Joanne Knight and her late husband, Charles F. Knight, have been longtime leaders in the support of Alzheimer’s disease research at Washington University. In addition to their support for the Knight Family DIAN-TU, the family’s extensive philanthropy at the medical school has extended to the Charles F. and Joanne Knight Alzheimer’s Disease Research Center, the Joanne Knight Breast Health Center and Breast Cancer Program at the Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center, the Charles F. and Joanne Knight Distinguished Professorship in Neurology, and the Charles F. and Joanne Knight Distinguished Professorship in Orthopaedic Surgery.
A longstanding board member and former chair of the St. Louis Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, Mrs. Knight became familiar with Alzheimer’s when her mother developed the disease in the 1980s. Mr. Knight, who had served as CEO of Emerson and as a university trustee, later developed Alzheimer’s. For decades, the Knight family has provided critical resources to propel Alzheimer’s disease research at Washington University.
We saw firsthand how this disease affects patients and families. We also saw that Washington University is at the forefront of Alzheimer’s disease research, and their work offers hope that one day there will be a truly effective treatment.