Grants Opportunities

A. Ward Ford Laser Research Grants


The A. Ward Ford Memorial Research Grant Committee in accepting grant proposals for direct clinical or basic science research investigating current use or potential new applications of laser or other light based therapy.  The American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery (ASLMS) supports the initiatives of the A. Ward Ford Memorial Research Grant Committee.


Applicants must be enrolled in or have completed an MD residency or PhD post-doctoral training at the time of application, and must be a member or applicant for membership in ASLMS at the time of the award.  Information on membership can be found on the ASLMS website. Priority will be given to applicants who are interested in or entering an academic teaching or research position, but all applications will be considered. 


Research Grant Awards:           Grants up to $65,000 will be awarded for one year

Application Deadline:                June 1

Notification:                                  Successful applicants will be notified by the end of June

Project Completion:                   The project must be completed between July 1 of the application year and June 30 of the following year.  Applicants may receive an extension to complete the research if requested and approved by the grant review committee.


Application Process: Applications are accepted through the Community Foundation of North Central Wisconsin’s online application system. The Community Foundation serves as administrators of the endowed

A. Ward Ford Memorial Institute Fund. To register on the online grant system and to complete your application, visit their website at and follow the prompts to the “Grants and Scholarship” page, and click on the “Apply Online” button. Once you have registered, you will see a menu of Foundation grant opportunities; choose the A. Ward Ford Memorial Research Grant to begin filling out your form.


Grant Application Requirements:

                Applicant background including training, previous positions, publications, previous research

               Clear presentation of the clinical problem or question to be researched

                Presentation of the research design

                A detailed budget

               Evidence of the institutional or other support base for the research, including collaborators

               IRB approval letter for human subjects research, and approval from the institution supporting the research

               Those in training positions will need to have a letter of support from the training program director, and a designated mentor or research supervisor


Grant Payment: Grant payment will be made in two installments by the Community Foundation of North Central Wisconsin directly to the institution where the grant research will be conducted. A six-month report must be submitted by December 31 to initiate the second payment.


Grant Follow-up: Upon completion of the research project, the grant recipient or primary investigator is required to submit an abstract for presentation at the ASLMS annual meeting, and to submit a manuscript for publication in Lasers in Surgery and Medicine.  A. Ward Ford Memorial Institute Fund support for the research must be recognized in any publication or presentation.


Questions or requests for further information can be directed to:

Dr. William Owen, Chair

A. Ward Ford Memorial Research Grant Committee

Community Foundation of North Central Wisconsin

500 1st Street, Suite 2600 / Wausau, WI  54403

715-845-9555 /






William B. Mark was an engineer by training who, along with his wife, Caroline, formed the A. Ward Ford Foundation named in honor of Caroline’s grandfather, Austin Ward Ford, who was a pioneer in the early business machine industry. 


After attending an industrial laser conference, Bill Mark became interested in the possible medical use of lasers. With the foundation medical director, Dr. Ellet Drake, a number of other like-minded individuals, and a generous grant from Caroline and the A. Ward Ford Foundation, the American Society for Laser Medicine and Surgery (ASLMS) was founded with the first annual meeting in 1981.  The Society had a unique concept where all interested parties including physicians, nurses and other clinicians, researchers, industrial and government representatives could meet and share their research and teaching for the benefit of medical care. 


Bill Mark died in 1980, but under the guidance and leadership of Dr. Drake the Society grew and developed into the premier organization we know today.  


If Bill Mark was the brains, and Ellet Drake the heart of the Society, Caroline Mark was the soul.  She was a lady of significant means, which she used wisely and generously, but she was also a lady of intelligence and integrity.  She believed in the value of education and the benefit of research which she supported throughout her lifetime.  She gave encouragement and formed many lasting friendships in her continued support of the Society. 


Research, education, and the friendship of sharing was the nature of Caroline Mark and this is, and continues to be, the basis of the Society.  The A. Ward Ford Memorial Research Grant is the continued legacy of Bill and Caroline Mark, and their contribution to the laser medical field.     


The A. Ward Ford Memorial Institute Fund is a component fund administered within the Community Foundation of North Central Wisconsin.