Margaret Foti to be honored for significant contributions to cancer care

06/03/04

AACR chief executive officer to receive special recognition award at American Society of Clinical Oncology Annual Meeting

Margaret Foti, Ph.D., M.D. (h.c.), chief executive officer of the American Association for Cancer Research, is the recipient of the American Society of Clinical Oncology's 2004 Special Recognition Award, given annually to acknowledge individuals who have had a major impact in areas of clinical oncology, cancer research, clinical trials, reimbursement and patient advocacy activities, as well as outstanding, long-term service to ASCO and to clinical oncology.

The award will be presented June 5 at the Inaugural Session of the society's 40th Annual Meeting at the Ernest N. Morial Convention Center in New Orleans.

The ASCO Special Recognition Award winner is chosen by a selection committee, chaired this year by Immediate Past President Paul A. Bunn, Jr., M.D., who is a professor and director of the University of Colorado Cancer Center in Denver, and also a long-time member of the AACR.

In choosing Foti for the honor, the committee cited, "her instrumental role in the development of the AACR/ ASCO Joint Workshop, 'Methods in Clinical Cancer Research,' which has served as the prototype for subsequent workshops designed to introduce beginning oncologists in Europe and Australia to the essentials of effective clinical trials design." They noted also Foti's efforts "to provide vital links between translational scientists and clinicians," and her fostering of "important connections between these two research groups."

"I am deeply honored to receive this award, which is all the more meaningful coming from ASCO," Foti said. "ASCO is one of our most valued and long-term collaborators in strengthening cancer education and communication. Our close relationship has become increasingly important in this modern era of translational cancer research and synergistic targeted therapies," she added.

A native of Philadelphia, Foti has dedicated virtually her entire professional career to the AACR, first as an editorial assistant for the association's flagship journal, Cancer Research which she continues to serve as managing editor. She became executive director in 1982 and chief executive officer in 2000. She is a graduate of Temple University and its School of Communications and Theater, where she earned her master's and doctoral degrees.

In 2003, Foti received the Doctor of Medicine and Surgery Honoris Causa from the University of Rome; she lectured there and at the University of Palermo on the topic of "The Vital Role of Research in the Conquest of Cancer: Progress and Promise in the New Era of Science."

Also, last year, she was honored by the William S. Graham Foundation for Melanoma Research, known popularly as "The Billy Foundation," with its annual CommunityCaring Award. She is the recipient as well of the Cino del Duca Oncology Award for "outstanding work in raising public consciousness in the support of cancer research, treatment, and prevention," the Ville de Paris Award for her contributions to the field of cancer, and several awards from the AACR for advancing progress against cancer.

Previous recipients of the ASCO Special Recognition Award include Nancy Brinker, founder of the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation; Ellen Sigal, president of the Friends of Cancer Research; Don Shula, whose foundation is dedicated to breast cancer research; retired Army Gen. Norman Schwartzkopf; and renowned cancer physicians Kathleen Foley, John Durant and Harold Freeman.

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