The Jack and Beverly Randall Prize for Excellence in Cancer Research
MD Anderson Cancer Center Board of Visitors member Jack Randall and his wife, Beverly, established the Jack and Beverly Randall Prize in 2011 to encourage innovative ideas and the novel thinking necessary to end cancer. Jack is the recently retired president and co-founder of Jefferies Randall & Dewey and a graduate of The University of Texas at Austin.
The Randall Prize alternates annually between researchers and clinicians who demonstrate uncommon foresight and ingenuity as well as dedication to excellence in cancer care. This year’s Randall Prize goes to Guillermina Lozano, Ph.D., chair of Genetics. Recognized for her studies of the p53 tumor suppressor pathway, Lozano is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Among her numerous honors are the Minorities in Cancer Research Jane Cooke Wright Lectureship and the Women in Cancer Research Charlotte Friend Lectureship, both from the American Association for Cancer Research. She is a member of the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Medicine.
Shirley Stein Scientific Endowed Research Award
The Shirley Stein Scientific Endowed Research Award recognizes exceptional clinical research of faculty members with limited project resources. The endowment was established in 2014 by the Stein family and Regina Rogers to honor Shirley’s memory. Her son, Gary, is president of Houston-based Triple-S Steel and has been a member of the MD Anderson Cancer Center Board of Visitors since 2009. Regina, Shirley’s best friend, has been a Board of Visitors member since 1990. The award enables investigators to generate preliminary data to compete successfully for larger grants and federal funding. The 2019 recipients are Michael Tetzlaff, M.D., Ph.D., and Debra Yeboa, M.D.
Tetzlaff, an associate professor in Pathology and Translational Molecular Pathology, serves as medical director of Pathology’s Digital Imaging Laboratory. He has led or collaborated on numerous efforts with clinical collaborators to improve outcomes in treating melanoma. In addition, he has published more than 175 peer reviewed publications and multiple textbook chapters. Tetzlaff is active in national translational research efforts, currently serving as chairman of the Maintenance of Certification Committee for the American Society of Dermatopathology.
Yeboa is an assistant professor of Radiation Oncology. She joined MD Anderson after completing her medical training at Yale in 2016. She is the CNS section education lecture coordinator and has served on MD Anderson’s Faculty Senate since 2017. Her clinical and research interests lie in advancing the clinical outcomes of patients with brain or spine cancers, focusing on health outcomes, health services and comparative effectiveness research.
R. Lee Clark Prize
Established in 2016 and funded by the Estate of Jeanne F. Shelby, the R. Lee Clark Prize recognizes two MD Anderson faculty members, focusing on clinical research and basic/translational research. The Clark Prize recognizes the dedication to scholarship, service and social responsibility embraced by R. Lee Clark, M.D., the institution’s first president.
Jeanne F. Shelby of Dallas was the wife of automotive legend Carroll Hall Shelby and a devoted advocate for cancer research. She left a portion of her estate to MD Anderson in 2013. Her daughter, Sharon Shelby of Dallas, administered the estate gift.
The 2019 recipients of the Clark Prize are Lewis Foxhall, M.D., and Marina Konopleva, M.D, Ph.D.
Foxhall, vice president for Health Policy, has been a leader in community outreach, education and policy for over two decades. Instrumental in cancer control and survivorship initiatives, he has worked to address health disparities in access to cancer prevention, focusing on improving delivery of colorectal cancer screening, mobile mammography and tobacco cessation services as well as programs to promote childhood nutrition and physical activity. He serves on the board of directors for the American Cancer Society’s High Plains Division and Cancer Action Network.
Konopleva, a physician-scientist, is a professor of Leukemia and Stem Cell Transplantation. Her laboratory is studying novel agents in acute myeloid and lymphocytic leukemias. Konopleva has extended her research to include clinical translational investigations and has developed clinical trials based on laboratory discoveries. She also has been an active mentor to trainees including undergraduate, medical and graduate students and to postdoctoral fellows who have trained under her direction in support of her various laboratory grants and projects.
The John Mendelsohn Award for Faculty Leadership
John Mendelsohn, M.D., the third president of MD Anderson, was a visionary leader, a pioneering research scientist and an architect of successful multidisciplinary teams. During his tenure as president from 1996 to 2011, he inspired numerous achievements in innovative research-driven patient care, directed significant expansion of clinical and research facilities and forged a strong research program focused on translating scientific findings to improve and personalize patient care and cancer prevention strategies.
The Mendelsohn Award was established this year to honor Mendelsohn and celebrate his legacy at the institution he led for 15 years. The annual award will recognize an MD Anderson faculty member who reflects Mendelsohn’s leadership, scholarship and values. The inaugural recipient is Karen Lu, M.D., professor and chair of Gynecologic Oncology and Reproductive Medicine. A national leader in cancer genetics, she is co-director of the Clinical Cancer Genetics Program and director of the High Risk Ovarian Cancer Screening Clinic. Lu holds the J. Taylor Wharton Distinguished Chair in Gynecologic Oncology and focuses on treating women with ovarian and endometrial cancers, including those at genetically high risk. She directs the Uterine Cancer Research Program, is principal investigator of the Uterine Cancer SPORE and leads a research team that aims to apply laboratory-based findings to improving the care of gynecologic cancer patients.