The members of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) elected seven new officers to ASTRO’s Board of Directors, including Howard Sandler, MD, FASTRO, as President-elect; Michael Kuettel, MD, PhD, MBA, FASTRO, as Secretary/Treasurer-elect; Iris C. Gibbs, MD, FASTRO, and Curtiland Deville Jr., MD, as Chair and Vice Chair, respectively, of ASTRO’s newly formed Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (HEDI) Council; Douglas Martin, MD, FASTRO, as Clinical Affairs and Quality Council Vice Chair; Chelsea Pinnix, MD, PhD, as Education Council Vice Chair; and Casey Chollet-Lipscomb, MD, as Government Relations Council Vice Chair.
The officers will begin their terms in October during ASTRO’s 64th Annual Meeting in San Antonio. Dr. Sandler will serve a one-year term as President-elect, followed by single-year terms as President, Chair and then Immediate Past Chair of the ASTRO Board. Dr. Kuettel will serve one year as Secretary/Treasurer-elect followed by three years as Secretary/Treasurer. Dr. Gibbs will serve a two-year term as HEDI Chair. Drs. Deville, Martin, Pinnix and Chollet-Lipscomb will serve two-year terms as Vice Chairs, followed by two-year terms as Chairs of their respective councils.
In his tenure as President-elect and eventual Chair of ASTRO, Dr. Sandler will focus on the society’s priority issues, including the delivery of high-quality, high-value patient care; advancing equitable oncology care and cultivating a diverse workforce; shaping health policy to support radiation oncologists and their patients; and multidisciplinary collaboration to achieve excellent outcomes for patients. Dr. Sandler said his priorities will be “to advance the field’s commitment to equity and diversity in patient care and our workforce, to support and expand the research that delivers better treatments for our future patients and to work with the governmental entities that shape the future of America’s health care as an advocate for radiation oncology.”
Dr. Sandler is the Ronald H. Bloom Professor and Chair of Radiation Oncology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. He is a nationally recognized expert in genitourinary cancers, with more than a decade of experience as Chair of the RTOG/NRG Oncology committee that designed and oversaw prostate cancer clinical trials.
Dr. Sandler also has an extensive record of service to ASTRO and the oncology field. He currently serves on the Board of Directors as Chair of ASTRO’s Government Relations Council and is a long-term member of ASTRO’s Prostate/GU Resource Panel. He also has been instrumental in leading the development of clinical guidelines and multidisciplinary scientific meetings focused on prostate cancer, and he recently served as faculty advisor to the Association of Residents in Radiation Oncology.
Dr. Michael Kuettel, the new Secretary/Treasurer-elect, is a professor and Chair of the department of radiation medicine at Roswell Park Comprehensive Cancer Center. He has served in multiple leadership roles for ASTRO, including a previous tenure on the Board of Directors as Chair of the Health Policy Council and a current role as ASTRO’s Advisor to the American Medical Association/Specialty Society RVS Update Committee (RUC), which advises Medicare on reimbursement rates. In his tenure as ASTRO’s Secretary/Treasurer, Dr. Kuettel will oversee the budget for the society and work to keep members informed of financial activities. He also plans to continue his work to develop volunteers who are interested in health policy advocacy for the benefit of radiation oncology patients and providers.
Dr. Iris C. Gibbs, the new Health Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (HEDI) Council Chair, is a professor of radiation oncology and Associate Dean of medical student admissions for Stanford Medicine. A nationally recognized expert in radiation neuro-oncology and stereotactic radiosurgery, she also is the senior radiation oncologist on the Stanford Cancer Institute and Lucile Packard Children's Hospital Pediatric Brain Tumor team. Dr. Gibbs has contributed to ASTRO in a variety of roles, including as an advisor to the HEDI Committee. In her role as the first HEDI Council Chair, Dr. Gibbs will work with other ASTRO leaders toward key goals such as improved radiation oncology workforce diversity, better access and equity in patient care, more visibility for people from historically marginalized groups and reduced health disparities.
Dr. Curtiland Deville, the new HEDI Council Vice Chair, is an associate professor of radiation oncology and molecular radiation sciences at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, as well as Clinical Director of Sibley Radiation Oncology and Medical Director of the Johns Hopkins Proton Therapy Center. A leading advocate for health equity, diversity, and inclusion in radiation oncology, Dr. Deville previously chaired ASTRO’s HEDI Committee and was appointed ex-officio to the ASTRO Board in 2020. In his new role, Dr. Deville will continue to spearhead programs and initiatives that prioritize, strengthen and harmonize diversity efforts across ASTRO.
Dr. Douglas Martin, the new Clinical Affairs and Quality Council Vice Chair, is a professor and Vice Chair of Clinical Operations for the department of radiation oncology at The Ohio State University. He also is a military veteran with 20 years of active duty and reserve service in the Navy. The current Chair of ASTRO’s Clinical Affairs and Quality Committee, Dr. Martin has a long-term track record of promoting radiation safety and high-quality patient care in radiation oncology, including nearly a decade of service as a surveyor for ASTRO’s APEx - Accreditation Program for Excellence®. He will continue to focus on these areas in his new Board role, where he will help guide ASTRO’s quality and safety initiatives.
Dr. Chelsea Pinnix, the new Education Council Vice Chair, is an associate professor of radiation oncology at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. She also directs MD Anderson’s radiation oncology residency program and is Vice Chair for the national Association of Directors of Radiation Oncology Programs (ADROP). In addition to her service in early-career education, Dr. Pinnix has extensive experience volunteering for ASTRO education efforts and was a hematology section editor for The Red Journal, ASTRO’s flagship research journal. In her new Board role, Dr. Pinnix will focus on ASTRO’s mission to cultivate and educate a diverse workforce, through efforts such as its Annual Meeting and the ASTRO Academy.
Dr. Casey Chollet-Lipscomb, the new Government Relations Council Vice Chair, is a radiation oncologist and managing partner with Tennessee Oncology. As the current Chair of ASTRO’s Government Relations Committee and Co-chair of the ASTRO Political Action Committee, Dr. Chollet-Lipscomb already is a key figure advocating for radiation oncology in Washington. In her new Board role, Dr. Chollet-Lipscomb will continue to work with government agencies and policy stakeholders on key issues including stable, value-based payment for radiation oncology, an end to burdensome prior authorization requirements and increased federal support for radiation oncology research.
The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) is the largest radiation oncology society in the world, with nearly 10,000 members who are physicians, nurses, biologists, physicists, radiation therapists, dosimetrists and other health care professionals who specialize in treating patients with radiation therapies. For information on radiation therapy, visit RTAnswers.org. To learn more about ASTRO, visit our website and follow us on social media.