IU Simon Cancer Center Director Honored

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The American Society of Clinical Oncology has honored Patrick Loehrer Sr. for what they call extraordinary leadership. He is director of the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center, hhgregg professor of oncology and associate dean for cancer research at IU School of Medicine. Loehrer received the inaugural Allen S. Lichter Visionary Leader Award during the organization's annual meeting in Chicago.

He is recognized as a prolific clinical researcher and specialist in the treatment of a variety of cancers, including cancers of the testis, bladder, colon, pancreas and, most notably, the thymus gland. Loehrer's work led to the approval of ifosfamide for the treatment of testicular cancer, and his research related to thymic cancer was recognized with the Exceptional Service Award of the Foundation for Thymic Research. His research group most recently determined the genetic signature for thymic tumors that distinguishes aggressive from non-aggressive malignancies. 

Loehrer is a founder of the Hoosier Cancer Research Network (formerly known as the Hoosier Oncology Group) and served as its chairman for two decades. The network has conducted trials in 20 countries around the world. He also has been instrumental in creating a sustainable oncology health care system in western Kenya where none previously existed. Through the IU-led Academic Model for Providing Access to Healthcare oncology program, approximately 8,000 patients are seen annually and nearly 60,000 women have been screened for breast and cervical cancers because of the efforts of Dr. Loehrer and colleagues. 

The inaugural annual award honors the society’s 2006-2016 chief executive officer, Allen S. Lichter, MD, FASCO, who retired last year after a decade of service in the role. An ASCO member since 1980, Dr. Lichter served the society in several prominent volunteer roles, including president (1998-99) and founding chairman of the Conquer Cancer Foundation Board of Directors (1999), before accepting the position of CEO in 2006. During Dr. Lichter’s tenure as CEO, ASCO reached more than 40,000 members, including more than 13,000 international members and many allied health professionals.

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