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Promise and Progress - McConkey Named Director of Greenberg Bladder Cancer Institute

Promise & Progress: Special Issue Bloomberg - Kimmel Institute for Cancer Immunotherapy
Issue No. 2016

McConkey Named Director of Greenberg Bladder Cancer Institute

Date: March 23, 2016

David McConkey was appointed director of the Johns Hopkins Greenberg Bladder Cancer Institute, whose members include experts from the Kimmel Cancer Center, the Brady Urological Institute, and the school of medicine’s departments of Radiation Oncology and Molecular Radiation Sciences, Surgery, and Pathology.

The institute was established in 2014 with a $15 million gift from Baltimore-area commercial real estate developer Erwin L. Greenberg and his wife, Stephanie Cooper Greenberg, and a $30 million investment from The Johns Hopkins University. Its faculty, which already has drawn $500,000 in research grants, is dedicated to advancing the scientific understanding of bladder cancer and improving its treatment.

“We are thrilled to bring David on board,” says William Nelson, Marion I. Knott Professor and director of the Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center.  “He brings a wealth of knowledge about the biology of bladder and genitourinary cancers, and has proven leadership skills in a top-notch institution. We are especially grateful to William Isaacs, Ph.D., for serving as interim director these past 19 months. He led the team through the two rounds of competitive grant awards, the establishment of a national external advisory board and a series of outreach initiatives to physicians nationwide.”

“We conducted a very thorough recruiting process where we evaluated the best, most highly qualified candidates in the country, and David stood out to us as someone with both the experience and the collaborative spirit to direct the Greenberg Bladder Cancer Institute to its greatest level of success,” says Theodore DeWeese, Sidney Kimmel Professor and director of the Department of Radiation Oncology and Molecular Radiation Sciences

McConkey comes to Johns Hopkins after serving as director of urological research at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. While there, he played a leadership role in MD Anderson’s multidisciplinary bladder cancer research program since its inception in 1998 and served as co-principal investigator of the MD Anderson Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in Bladder Cancer, which is now in its third continuous cycle of funding from the National Cancer Institute. He is also chair for translational medicine for the Genitourinary Cancers Committee of the Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG), and has been involved in setting agendas for the Bladder Cancer Advocacy Network’s (BCAN’s) clinical initiatives. McConkey has published more than 200 articles in peer-reviewed journals, served on 90 advisory committees at MD Anderson and won numerous teaching awards for his work.??

“David’s recruitment is an outstanding example of high-impact philanthropy. Because of the generous support of Erwin and Stephanie Greenberg, who have been tireless advocates for this and other important causes, we are poised to set new standards for innovation, treatment and discovery in the field of bladder cancer,” says Alan Partin, professor and chairman of the Department of Urology and Jakurski Family Director of The James Buchanan Brady Urological Institute at Johns Hopkins.

“I am firmly convinced that team science is the most rapid path to progress,” McConkey says. “I look forward to serving as the hub of an institutional and international community of researchers who share a commitment to advancing the scientific understanding of bladder cancer and improving its treatment.”