AACR Applauds Presidential Appointment of W. Kimryn Rathmell, MD, PhD, as Director of the National Cancer Institute
AACR expresses appreciation to Monica Bertagnolli, MD, for her stewardship of NCI before becoming NIH director in early November
PHILADELPHIA — The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) congratulates W. Kimryn Rathmell, MD, PhD, on her appointment by President Biden to serve as the 17th director of the National Cancer Institute (NCI).
“Dr. Rathmell brings impressive qualifications to this extremely important position, including her background as a top-tier physician-scientist and her experience as leader of the Department of Medicine at the Vanderbilt University Medical Center and Physician-in-Chief at the Vanderbilt University Adult Hospital and Clinics,” said AACR President Philip D. Greenberg, MD, FAACR, Rona Jaffe Foundation Endowed Chair and professor and head of the Program in Immunology, Clinical Research Division, Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle. “Her enthusiasm for innovative scientific methods and ideas, as well as her appreciation for the value and importance of basic research to advancing translational discoveries, should allow NCI to continue leading the way in programs aimed at preventing disease, improving health, and reducing suffering from cancer, while also helping to maintain America’s edge in the life sciences.”
Rathmell will succeed Monica Bertagnolli, MD, who served as NCI director from late 2022 until her recent confirmation as NIH director. During her tenure as NCI director, Bertagnolli provided critical leadership to advance President Biden’s Cancer Moonshot initiative, including releasing a comprehensive National Cancer Plan that outlines eight goals to prevent cancer, reduce deaths from cancer, and improve the quality of life for cancer survivors. The Plan seeks to engage stakeholders from across the public and private sectors to help achieve the Cancer Moonshot vision of halving cancer mortality rates over the next 25 years and ultimately ending all cancers as we know them.
“The entire cancer research and patient care community thanks Dr. Bertagnolli for her extraordinary dedication and commitment to reducing cancer incidence, morbidity, and mortality,” said AACR Chief Executive Officer Margaret Foti, PhD, MD (hc). “President Biden’s appointment of Dr. Rathmell as NCI’s next director ensures a continuity in leadership and management at NCI that is especially needed during this historic era of unprecedented scientific opportunities. We are thrilled about Dr. Rathmell’s appointment, and the AACR looks forward to working with Dr. Rathmell in the months and years to come toward our shared vision of a world without cancer.”