Our Mission

Our mission is to abolish Kidney Cancer as a threat to the life and health of patients by accelerating research and offering direct financial support for clinical and laboratory researchers with promising ideas.

About Us

The Kidney Cancer Coalition is a grassroots movement formed to accelerate kidney cancer research through direct financial support of cutting-edge researchers to better understand, treat and ultimately cure kidney cancer. We are all volunteers, each of us driven by a personal story or just simply a giving heart.

Our Co-founders and Directors cover ALL administrative costs so 100% of every donation goes directly to fund kidney cancer research.

We are a registered 501(c)(3) charity (number 81-335246), please inquire for a copy of our IRS confirmation letter.

Our Co-Founders

Ralph Knapp
Ralph KnappCo-founder
Ralph is the owner of Action Paving & Construction in Virginia Beach, VA. He started his Company 31 years ago at the age of 24 and the Company has grown to over 45 employees. He is an avid golfer and loves the outdoors. In 2014, at the age of 53 he was diagnosed with renal cell carcinoma – kidney cancer. He continues to battle this disease and is committed to not only raising awareness but much needed research dollars for an underfunded cancer.

In 2015, Ralph and his wife Brenda raised over $300,000 to fund a clinical trial for 25 advanced kidney cancer patients expected to begin early 2017 at Johns Hopkins and University of Texas, Southwestern.

Ralph resides in Virginia Beach and Florida with his wife Brenda.

Brenda Knapp
Brenda KnappCo-founder
Brenda is a certified public accountant with over 25 years in public accounting where she has been an advisor to a wide variety of non-profit organizations. Her range of services to non-profits over the years have included preparing 990’s, preparing audited and reviewed financial statements and consulting.

In addition to her professional experience with non-profits, she has served on numerous charitable organization boards over the past 17 years. Her responsibilities have included all executive board positions, chairing fundraising events, and serving on numerous committees.

Brenda graduated with a BS degree in Accounting from Christopher Newport University in 1988.

Our Directors

Susan RoherDirector
Susan Roher is a Certified Public Accountant with a Master’s degree in Administration. Ms. Roher has extensive non-profit experience as a board officer. Her employment background includes 10 years in banking and 10 years as a Certified Financial Planner. Susan currently resides in Virginia Beach, VA.
Jolene Jarrell
Jolene JarrellDirector
Jolene Jarrell has more than 20 years of experience in the healthcare industry with expertise in the health information management field. Ms. Jarrell has a BS Degree in Healthcare Management. She is active in the North Carolina Health Information Management Association (NCHIMA) and past President 2014-2015. She has served as a volunteer for over 10 years and held multiple board positions. Currently, Jolene resides in Raleigh, NC with her husband Chris Meadows.
Merlinda CheletteDirector
Merlinda Chelette has a BS in Nursing and is a kidney cancer survivor. Ms. Chelette sits on the Patient Council Board at the University of Texas Southwestern and also volunteers weekly at the Simmons Cancer Center. Merlinda currently resides in Texas with her husband Ricky.




Get Connected

The Kidney Cancer Coalition is a movement of those impacted by Kidney Cancer working together to abolish Kidney Cancer as a threat to the life and health of patients by accelerating research and offering direct financial support for clinical and laboratory researchers with promising ideas.

“Coming together is a beginning;
keeping together is progress; working together is success”

Henry Ford

“Kidney cancer is the ideal sandbox for these new approaches, and without a doubt the same approach can, should and will be suitable for other cancers”