American Cancer Society

First African American Woman to Lead American Cancer Society National Board

Press Release   •   Nov 11, 2011 04:34 EST

The American Cancer Society, the nation’s largest voluntary health organization, elected 11 new officers to its volunteer 2011-2012 National Board of Directors during its annual meeting this week, including the first African American woman to chair its board. The organization’s National Assembly and National Board of Directors, the Society’s primary governing bodies, have been comprised of elected volunteers since the organization’s inception in 1913.

            Leading the Assembly will be the newly elected President W. Phil Evans, M.D., F.A.C.R., of Dallas, Texas, and presiding over the Board will be Chair Cynthia M. LeBlanc, EdD, M.A., of Richmond, California. Other officers elected were: Gary M. Reedy, of Dresher, Pennsylvania, chair-elect; Vincent T. DeVita, Jr., M.D., of New Haven, Connecticut, president-elect; Pamela K. Meyerhoffer, F.A.H.P., of Scottsdale, Arizona, vice chair; Tim E. Byers, M.D., M.P.H., of Aurora, Colorado, first vice president; Douglas K. Kelsey, M.D., Ph.D., F.A.A.P., of Zionsville, Indiana, second vice president; Daniel P. Heist, C.P.A., of State College, Pennsylvania, treasurer; Robert R. Kugler, Esq. of Haddonfield, New Jersey, secretary; Edward E. Partridge, M.D., of Birmingham, Alabama, immediate past president; and, Stephen L. Swanson of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, immediate past chair.  

“Though much progress has been made, with 350 more people every day being given a chance to celebrate their birthdays compared to just 20 years ago, there is much more work to do, and there are many more lives we can save,” said new Society president W. Phil Evans, M.D., F.A.C.R. “As a cancer survivor myself, I know that each day can make a difference, and I look forward to working with my fellow volunteers and Society staff to move us even closer toward a world with less cancer and more birthdays.”

Dr. Evans is a board certified diagnostic radiologist specializing in breast imaging for more than 30 years. He holds Fellowships in the American College of Radiology and the Society of Breast Imaging. Dr. Evans is the director of the Center for Breast Care and professor of radiology at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas, Texas. He joined the faculty in 2002 and was named the George and Carol Poston Professor in Breast Cancer Research. He served as associate vice president for Clinical Imaging Services from 2006-2010. As a leader in breast imaging and the immediate past president of the Society of Breast Imaging, he is a major advocate for breast cancer screening with mammography. His research led to the widespread use of imaging-guided breast biopsy instead of surgery as the initial method to diagnose breast cancer and to the acceptance of digital mammography. As an American Cancer Society volunteer for over 25 years, Dr. Evans has served in numerous capacities in the Society’s High Plains Division and nationally, including President of both the Greater Dallas Board and the former Texas Division. He is a recipient of the St. George medal and has served on the National Board of Directors since 2004.

Dr. LeBlanc, the incoming chair of the board, has more than 30 years of experience in administration in several school districts in California, for which she has received numerous recognitions and awards for outstanding leadership. A Society volunteer for 24 years, LeBlanc has served in various capacities at the community, Division and national levels. She has served on the Society’s California Board of Directors since 1994, including serving as chair from 2004-2005 and was instrumental in encouraging the inclusion of youth in the work of the Society and strategic planning addressing the impact of cancer in diverse communities. A St. George medal recipient, Dr. LeBlanc is a Road to Recovery volunteer, Legislative Ambassador, and ACS National Leadership Development Program coach. She is humbled to be the first African American woman to serve in this position for the American Cancer Society.

As president, Dr. Evans succeeds, Edward E. Partridge, M.D., who remains an officer of the Board as immediate past president. Dr.  Partridge is director of the University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center, and a past chairman of the Mid-South Division regional affiliate of the Society. He is nationally recognized for his work to eliminate cancer health disparities, and is the principal investigator of the NCI-funded Deep South Network for Cancer Control and the Morehouse School of Medicine/Tuskegee University/University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center Partnership. One of the nation’s leading gynecologic oncologists, Partridge serves as chair of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network’s screening guidelines panel for cervical cancer. Partridge has been a Society volunteer for more than 30 years.

Stephen L. Swanson will remain on the board as immediate past chair. Mr. Swanson has more than 25 years of executive experience in business, including senior positions in the energy and banking industries. He has an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School, and currently is president of his own management consulting firm. In addition to serving on the Society’s National Board of Directors, Mr. Swanson has served as chair of the Society’s Pennsylvania Division regional affiliate board of directors. Since 2005, he has also served on the Board of Directors of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action NetworkSM (ACS CAN), the nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society.

