(Rye Brook, NY, July 10, 2018) - The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS) announced today five new appointments to its board of directors, including four influential research scientists; Casey Cunningham, M.D., Christopher Flowers, M.D., Janice L. Gabrilove, M.D. and Ruben A. Mesa, M.D. Their appointments build strength in the diagnosis and treatment of lymphoma and myeloproliferative neoplasms as well as methods for alleviating harmful effects of chemotherapy.
John Greene, senior vice president, Salesforce.com, Inc., and a blood cancer survivor, also joined the LLS Board. Greene led Salesforce fundraising efforts to a total of $4 million in donations to support the LLS mission.
Rounding out Board news, Jorge Benitez, LLS board member for eight years, was named board chair, and Bart Sichel and Kathleen Meriwether, both LLS board members, are now vice chair and at large, respectively, while Ralph Lawson, FHFMA, CPA continues to serve as LLS secretary/treasurer.
"The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society is at the forefront of cancer cures, and today I'm pleased to announce significant new board and staff leadership appointments to help us accelerate our mission," said Louis J. DeGennaro, PhD., LLS president and CEO. "Our new board members bring world-class scientific and medical strength and business acumen, along with their passion and commitment to helping patients. With the addition to our leadership team of Rob Beck as chief operating officer, I'm confident that LLS is well positioned to maintain growth in our pursuit of a world without blood cancer."
LLS Board & Leadership Announcements:
- Board Chair Jorge Benitez, Ft. Lauderdale, FL: Previously vice chair of the LLS Board of Directors, Jorge Benitez has been an active LLS board member since 2010. He retired from Accenture in 2014 as chief executive of North America. Prior to this role, he served as the chief operating officer for products, the largest of Accenture's five operating groups. Benitez was selected by Hispanic Business Magazine as one of the Top 100 Most Influential Hispanics in the United States.
- Board Member Casey Cunningham, M.D., Houston, TX: Dr. Cunningham is the chief scientific officer of Santé Ventures, a venture capital fund focused on creating and investing in companies in healthcare and life sciences. He received his fellowship training in oncology and hematology at Harvard Medical School, where he subsequently served on the faculty. He was also one of the founding members of the Division of Experimental Medicine at the Brigham & Women's Hospital in Boston.
- Board Member Christopher Flowers, M.D., Atlanta, GA: Dr. Flowers is a professor in the Department of Hematology and Medical Oncology at Emory University School of Medicine. He is a member of the Emory Stem Cell and Bone Marrow Transplant team and director of the Emory Lymphoma Program. He is also a member of InterLymph, an international collaboration of experts in lymphoma epidemiology that is focused on finding the causes for lymphoma.
- Board Member Janice L. Gabrilove, M.D., New York, NY: Dr. Gabrilove is the James F. Holland Professor of Medicine, associate director, Education & Training for the Tisch Cancer Institute and director of the Clinical Research Education Program at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai and the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences. She is the recipient of a patent for the discovery of human granulocyte colony stimulating factor (G-CSF), and was the first to demonstrate that it could alleviate certain harmful effects of chemotherapy on blood cell production.
- Board Member John Greene, San Francisco, CA: John Greene is senior vice president of Customer Centric Engineering and Site Reliability Engineering at Salesforce.com, Inc. Greene is a hands-on technical executive, with a passion for building, growing, coaching and managing high caliber, motivated teams in enterprise. His worldwide team ensures customer success by triaging, troubleshooting, debugging, and proposing fixes to complex customer issues and incidents on the Salesforce platform.
- At Large Kathleen Meriwether, Philadelphia, PA: Kathleen Meriwether is the Americas Life Sciences leader for Ernst & Young LLP's Forensic & Integrity practice. She specializes in assisting health sciences companies with global risks and compliance assessments and regulatory compliance analysis. Prior to joining Ernst & Young, she served as an assistant U.S. attorney in the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Pennsylvania. She previously spent more than 16 years with Bristol-Myers Squibb Company in a number of legal, regulatory affairs and compliance positions, including division counsel for the Oncology and Immunology franchise.
- Board Member Ruben A. Mesa, M.D., San Antonio, TX: Dr. Mesa is director of the Mays Cancer Center, the newly named home to the UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center, a National Cancer Institute-designated Cancer Center. He has been principal investigator or co-principal investigator in more than 70 clinical trials for patients with myeloid disorders and played a lead role in various FDA approvals. He has been a funded investigator from the National Cancer Institute throughout his career and currently is co-principal investigator of the NCI funded Myeloproliferative Neoplasms Research Consortium.
- Vice Chair Bart Sichel, Princeton, NJ: Executive vice president and chief marketing officer at Burlington Stores, Bart Sichel has been instrumental in shaping the strong bond between Burlington, a national off-price retailer, and LLS – a relationship that has generated more than $32 million for blood cancer research and patient services since 2001. Prior to joining Burlington, Sichel was a principal at McKinsey & Company, where he specialized in marketing and e-commerce for clients in a wide range of industries.
- Rob Beck, LLS Chief Operating Officer: Beck comes to LLS from Citibank, where he capped a stellar 30-year career, most recently as chief operating officer of the U.S Retail Bank, with responsibility for the retail branches and ATM distribution network, technology, M&A, product management and small business banking. Beck led a business with $4.5 billion in revenue serving four million customers.
About The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society
The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society® (LLS) is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to fighting blood cancer. The LLS mission: Cure leukemia, lymphoma, multiple myeloma, and improve the quality of life of patients and their families. LLS funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world, provides free information and support services, and is the voice for all blood cancer patients seeking access to quality, affordable, coordinated care.
Founded in 1949 and headquartered in Rye Brook, NY, LLS has chapters throughout the United States and Canada. To learn more, visit www.LLS.org. Patients should contact the Information Resource Center at (800) 955-4572, Monday through Friday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. ET.