This morning, President Joe Biden announced the appointment of Monica Bertagnolli, MD, FACS, FASCO to be the next Director of the National Cancer Institute. She will be the 16th Director and the first woman to lead this Institution of global significance. Dr. Bertagnolli joins NCI as one of President’s Biden’s signature initiatives, Cancer Moonshot, sets bold new goals to reduce cancer death rates by at least 50% in the United Sates over the next 50 years, while creating a more supportive experience for patients and families.
Dr. Bertagnolli served as the chief of Surgical Oncology at the Dana Farber Cancer Institute from 2007- 2018. She is currently a professor of oncology surgery at Harvard Medical School, a member of the gastrointestinal Cancer and Sarcoma Disease Center at the Dana Farber / Brigham Cancer Center, as well as a surgeon at Boston’s Brigham and Woman’s Hospital. Dr. Bertagmolli is also the CEO of Alliance Foundation Trials, LLC, a not-for-profit corporation that conducts international cancer clinical trials.
This pioneer in medicine has dedicated her life to improving the lives of patients and their loved ones living with cancer. At the Brigham and Woman’s Hospital Dr. Bertagnolli said she is ‘incredibly humbled to have the opportunity to serve as the next director of the National Cancer Institute.’ She looks forward to bringing hope to the entire cancer community through the work of the NCI.Robert S.D. Higgins, MD, MSHA, president of Brigham and Woman’s Hospital said, ” Dr. Bertagnolli’s credentials and tremendous accomplishments throughout her career have prepared her for this key role in our nation.”
According to statistical models of the American Cancer Society, in 2021 they estimated 1.9 million people were diagnosed with a new cancer. Xavier Becerra, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary said “Cancer knows no bounds and neither should our efforts to prevent death.”
As a nation we wish Dr. Monica Bertagnolli and her colleagues at the National Cancer Institute the greatest and quickest success in fighting the insidious disease that touches us all.