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National Cancer Institute (NCI)

Monday, November 8, 2004

NCI Press Office

Ernest T. Hawk to Head National Cancer Institute Office of Centers, Training and Resources

The National Cancer Institute (NCI) today announced the appointment of Ernest T. Hawk, M.D., M.P.H., as director of NCI's Office of Centers, Training and Resources, effective Nov. 14, 2004. Hawk has served as chief of NCI's Gastrointestinal and Other Cancers Research Group, part of the Division of Cancer Prevention, since 1999.

As the new director of the Office of Centers, Training and Resources, Hawk will be responsible for the overall scientific, fiscal, and administrative management of the office, including broad strategic planning, development, implementation and evaluation. He will oversee the four branches of the office — the Cancer Centers Branch, the Cancer Training Branch, the Comprehensive Minority Biomedical Branch, and the Organ Systems Branch — which cover the entire spectrum of cancer research. All of the branches have undergone major strategic changes and expansion over the past several years. Together, their portfolio of grants totals over $500 million.

Hawk brings extensive peer review and grants oversight experience to his new position. His thorough understanding of the program policies and research priorities of NCI will facilitate the Cancer Centers' efforts to make significant contributions to the understanding, prevention, and treatment of cancer.

Hawk is enthusiastic about supporting training, career development and educational grant programs, as well as enhancing cancer research in minority institutions, increasing health disparities research at Cancer Centers, and helping to develop the careers of minority scientists from high school to independent investigator. Hawk also is committed to Specialized Programs of Research Excellence (SPOREs), which foster interdisciplinary research and strive to speed the exchange between laboratory research findings and applied settings involving patients and populations. Through SPOREs, established at NCI in 1992, laboratory and clinical scientists work collaboratively to plan, design and implement research programs that impact on cancer prevention, detection, diagnosis, treatment and control. There are now over 60 SPOREs in place across the United States, with all major cancer sites represented.

"A respected researcher, clinician, and grants manager, Dr. Hawk recognizes and appreciates the role that extramural grant programs, training, and minority research play in the understanding of cancer and in the promotion of translational research," said Karen H. Antman, M.D., deputy director for Translational and Clinical Science at NCI.

Hawk came to NCI in 1993 as a cancer prevention fellow. He then held positions in the Chemoprevention Branch before becoming chief of the Gastrointestinal and Other Cancers Research Group in 1999. Hawk received his medical degree from Wayne State University School of Medicine in Detroit, Mich., and trained in internal medicine at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Ga., and in oncology at the University of California, San Francisco. He received a Masters of Public Health in 1994 from Johns Hopkins School of Public Health in Baltimore, Md.

"I am extremely pleased that Dr. Hawk has accepted this position," said NCI Director Andrew von Eschenbach, M.D. "He brings with him a wealth of experience as both a manager and a researcher, and he will be a strong member of NCI's senior leadership team."

Linda Weiss, Ph.D., has served as acting director of the Office of Centers, Training and Resources since the retirement of its previous director, Brian Kimes, Ph.D., in January 2004. Weiss will remain in her position as chief of the Cancer Centers Branch. Jaye Viner, M.D., M.P.H., will serve as acting chief of the Gastrointestinal and Other Cancers Research Group.

For more information about cancer, visit the NCI Web site at http://www.cancer.gov or call NCI's Cancer Information Service at 1-800-4-CANCER (1-800-422-6237).

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