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Jessica Morris (1963–2021), founder of nonprofit Our Brain Bank

by Linnea Crowther

Jessica Morris was the founder of Our Brain Bank, a nonprofit organization that provides support for those with glioblastoma.

A network for cancer fighters

Morris was diagnosed with glioblastoma in 2016. She quickly became frustrated at the lack of psychological support for patients diagnosed with the aggressive cancer. Knowing her diagnosis was terminal – the odds of living more than 18 months past a glioblastoma diagnosis are very low – Morris sought out support and, when she didn’t find what she needed, she created it. She founded Our Brain Bank, which offers a network for glioblastoma sufferers that includes that psychological support but also goes beyond it. Morris brought doctors into her network to encourage them to seek patient-centered treatments. And through Our Brain Bank, she smoothed the way for glioblastoma patients to receive second opinions and to enroll in clinical trials. Morris beat the odds and survived more than five years after her diagnosis, which only about five percent of glioblastoma patients do.

Morris on founding Our Brain Bank

“[B]y finding a way to channel the terror of the diagnosis productively, I feel more alive today than ever.” —from a 2017 op-ed for the New York Times

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Tributes to Jessica Morris

Full obituary: The New York Times

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