American Association for Cancer Research Inaugurates New Leadership at AACR Virtual Annual Business Meeting of Members 2020
Dr. Antoni Ribas Inaugurated as President
PHILADELPHIA — The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) welcomes Antoni Ribas, MD, PhD, FAACR, as President of the organization for 2020–2021. He was inaugurated during the AACR Annual Business Meeting, held virtually on April 29.
Ribas is professor of medicine at the David Geffen School of Medicine at the University of California Los Angeles (UCLA); director of the UCLA Jonsson Comprehensive Cancer Center Tumor Immunology Program; and director of the Parker Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy Center at UCLA. He is an internationally recognized physician-scientist whose translational and clinical research focuses on developing new therapeutic options for patients with malignant melanoma.
“As I enter my term as AACR President in these unprecedented times, I look forward to helping the organization successfully move forward in response to challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Ribas. “I am also honored to be following in the footsteps of the past AACR Presidents, and I appreciate the opportunity to work with Dr. Foti, the AACR officers, and with the AACR’s membership and staff. In the next 12 months, we will continue to shape the future of cancer research and help bring more lifesaving breakthroughs to patients with cancer around the world.”
Ribas, an AACR member since 1999, is currently serving as chair for the AACR Annual Meeting 2020 Program Committee, and as a scientific editor of the AACR journal Cancer Discovery. He has also served as a member of the AACR Board of Directors (2016–2019), cochair of the Combination Therapies Think Tank (2019); vice chair (2018–2019) and cochair (2015–2016) of the Annual Meeting Program Committee; cochair of the AACR-NCI-EORTC Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics Conference (2017, 2018); cochair of the Tumor Immunology and Immunotherapy Conference (2016); cochair of the Annual Meeting Education Committee (2015–2016); and member of the Cancer Immunology Working Group Steering Committee (2014–2016). He was the chair of the AACR-CRI Lloyd J. Old Award in Cancer Immunology Review Committee (2013–2014). Ribas also was a member of the Editorial Board of Clinical Cancer Research from 2012 to 2014 and has served on the AACR NextGen Grants for Transformative Cancer Research Scientific Review Committee and the Clinical and Translational Cancer Research Grants Scientific Review Committee.
Ribas was elected to the 2020 class of Fellows of the AACR Academy. He received the AACR-CRI Lloyd J. Old Award in Cancer Immunology in 2018 and the AACR Richard and Hinda Rosenthal Memorial Award in 2016. Other awards Ribas has received include the Lila and Murray Gruber Memorial Cancer Research Award and Lectureship from the American Academy of Dermatology in 2015; the Giants of Cancer Care Award from OncLife in 2015; R35 Outstanding Researcher Award from NCI in 2015; Outstanding Researcher Award from the Society for Melanoma Research in 2013; Mary Kay Ash Foundation Award in 2007; and the Junior Researcher Award from the Melanoma Research Foundation in 2005.
Ribas earned his doctorate from the Autonomous University of Barcelona, Spain, and his medical degree from the University of Barcelona. After serving as an intern and resident at the University Hospital Vall d’Hebron in Barcelona, he moved to UCLA, joining the faculty in 2001.
Additional Leadership Changes
David A. Tuveson, MD, PhD, FAACR, director of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory Cancer Center in Cold Spring Harbor, New York, was inducted as the AACR President-Elect. Elaine R. Mardis, PhD, FAACR, who holds the Nationwide Foundation Endowed Chair in Genomic Medicine and is co-executive director of the Institute for Genomic Medicine at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, now serves as Past President.
In addition, the following six distinguished cancer researchers have been elected and/or appointed to the AACR Board of Directors for the 2020–2023 term:
Silvia Chiara Formenti, MD, professor and Chair of Radiation Oncology, department of radiation oncology; Sandra and Edward Meyer Professor of Cancer Research and associate director, Meyer Cancer Center, Weill Cornell Medical College; radiation oncologist-in-chief and attending physician, New York Presbyterian Hospital.
Formenti has served as cochair, AACR Annual Meeting Program Committee (2019–2020); session chair, AACR Annual Meeting, “Novel Rational Checkpoint Inhibitors” (2019); chair, AACR Annual Meeting Educational Session, “Combinations” (2016); panelist, AACR Industry Roundtable Session, “Using Tumor Biology to Inform and Improve Combination Therapy Strategies” (2019); and scientific editor, Cancer Discovery (2020–present). Formenti has served on the following AACR committees: Finance and Audit Committee, Radiation Science Committee, Annual Meeting Clinical Trials Committee, Annual Meeting Education Committee, Women in Cancer Research (WICR), and the WICR Charlotte Friend Memorial Lectureship Committee.
Elaine Fuchs, PhD, FAACR, Rebecca C. Lancefield Professor, Laboratory of Mammalian Cell Biology & Development, The Rockefeller University, New York; and investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute.
Fuchs was inducted into the inaugural class of Fellows of the AACR Academy (2013); received the AACR-G.H.A. Clowes Memorial Award (2019), and Pezcoller Foundation-AACR International Award for Extraordinary Achievement in Cancer Research (2014). She served as chair, AACR Princess Takamatsu Memorial Lectureship Award Committee (2016–2017); and chair, AACR Laboratory Research Awards Committee (2008). Fuchs has served on the following AACR committees: AACR Academy Steering Committee, AACR Award for Lifetime Achievement in Cancer Research Committee, Council of Scientific Advisors, and the Pezcoller Foundation-AACR International Award for Cancer Research Committee.
