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Roy Jensen named president of Association of American Cancer Institutes

October 09, 2018

By Kay Hawes

Roy Jensen
Roy Jensen, M.D.

KANSAS CITY, Kan. (October 9, 2018) - Roy Jensen, M.D., director of The University of Kansas Cancer Center, has been named president of the Association of American Cancer Institutes (AACI), an organization of 98 leading academic cancer centers in North America, which includes the 70 National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated centers.

"The university is proud to have one of only 70 NCI-designated centers, and we are even more proud that Dr. Jensen will be leading the efforts of all of these centers, advancing prevention and research nationwide," said Douglas A. Girod, M.D., chancellor of the University of Kansas. "Under Roy's leadership, the KU Cancer Center has continued to thrive, reaching across the state and throughout the region with screenings, preventive care and research to support exceptional cancer care."

Jensen plans to spearhead the development of a comprehensive, clearinghouse of cancer-specific model legislation for AACI cancer centers to share with their state legislators.

"Cancer centers are an enormous force for good and collectively have worked to lower cancer incidence and mortality rates for over four decades," Jensen said. "Good public policy that limits carcinogen exposures or promotes the adoption of healthy behaviors can save hundreds - if not thousands - of lives and represents a critical tool in our efforts to lower cancer mortality."

Jensen has been the director of The University of Kansas Cancer Center (KU Cancer Center) since 2004. He also is the William R. Jewell, M.D. Distinguished Kansas Masonic Professor, the director of the Kansas Masonic Cancer Research Institute, professor of pathology and laboratory medicine, and professor of anatomy and cell biology at the University of Kansas Medical Center. Under his leadership, KU Cancer Center earned designation as a National Cancer Institute (NCI) cancer center in 2012 and had its designation renewed in 2017. Jensen also has overseen the formation of a research consortium with the KU Cancer Center that includes Children's Mercy and the Stowers Institute for Medical Research.

"Dr. Jensen demonstrates his passion for the KU Cancer Center daily, whether he is recruiting top researchers, coordinating research in the search for a cure, speaking with donors or recruiting the region's leading institutions for our consortium," said Robert D. Simari, M.D., executive vice chancellor of the University of Kansas Medical Center. "I believe Dr. Jensen will bring that same passion to his work on behalf of all NCI-designated cancer centers."

Jensen's two-year term began this month at the close of the AACI annual meeting in Chicago.

"I am deeply honored to have been elected as the President of AACI," Jensen said. "It is humbling to follow in the footsteps of such great center directors as Stan Gerson, George Weiner, Ed Benz and, of course, my mentor, Hal Moses. Those superb leaders working in conjunction with our founding Executive Director Barbara Duffy Stewart have made AACI into a tremendous advocate for our nation's most outstanding cancer centers and their patients.  I look forward to continuing this organization's exceptional legacy of service."

About The University of Kansas Cancer Center:
The University of Kansas Cancer Center is transforming cancer research and clinical care by linking an innovative approach to drug discovery, delivery and development to a nationally-accredited patient care program. Our consortium center includes includes cancer research and health care professionals associated with the University of Kansas Medical Center and The University of Kansas Health System; the University of Kansas, Lawrence; The Stowers Institute for Medical Research; Children's Mercy; and in partnership with members of the Midwest Cancer Alliance.

Last modified: Oct 10, 2018