The American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) has elected Everett Vokes, MD, Chair of the Department of Medicine, to serve as its president for the 2021-22 term. Dr. Vokes, the John E. Ultmann Professor and Physician-in-Chief at UChicago Medicine and Biological Sciences, will take office as president-elect during the ASCO annual meeting in Chicago in June 2020 and serve a one-year term as president beginning in June 2021.
An internationally renowned expert in the treatment of head and neck and lung cancer, Dr. Vokes has maintained an active clinical practice for more than 30 years. He has a long history of leading clinical and translational research in the areas of head and neck cancer, lung cancer, and early-phase clinical trials and has received funding throughout most of his career, including being the principal investigator of our phase II NCI-sponsored contract from 1994 to 2009. His scientific focus has been on early phase translational and clinical trials, the interaction of chemotherapy and radiation, and curative-intent combined modality therapies. His work has shown that intense treatment combining radiation and chemotherapy can bring locally advanced head and neck cancer under control and improve survival.
Dr. Vokes has held a number of leadership positions at the University of Chicago, the three most significant being Chair, Department of Medicine (2009-present); Interim Dean of the Biological Sciences Division and Pritzker School of Medicine and Chief Executive Officer of the University of Chicago Medical Center (2009-10); and Chief, Section of Hematology/Oncology (1998-2009).
He has served on several editorial boards, including those of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Journal of the American Medical Association, The Lancet Oncology, Clinical Lung Cancer, Investigational New Drugs, and Annals of Oncology. His work also has been influential in national settings within the Alliance (formerly Cancer and Leukemia Group B), where he chaired the Respiratory Committee from 2004-17
Within ASCO, he is past chair of the Annual Meeting Education Committee and Annual Meeting Scientific Program Committee, as well as a member of the Conquer Cancer Development and Fundraising Committee and the Cancer.Net Editorial Board. He also served as an elected member of the Nominating Committee and on the Board of Directors from 2009-12. In 2008, he was one of two recipients of ASCO’s Translational Research Professorship, which has been instrumental in supporting the training of young investigators.
ASCO is the world’s leading professional cancer organization representing physicians of all oncology subspecialties. ASCO’s nearly 45,000 members from the U.S. and abroad set the standard for patient care and lead the efforts to discover more effective cancer treatments, increase funding for clinical and translational research and, ultimately, improve care for the millions of people diagnosed with cancer worldwide each year. ASCO publishes the Journal of Clinical Oncology, the preeminent, peer-reviewed medical journal on clinical cancer research, and produces Cancer.net, a comprehensive consumer website providing oncologist-vetted cancer information to help patients and families make informed health care decisions.