AACR CEO Receives Recognition as “First Lady” of the Intercultural Cancer Council
PHILADELPHIA — Margaret Foti, Ph.D., M.D. (h.c.), chief executive officer of the American Association for Cancer Research, was recognized as a “First Lady” of the Intercultural Cancer Council (ICC) for her outstanding commitment, passion and leadership contributions to the ICC since its inception in 1987.
“I am extremely pleased and appreciative to be included in this group of remarkable women who are heartfelt supporters of the Intercultural Cancer Council,” said Foti. “The incidence, morbidity and mortality rates of cancer among minorities and persons of low socioeconomic status in the United States are disproportionate when compared to the rest of the population. There is an urgent need to develop knowledge and strategies to address this crisis. The cancer community at large has immensely benefited from the education and patient advocacy programs that the ICC has hosted for minorities and the medically underserved over the years. I am truly honored and humbled to be affiliated with this council and to be recognized in such a profound way.”
In celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the Biennial Symposium on Minorities, the Medically Underserved and Health Equity, the ICC recognized special women who have been the foundation of the ICC from the ground up — whether working in tandem or behind the scenes.
Foti is among 22 women who were recognized as an ICC “First Lady” during the Founders’ Award Reception, held on Wednesday, June 27 in Houston, Texas. This year’s Symposium Series is hosted by the ICC and the Center for Health Equity and Evaluation Research, a joint venture of the University of Houston and The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center.
The ICC  promotes policies, programs, partnerships and research to eliminate the unequal burden of cancer among racial and ethnic minorities and medically underserved populations in the United States and its associated territories.
During Foti’s tenure as the CEO, the AACR’s membership has grown to more than 34,000 laboratory, translational and clinical researchers; health care professionals; students; cancer survivors; and research and patient advocates in the United States and more than 90 other countries.
The number of AACR members who are minority scientists has also grown as a result of the AACR’s efforts to increase these numbers and foster the education and training of young and mid-career minority scientists. In 2000, AACR-Minorities in Cancer Research  (MICR) was formed to expand AACR efforts in this area. MICR is a membership group committed to preventing and curing cancer, while meeting the professional needs and advancing the careers of minority scientists. A variety of programs, activities and scholarships supporting minority participation in cancer research are available to members through AACR-MICR.
Foti has received many accolades for her contributions to cancer research and advocacy. Most recently, she received the 2012 Biotech Humanitarian Award from the Biotechnology Industry Organization. Earlier this year, she was awarded Research!America’s 2012 Raymond and Beverly Sackler Award for Sustained National Leadership. In 2010, Foti received the first Margaret Foti Award, which was established in cooperation with the University of Catania Ph.D. Oncology Program and the Italian League Against Cancer of Catania. In 2009, she received the first Margaret Kripke Legend Award from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, the European CanCer Organization Lifetime Achievement Award and a citation from Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter for her dedication to increasing awareness of the importance of cancer research, as well as for her pivotal role in designating May as National Cancer Research Month. Foti was also the first recipient of an AACR award created in her name in 2007. Her numerous other awards and recognitions for work in the United States and abroad include honorary membership in the Japanese Cancer Association, the European Association for Cancer Research and the Hungarian Cancer Society, as well as three honorary doctorates in medicine and surgery.