American Cancer Society has named William Cance, MD, as its chief medical and scientific officer.
Cance — who since 2016 served as deputy director of University of Arizona Comprehensive Cancer Center, and recently as interim director — will focus on integrating the society’s cancer research and cancer control departments to unify its intramural and extramural research. This integration will help fulfill American Cancer Society’s challenge to reduce cancer mortality by 40% by 2035.
Cance also will focus on prevention and early cancer detection , patient caregiver support, global cancer control and programs for health systems engagement.
“Dr. Cance brings to the American Cancer Society impressive breadth and depth of experience as an executive leader, practicing surgical oncologist, researcher and entrepreneur,” Gary Reedy, CEO of American Cancer Society, said in a press release. “His work will be critical as we aggressively pursue our 2035 challenge goal to reduce cancer mortality by 40%.”
Cance’s career has focused on surgical oncology, and he has served as a professor at University of Arizona’s Colleges of Medicine and Pharmacy in the departments of interdisciplinary oncology, pharmacology and toxicology, and surgery. He also is the principal investigator for a 25-year NCI grant to research focal adhesion kinase, a protein involved in cancer metastasis.
After completing his undergraduate and medical degrees at Duke University, Cance completed his residency in general surgery at Barnes Hospital/Washington University School of Medicine and a fellowship in surgical oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. He has held leadership positions at Roswell Park Cancer Institute, University of Florida and The University of North Carolina.
“There are so many reasons why I chose the American Cancer Society,” Cance said in the release. “The history, the research teams, the mission, the volunteers and the visionary leadership are a great fit. I’m honored and excited for the opportunity. The ACS name has been synonymous with progress and hope. My goal is to more rapidly implement the emerging advances in cancer prevention and treatment to patient care and to help this historic organization achieve its mission to further reduce the burden of cancer nationwide and globally.”
Cance will begin his new role Oct. 21.