment plans and avoid overtreatment. Funds from this award will enable molecular sequencing on tumor tissue to identify those individuals at risk for a more severe course and allow for the individualization of treatment plans. This type of tumor testing will place the Lurie Children’s Thyroid Program at the forefront of precision medicine for childhood thyroid cancers.

Dr. Josefson also conducts clinical research in the developmental origins of childhood metabolic diseases with a long-term goal of prevention of childhood obesity and its associated conditions. She is one of the Principal Investigators of the NIH-funded GROWTH Study (Glycemia Range and Offspring Weight and adiposity in response To Human milk) which seeks to characterize human milk composition. There is a lack of knowledge on how the composition of human milk is impacted by maternal factors, and, in turn, how human milk composition affects growth during infancy and early childhood. This study is collecting human milk and studying infant growth on a large mother-child cohort, and analyzing the fatty acids in the milk and blood of mothers and babies. Funds from the CRFJB will support further research into the infant’s microbiome and methylome (epigenetics) in response to human milk composition. Results from this study will identify the health-promoting components of human milk and have an impact in the field of maternal-child health and metabolism research.