Katie Couric’s Stand Up to Cancer Telecast Brings Total Donations to Nearly $800 Million

The journalist and cofounder of the cancer research nonprofit, now in its 15th year, shared her own breast cancer diagnosis one year ago

Stand Up to Cancer Biennial with Katie Couric
Jimmy Smits and Stand Up to Cancer Council cofounder Katie Couric speak onstage at the Stand Up to Cancer Biennial Telecast at NeueHouse Hollywood (Credit: Jon Kopaloff/Getty Images)

Stand Up to Cancer, the nonprofit cofounded by Katie Couric in 2008, celebrated its 15th year and aired its eighth roadblock fundraising telecast on Saturday, bringing the organization’s total cumulative donations to over $795 million in support of critical cancer research.

Combined with funds from corporate, foundation and individual donors since the last biennial in 2021, donations from Saturday’s telecast totaled over $60.1 million.

“We are so appreciative of the generosity of the entertainment community, our Board of Directors, our corporate and foundation donors and the individuals who continue to show their support of Stand Up to Cancer and our critical mission,” Couric, who cofounded SU2C with the late Laura Ziskin and Noreen Fraser, said in a statement.

“In light of the many challenges we continue to see in fundraising as a result of the pandemic, we are beyond grateful for every single dollar raised to help make every cancer patient a long-term survivor,” Russell Chew, president and CEO, added. “We’ve seen first-hand the life-saving impact of these critical funds over the last 15 years; with the continued support from our community, we look forward to the breakthroughs we will accomplish together in the next 15 years.”

Couric, who publicized in September 2022 her own breast cancer diagnosis in June of that year, also nodded to the impact cancer has on millions of Americans each year.

“More than 1.9 million people in the U.S. are anticipated to be diagnosed with cancer in 2023,” she said. “This disease affects so many — including myself and my fellow SU2C cofounders — it is critical that we come together and take action so that we can continue to help more cancer survivors thrive.”

Celebrity participants for the 2023 telecast included Elizabeth Banks, Jessica Biel, Don Cheadle, Danai Gurira, Tony Hale, Ken Jeong, Queen Latifah, Maria Menounos, Julianne Moore, Tig Notaro, Eric Stonestreet, Justin Timberlake and Jimmy Smits, pictured onstage with Couric above.

President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden also shared a personal message with viewers in support of the event, congratulating Couric and the org on 15 years of essential cancer research and emphasizing their own commitment to finding a cure through the Biden Cancer Moonshot.

Additionally, the event aired a montage of archival comedic skits from telecasts of years’ past, highlighting support from celebrities like Jack Black, Ben Falcone, Zach Galifianakis, Brad Garrett, Bill Hader, Jon Hamm, Kevin Hart, Ed Helms, Jay Leno, Melissa McCarthy and Matthew McConaughey. Musical performances from Brittany Howard, Simone Ledward Boseman, Little Big Town and The Who were also featured.

The telecast aired simultaneously on more than 55 participating media platforms across the U.S. and Canada, including all four of the States’ major broadcast networks. Broadcasters carrying the show donated one hour of simultaneous commercial-free prime time.

The show is now available on VOD services including Disney+, Hulu, Max, Peacock and Showtime, and donations are still being accepted in the U.S. at standuptocancer.org.