National Comprehensive Cancer Network

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NCCN Appoints Dr. Robert Carlson as CEO


The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®), a not-for-profit alliance of 21 of the world`s leading cancer centers dedicated to improving the quality and effectiveness of care for patients with cancer, has appointed Robert W. Carlson, MD, a leading expert in the field of breast medical oncology, as CEO.


FORT WASHINGTON, PA — The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®), a not-for-profit alliance of 21 of the world`s leading cancer centers dedicated to improving the quality and effectiveness of care for people with cancer, has appointed Robert W. Carlson, MD, as Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

Dr. Carlson is highly regarded in the oncology community, and NCCN is extremely pleased to appoint him as CEO. Over the last 17 years, he has brought to NCCN a remarkable devotion to advancing the NCCN Clinical Guidelines, as well as a collegial leadership style, said Thomas D`Amico, MD, Chair of the Board of Directors of NCCN. Dr. Carlson`s years of expertise in oncology have afforded him the ability to lead within a world-class academic cancer institute and develop long-standing relationships and collaborations with other national and international organizations and committees, patient advocacy groups, and institutions working to proliferate the science behind cancer treatment and improve patient outcomes.

Dr. Carlson comes to NCCN from Stanford University Medical Center where he has served as Professor of Medicine in the Division of Oncology and Stanford Medical Informatics, first joining the faculty in 1983. He is the Medical Director of inpatient oncology and hematology at Stanford Cancer Institute—one of the 21 NCCN Member Institutions. In addition, Dr. Carlson has held or holds numerous leadership positions within the Stanford Cancer Institute and Stanford Hospital and Clinics.

Dr. Carlson is a graduate of Stanford University Medical School, and he completed his internship and junior residency in internal medicine at Barnes Hospital Group in St. Louis, Missouri and his senior residency in internal medicine at Stanford University. Dr. Carlson earned a Bachelor of Science with distinction from Stanford University, specializing in biological sciences.

Dr. Carlson began his long-standing collaboration with NCCN when the organization was founded in 1995 and since has held numerous leadership roles, most notably, Representative to the NCCN Board of Directors, Chair of the Breast Cancer Guidelines Panel, Member and Founding Chair of the Breast Cancer Risk Reduction Guidelines Panel, and Chair of the Survivorship Guidelines Panel. Dr. Carlson has chaired numerous task forces at NCCN, has been presented the NCCN Guidelines Achievement Award and the Rodger Winn Award, and has received special recognition and appointment to the NCCN Board of Producers.

Dr. Carlson has served in numerous capacities for NCCN over the past 17 years. My work with NCCN is one of the most rewarding aspects of my career, said Dr. Carlson. I am excited to expand my role in NCCN and to work with each and every one of the world-class member institutions, committees and panels, and the superb headquarters staff to improve the lives of people with cancer. We will also work hard to develop collaborative relationships with other organizations that share our goals.

Dr. Carlson is board certified in Medical Oncology and Internal Medicine. He has authored or co-authored more than 140 scientific articles, book chapters, and reviews and currently serves as Associate Editor, Medical Oncology, for JNCCN – Journal of the National Comprehensive Cancer Network and is a member of the Editorial Advisory Board for The ASCO Post.

From 2001 to 2012, Dr. Carlson was selected by America`s Top Doctors; from 1994 to 2011, he was selected by Best Doctors in America; in 2008, he was presented with the National Physician of the Year Award for Clinical Excellence by Castle Connolly Medical, Ltd.; and in 2010, Dr. Carlson was given the Founding Collaborator Award by the Breast Health Global Initiative (BHGI).

Indeed, Dr. Carlson is highly regarded internationally through his professional collaborations with various organizations, both domestic and abroad. Since 1995, Dr. Carlson has been a member of Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group (ECOG) Breast Committee and is currently a member of American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), and European Society of Medical Oncology (ESMO). Throughout his career, Dr. Carlson has held leadership roles within American Society of Breast Disease (ASBD), BGHI, and American Joint Commission on Cancer (AJCC).

Dr. Carlson will officially join NCCN on January 2, 2013.

About the National Comprehensive Cancer Network

The National Comprehensive Cancer Network® (NCCN®), a not-for-profit alliance of 25 of the world's leading cancer centers, is dedicated to improving the quality and effectiveness of care provided to patients with cancer. Through the leadership and expertise of clinical professionals at NCCN Member Institutions, NCCN develops resources that present valuable information to the numerous stakeholders in the health care delivery system. As the arbiter of high-quality cancer care, NCCN promotes the importance of continuous quality improvement and recognizes the significance of creating clinical practice guidelines appropriate for use by patients, clinicians, and other health care decision-makers. The primary goal of all NCCN initiatives is to improve the quality, effectiveness, and efficiency of oncology practice so patients can live better lives. For more information, visit NCCN.org.

The NCCN Member Institutions are:

  • Fred & Pamela Buffett Cancer Center at The Nebraska Medical Center
  • City of Hope Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • Dana-Farber/Brigham and Women's Cancer Center
    Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center
  • Duke Cancer Institute
  • Fox Chase Cancer Center
  • Huntsman Cancer Institute at the University of Utah
  • Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center / Seattle Cancer Care Alliance
  • The Sidney Kimmel Comprehensive Cancer Center at Johns Hopkins
  • Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University
  • Mayo Clinic Cancer Center
  • Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center
  • Moffitt Cancer Center
  • The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center - James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute
  • Roswell Park Cancer Institute
  • Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine
  • St. Jude Children's Research Hospital/The University of Tennessee Health Science Center
  • Stanford Cancer Institute
  • University of Alabama at Birmingham Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • UC San Diego Moores Cancer Center
  • UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • University of Colorado Cancer Center
  • University of Michigan Comprehensive Cancer Center
  • The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center
  • Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center
  • Yale Cancer Center/Smilow Cancer Hospital