UICC Awards in Cancer Control Presented in China
On 17 August 2010, during the General Assembly of the International Union for Cancer Control (UICC) held at the World Cancer Congress in Shenzhen, China, three recipients of the UICC Awards for Excellence were announced and presented. Dr. Joe Harford, Senior Project Officer at the NCI's Center for Global Health chaired the selection committee and served as master of ceremonies for the presentation of the awards. UICC Awards for Excellence in Global Cancer Control are given to individuals, organizations, and governments whose vision and contributions have a lasting impact on global cancer control across sectors, disciplines and borders.
The UICC Award for Outstanding Volunteer went to Dr. John Stevens, the American Cancer Society's (ACS) Vice-President for Research, who has served since 1989 as the Society's representative to the UICC Fellowship Committee. From 1961-1996 this committee was responsible for reviewing applications for the Eleanor Roosevelt-American Cancer Society International Cancer Research Fellowship. Since 1998, under Dr. Stevens' continuing guidance, the fellowship has been targeted to junior scientists from low- and middle-income countries with a focus on applied and clinical research and has been renamed the American Cancer Society International Fellowship for Beginning Investigators. Because Dr. Stevens could not be in China for the awards ceremony, the award was accepted on his behalf by Dr. John Seffrin, CEO of the American Cancer Society.
The UICC Award for Outstanding Organization went to the Swiss Cancer League, which is a national, charitable, private organization that attends to all aspects of cancer, with the aim of ensuring that fewer people develop cancer and more people can be treated successfully. The Swiss Cancer League supports cancer research, increases public awareness of prevention measures, is committed to early diagnosis and treatment, accompanies and advises patients and their relatives and offers social support. This year the League celebrated its 100th anniversary. The award was accepted by Mrs Marcelle Heller, CEO, on behalf of The Swiss Cancer League.
The UICC Award for Outstanding Governmental Official was presented by Dr. Harford to Academician Nikolay F. Gerasimenko, Deputy Chairman, Committee on Health, State Duma of Russian Federation. Dr. Gerasimenko is a professor and member of the International Academy of Informatics, the Russian Academy of Medical Sciences and in 1995 was elected to the Russian Parliament. Since 2007, he has held the position of First Deputy Chairman of the Duma Committee for Health Care. In 2008, he became the Chairman of the Executive Board for an NGO called A Healthy Society. Dr. Gerasimenko was the principal advocate for the Russian Federal Anti-Smoking Law, which was adopted in 2007 and was instrumental in the ratification of the Framework Convention on Tobacco Control by Russia. He is seen by the Russian society as the country's most important tobacco control leader and works closely with the American Russian Cancer Alliance that is supported in part by NCI.