2016 Conference Speakers

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Lucile L. Adams-Campbell, PhD
Keynote Speaker

Dr. Adams-Campbell is the Associate Director for Minority Health and Health Disparities Research, Associate Dean for Community Health & Outreach, and Professor of Oncology at Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center. Dr. Adams-Campbell received her Ph.D. in Epidemiology from the Graduate School of Public Health at the University of Pittsburgh, becoming the first African-American female to receive a Ph.D. in epidemiology in the country. Dr. Adams-Campbell has received numerous awards including the election to the Institute of Medicine in October 2008, and the Induction into the D.C. Hall of Fame for her research focus on Health Disparities. She also is a graduate of the Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) program for women. She has received gold medallions awarded from both of her alma maters - University of Pittsburgh and Drexel University, for outstanding contributions to the field of public health and health sciences. She was appointed to the 2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack. Her areas of research focus on addressing health disparities with particular emphasis on cancers that disproportionately impact African Americans, primarily breast cancer. Dr. Adams-Campbell’s research expands to the areas of of clinical trials, cancer epidemiology and etiology, and lifestyle interventions. Dr. Adams-Campbell has more than 185 publications.

William J. Blot, PhD
Keynote Speaker

William J. Blot, PhD, is Associate Director for Population-based Research at the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center, Ingram Professor of Cancer Research in the Department of Medicine, Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC), and Chief Executive Officer of the International Epidemiology Institute (IEI). Prior to co-founding IEI in 1994 and joining VUMC in 2000, Dr. Blot directed research into the causes of cancer for 20 years at the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Blot’s research has yielded key information regarding the distribution, determinants and means of prevention of human cancers. Dr. Blot is principal investigator and designer of the ongoing Southern Community Cohort Study (SCCS), a landmark investigation undertaken to assess the causes of cancer and other chronic diseases among southerners and determinants of racial disparities in health. Findings from this cohort of 86,000 adults, two-thirds African American, have already documented multiple demographic, lifestyle and biologic factors that may contribute to racial differences in risk and outcome of cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular and other diseases.

James E.K. Hildreth, PhD, MD

Dr. Hildreth, a leading HIV/AIDS researcher, is President and Chief Executive Officer of Meharry Medical College, former dean of University of California–Davis College of Biological Sciences. Previously, he was director for the Meharry Medical College Center for AIDS Health Disparities Research; program director of the Research Centers in Minority Institutions; director of the Meharry Center for Translational Research; associate director at the Vanderbilt-Meharry Center for AIDS Research; and professor of internal medicine, microbiology, and immunology. At the Center for AIDS Health Disparities Research, he worked on a cream that kills the human immunodeficiency virus (HIV).

Rick A. Kittles, PhD

Dr. Kittles helped establish the National Human Genome Center at Howard University. As co-director of molecular genetics, he directed large-scale, high thorough input genotyping and DNA sequencing projects. From 1997 to 2004, Kittles helped establish and coordinate a national cooperative network to study the genetics of hereditary prostate cancer in the African-American community. This project, called the AAHPC study network, successfully recruited over 100 multiplex African-American hereditary prostate cancer families and serves as a model for recruitment of African-Americans in genetic studies of complex diseases. Well known for his research of prostate cancer and health disparities among African-Americans, Kittles has also been at the forefront of the development of ancestry-informative genetic markers, and how genetic ancestry can be used to map genes for common traits and disease. Currently, Dr. Kittles is Professor in the Division of Urology, Department of Surgery and Director of the Division for Population Genetics within the Center for Applied Genetics and Genomic Medicine, at the University of Arizona Health Sciences Center.

Beti Thompson, PhD
Keynote Speaker

Dr. Beti Thompson is a member of the Public Health Sciences Division of the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Much of Dr. Thompson's previous and current work focuses on the Latino population, with a specific emphasis on cancer prevention and cancer screening for breast, cervical, and colorectal cancers. Dr. Thompson's focus on health disparities research is exemplified by a number of projects, including "Hispanic Community Network to Reduce Cancer Disparities" and "Partnership for a Hispanic Diabetes Prevention Program." Both of these projects take place in the Yakima Valley of Washington State. The projects work with local Community Advisory Boards to guide and lead the activities to reduce health disparities of cancer and diabetes.