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Videos: Our Transformers

Annual Report - Winter 2010

Videos by Deborah Thomas

Transformations of all shapes and sizes take place every day at M. D. Anderson. They occur in our clinics, in our laboratories, in our classrooms and many places in between.

They impact the way we care for our patients, teach our students and support each other in our shared mission to eliminate cancer.

The people at the center of these transformations can be found throughout our campus. Here are a few who do their part as “transformers” to initiate positive change at M. D. Anderson and in the community.

Margaret Bell

Clinical administrative director
Cancer Prevention Center

Finding ways to better serve patients in the Cancer Prevention Center keeps Margaret Bell very busy. She has led several initiatives to improve access to the center’s range of services offered to patients and the healthy public. At the same time, these efforts have helped faculty and staff within the center to function more effectively and efficiently.        Watch video

Millie Hast

Senior management analyst
PBS Administrative Services

Millie Hast is focused on keeping the customer satisfied. When she is not assisting with a patient’s insurance or billing issue, she can be found spreading the word about the importance of customer service. Her efforts to educate employees in Patient Business Services about good customer service have brought home an important message: how we treat people really matters.        Watch video

Joel Helmke

Division administrator
Cancer Prevention and Population Sciences

Making sure others have the financial and physical resources to do their jobs is high on Joel Helmke’s list of priorities. Faculty and staff in the Division of Cancer Prevention and Population Sciences count on his business acumen and administrative creativity to help them move forward the fields of cancer prevention science, population science and health disparities research.        Watch video

Greg Hudgins

Senior facilities project manager
Capital Planning and Management

Greg Hudgins has helped manage a number of important building projects at M. D. Anderson. But none have been more challenging, or more rewarding, than adding 12 floors to Alkek Hospital. His interactions with a huge construction team are instrumental in helping turn an already outstanding facility into one that will allow M. D. Anderson to care for an increasing number of patients.        Watch video

Diane Lee

Operations manager

Diane Lee is a doer. Each day she does everything in her power to advance the process of setting up clinical trials for leukemia patients. She knows that the sooner all of the budgetary and regulatory pieces are in place, the faster patients can benefit from new therapies being evaluated. Working with others across the institution to make this happen is a rewarding experience for her.        Watch video

Sadhan Majumder, Ph.D.


While he’s made key contributions as a scientist at M. D. Anderson, Sadhan Majumder, Ph.D., may be having an even greater impact as a shaper of young minds. His efforts to organize and teach courses in The University of Texas Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, and pass along knowledge to students and young faculty in his lab, help prepare the next generation of cancer researchers.        Watch video

Saneese Stephen

Physician assistant
Investigational Cancer Therapeutics

Patients receiving treatment through the Phase I Clinical Trials Program can count on Saneese Stephen for many things, including education. He takes time to carefully explain treatment options, including trial goals, potential side effects and overall prospects for success. He’s excited to help deliver the latest cancer-fighting agents more quickly from the laboratory to patients.        Watch video

Erika Thompson

DNA Analysis Facility

As manager of one of M. D. Anderson’s core support facilities, Erika Thompson ensures that highly specialized DNA analysis equipment and expertise are available to investigators. When she is not in the lab, she is an instructor in the Molecular Genetic Technology Program in the School of Health Professions. There, as a mentor for student research projects, she has a chance to share her love of science.        Watch video

Dingzhi Wang, Ph.D.

Cancer Biology

Dingzhi Wang, Ph.D., oversees research activities in the lab of Raymond DuBois, M.D., Ph.D., where they are advancing the understanding, diagnosis, treatment and prevention of colorectal cancer. Involved in identifying important molecular targets downstream of the COX-2 enzyme, Dingzhi takes pride in helping translate the lab’s findings into improved treatment and prevention strategies.        Watch video

Colleen Wittoesch

Volunteer patient advocate
Emergency Center

When she accompanied her father to the Emergency Room at M. D. Anderson several years ago, little did Colleen Wittoesch realize that she would end up back there as a volunteer. In her new role as volunteer patient advocate, she serves as a voice for patients and family members. She takes time to listen and helps connect them with resources that meet their physical and emotional needs.        Watch video

Su Zhang

Molecular and Cellular Oncology

As new research staff join his department, they get to know Su Zhang very quickly. He not only shapes their work environment by ensuring equipment needs are met, but also helps them feel at home personally. His efforts support the team’s goal of better understanding molecular and cellular mechanisms of cancer progression to ultimately increase the ability to detect, monitor and treat the disease.        Watch video

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