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In Memoriam: Kenneth R. Hess

(01/04/1960 - 07/26/2019)Member since 2001

Kenneth R. Hess, PhD, an AACR member and a statistician whose work helped support numerous cancer clinical trials, died July 26, 2019, at the age of 59.

Hess was born Jan. 4, 1960, in Corpus Christi, Texas. He received his bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering from Rice University in 1982, and a master’s degree in 1986 and a PhD in biometry in 1992 from the UTHealth School of Public Health at Houston.

Hess joined The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center as a faculty member in the department of Patient Studies in 1991, then joined the Biostatistics department in 1994. In later years, he became a faculty member at the MD Anderson UTHealth Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, where he was affiliated with the Program in Quantitative Sciences.

Hess served as a statistician for numerous studies at MD Anderson. He also served on many committees, notably as the chair of MD Anderson’s Data Safety Monitoring Board, where he led the review of clinical trial protocols to ensure patient safety and data integrity.

Hess became a member of the AACR in 2001. From 2011 to 2017, he served as an editorial board member for Clinical Cancer Research.

Also, Hess served as a member of the American Joint Committee on Cancer (AJCC), a member of the Melanoma Expert Panel, a member of the AJCC Precision Medicine Core, and chair of the AJCC Evidence-based Medicine and Statistics Core. Hess was elected as Fellow of the American Statistical Association in 2017.