Roy S. Herbst, MD, PhD, ensign professor of Medicine (medical oncology); professor of Pharmacology; chief of Medical Oncology; associate cancer center director for Translational Research; director, Thoracic Oncology Research Program; and interim director, Yale Center for Immuno-oncology, Yale Cancer Center, New Haven, Connecticut.
Herbst has served as chair (2016–2017), and vice chair (2012–2015), Science Policy and Government Affairs Committee; cochair, AACR-IASLC Joint Conference on Molecular Origins of Lung Cancer: Biology, Therapy, and Personalized Medicine (2012); chair, Tobacco Products and Cancer Subcommittee (2009–present); senior editor, Clinical Cancer Research (2009–2015); and cochair, AACR Annual Meeting Program Committee (2008–2009). Herbst has served on the following committees: June L. Biedler Prize for Cancer Journalism Committee, AACR Cancer Progress Report Steering Committee, Science Policy and Government Affairs Committee, ASCO/AACR Workshop on Methods in Clinical Cancer Research, Waun Ki Hong Award for Outstanding Achievement in Cancer Research Committee, Cancer Patient Tobacco Use Assessment Task Force, Clinical and Translational Cancer Research Award Committee, Clinical Research and Experimental Therapeutics Awards Committee, Phase I, II, and III Adult Clinical Trials Section of the Clinical Research Program Subcommittee, and the Special Conferences Committee.
Ira Mellman, PhD, vice president of Cancer Immunology, Genentech, South San Francisco, California; professor of Biochemistry and Biophysics, University of California San Francisco; senior fellow, Lincoln College, University of Oxford, United Kingdom.
Mellman served as cochair, Annual Meeting Program Committee (2019–2020, 2014–2015); and co-organizer, AACR Special Conference on Tumor Immunology and Immunotherapy (2018). He also was featured as a plenary speaker, Special Conference, “Evolutionary Dynamics in Carcinogenesis and Response to Therapy” (2020); speaker, AACR Annual Meeting Educational Session, “Co-stimulation and Co-inhibition in T Cell-Mediated Immunity: PD-L1/PD-1: Mechanism of Action and Rational Combinations” (2018); speaker, Annual Meeting Regulatory Science and Policy Symposium (2016); speaker, Annual Meeting “Meet the Experts” Session, Oncology Meets Immunology, “Not Just Another ‘Hallmark’: The Mechanistic Basis of Cancer Immunotherapy” (2015); and panelist, Minorities in Cancer Research Professional Advancement Roundtable (2011). Mellman has served on the following committees: Special Conferences Committee, AACR-Cancer Research Institute Lloyd J. Old Award in Cancer Immunology Committee, and the Cancer Immunology Working Group.
Suzanne L. Topalian, MD, Bloomberg-Kimmel Professor of Cancer Immunotherapy; professor of Surgery and Oncology, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine; director, Melanoma Program, Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins; associate director, Bloomberg ~
Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy at Johns Hopkins, Baltimore.
Topalian served as chair, Special Conference on Melanoma, Plenary Session, “Intersection of the Tumor and Immune Microenvironment” (2019); chair, Educational Session, “Principles of Immunotherapy: Stepping on the Accelerator” (2015); cochair, Special Conference, “Advances in Melanoma: From Biology to Therapy” (2014); cochair, Annual Meeting Program Committee (2013–2014); and cochair, Stand Up To Cancer-AACR Joint Scientific Advisory Committee, Melanoma Dream Team (2011). Topalian has served on the following committees: AACR Clinical and Translational Cancer Research Awards Committee, Science Policy and Government Affairs Subcommittee, Annual Meeting Education Committee, AACR-NCI-EORTC Molecular Targets and Cancer Therapeutics Program Committee, Annual Meeting Clinical Trials Committee, and the Task Force on Regulatory Science and Policy.
Also, Scott A. Armstrong, MD, PhD, was appointed to the AACR Board of Directors to fill President-Elect Tuveson’s position as Director. Armstrong will hold the position for the final year of Tuveson’s three-year term. Armstrong is chair of the department of pediatric oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute and David G. Nathan Professor of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School in Boston.
Armstrong has served as chair (2015–2016), and cochair (2013–2014, 2009), AACR Annual Meeting Program Committee; session cochair for the AACR Annual Meeting (2018); cochair, Special Conference, “New Horizons in Cancer Research: Delivering Cures Through Cancer Science,” Shanghai (2016); chair, Hematologic Malignancies Meeting (2014); and scientific editor, Cancer Discovery (2014–present). Armstrong has served on the following committees: Special Conferences Committee, AACR-Joseph H. Burchenal Memorial Award for Outstanding Achievement in Clinical Cancer Research Committee, AACR Clinical and Translational Cancer Research Award Committee, AACR Cancer Progress Report Steering Committee, Pediatric Cancer Working Group Steering Committee, and the AACR-Aflac Inc. Career Development Award for Pediatric Cancer Research Committee.