By the Numbers

The Neurosurgery Research & Education Foundation (NREF) is dedicated to funding groundbreaking neurosurgical research, providing extraordinary educational opportunities for neurosurgeons and supporting studies that identify links between best practices and improved outcomes in patient care.

Since its inception, the NREF has invested more than $30 million in the future of neurosurgery. None of this is possible without your support. Through voluntary public donations, corporate support and partnerships with institutions and affiliated organizations, the NREF has funded:



Directed Residency Scholarships icon

Directed Residency Scholarships


Cerebrovascular Section Traveling Fellowships icon

Cerebrovascular Section Traveling Fellowships


Resident/Fellow Education Courses icon

Resident/Fellow Education Courses


Clinical Fellowship Grants icon

Clinical Fellowship Grants


Research Fellowship Grants and Young Clinician Investigator Awards icon

Research Fellowship Grants and Young Clinician Investigator Awards


Medical Student Summer Research Fellowships icon

Medical Student Summer Research Fellowships


The NREF's strategic use of donations and investment in early career neurosurgeons makes a big impact. An impact analysis found that:

  • 20% of NREF grant recipients have become chairs of academic departments.
  • More than 30% of NREF grant recipients have gone on to receive NIH funding, resulting in more than $353 million from National Institutes of Health (NIH).
  • 84% of NREF awardees went on to receive a total of 572 awards worth $690,949,156 throughout their careers (including non-NIH funding).
  • For every NREF dollar invested, $160 of total funding is received.


Show your commitment to the next generation of neurosurgeons. Please donate today.



My NREF Fellowship was critical to the acquisition of skills in molecular biology research essential to subsequent successful competition for NIH Clinical Investigator Development and P-01 grants, opening a path to an academic career with further research, clinical, teaching and leadership opportunities.

Griffith R. Harsh IV, MD, MA, MBA, FAANS
Julian R. Youmans Endowed Chair
Professor and Chairman, Department of Neurological Surgery
University of California, Davis
1986 NREF Research Fellow

The NREF award was an important early step in my journey towards becoming an independent NIH-funded neurosurgeon-scientist. I cannot emphasize enough the importance of this type of career development award in the careers of junior faculty. Not only does it provide important resources to support their burgeoning research programs, but it also provides key external validation to their work.

Gregory J. Zipfel, MD, FAANS
Chair, Department of Neurosurgery
Ralph G. Dacey Distinguished Professor of Neurosurgery
Neurosurgeon-in-Chief, Barnes-Jewish Hospital
2007 NREF Young Clinician Investigator


NREF is the Philanthropic Arm of the AANS

Contact Us

5550 Meadowbrook Industrial Ct.
Rolling Meadows, IL 60008-3852