Gary M. Reedy, chair-elect, is worldwide vice president government affairs and policy with Johnson & Johnson, and has over 30 years of domestic and international experience in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industry. An active Society volunteer since 2000, Mr. Reedy currently serves as Chair of the National Board Advisory Committee on Transformation, and has served as a member of the National Board of Directors since 2004, first as the ACS Foundation Liaison and then as a Director-at-Large. Since 2005, Mr. Reedy has also served on the Board of Directors of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action NetworkSM (ACS CAN), the nonprofit, nonpartisan advocacy affiliate of the American Cancer Society, and presently serves as Chair. He is also secretary of the C-Change Board of Directors.

Vincent T. DeVita, Jr., M.D., president-elect, is the Amy and Joseph Perella Professor of Medicine, Yale Comprehensive Cancer Center and Smilow Cancer Hospital at Yale New Haven, Yale University School of Medicine, and Professor of Epidemiology and Public Health at Yale University School of Public Health. Dr. DeVita spent his Senior Residency in Medicine, from 1965-66, at Yale-New Haven Medical Center, New Haven, CT. The early part of Dr. DeVita’s career was at the National Cancer Institute (NCI) of the National Institutes of Health where, in 1980, he was appointed by the President of the United States as Director of NCI and the National Cancer Program. While at NCI, he was instrumental in developing combination chemotherapy programs that ultimately led to an effective regimen of curative chemotherapy for Hodgkin's disease and diffuse large cell lymphomas. Dr. DeVita has also served as Physician-In-Chief at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and professor of Medicine at Cornell University School of Medicine until he returned to Yale in 1993.

New vice chair Pamela K. Meyerhoffer has been an active volunteer for the American Cancer Society for nearly 40 years. In addition to her new role, she currently serves as co-chair of the Mission Outcomes Committee, and is on the board of directors for the Great West Division, where she previously served two years as Board Chair. Ms. Meyerhoffer focuses on nonprofit organizational operations, fund development, board governance and sustainability, and healthcare initiatives as a key strategist for the FabCom branding and marketing firm. She is also President/CEO of PKM Consulting. For 27 years prior to 2010, she was President/Chief Executive Officer of Sun Health Foundation and Sun Health Auxiliary. She is a Fellow of the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy and also is an Accredited Business Communicator, bestowed by the International Association of Business Communicators.

Tim E. Byers, M.D., M.P.H., first vice president, is the associate director at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, the associate dean for the Public Health Practice at the Colorado School for Public Health, and a nationally recognized epidemiologist. Originally serving as a peer reviewer in the Extramural Research Grants program and as a member of the epidemiology team planning for Cancer Prevention Study- II analyses, Dr. Byers has been an American Cancer Society volunteer for nearly thirty years.

Incoming second vice president Douglas K. Kelsey has been an active Society volunteer since 1993. He is a Medical Fellow at Eli Lilly and Company, where he specializes in clinical research, especially in the area of ADHD in children, adolescents and adults. His other areas of expertise include pediatrics, infectious diseases, immunology, and microbiology. He was an inaugural member of the Great Lakes Division’s Board of Directors, and has served as both its Vice President and President/Chief Medical Officer. Dr. Kelsey remains an active and dedicated member of the Division Board, and joined the National Board of Directors in 2005. He was presented with the American Cancer Society’s National St. George Award in 2003 for his distinguished service in achieving the Society’s strategic goals.

Daniel P. Heist, C.P.A. will continue to serve in his role as treasurer and bring more than 25 years of auditing and accounting experience. He is director of internal audit at Pennsylvania State University. Mr. Heist has been active with the Society since 1988, and has served in numerous capacities both at the Pennsylvania Division affiliate and on a national level. Prior to joining Penn State, he was senior manager with Deloitte & Touche, LLP, specializing in serving the higher education sector.

Secretary Robert R. Kugler, Esq. is a shareholder in the regional, full-service law firm, Archer & Greiner, P.C., where he is a member of the Firm’s Real Estate Department, which he chaired for a number of years. His professional activities and interests include real estate/banking, community association and non-profit corporation law. In addition to serving both the National Board and the Eastern Division of the Society in a number and range of capacities since 1973, Mr. Kugler is active in several youth- and arts-focused community organizations, including Symphony in C, the Community Foundation of South Jersey, and New Jersey MasterChorale in addition to service to Dartmouth College. He has served on the Society’s National Board of Directors since 2002, and as Secretary and Treasurer, National Board Liaison and member of several workgroups and committees at the American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network since 2007. In his home Eastern Division, Mr. Kugler served as New Jersey - Chair from 1985-1987, and as President from 2000-2002.