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The Front Line
The Front Line: Charles D. Blanke, MD, SWOG Chair


Spring Meeting: Opportunities Knock, and Knock Some More

Feb 21, 2014 - We continually strive to make our semiannual live SWOG Group meetings better meet the needs of our members, and to provide ever more opportunities within them for focused collaboration. One of the new initiatives we tested out at last fall's meeting, thanks to the inspiration and energy of Dr. Ellis, SWOG Vice-Chair for Translational Medicine, was the holding of "office hours" by SWOG leaders and partners. This new venture gave any and all members a chance for informal discussions and networking with many of the investigators who chair committees, as well as representatives from our basic science members, Cold Spring Harbor and Jackson Labs. A major goal was to identify common research challenges and opportunities, bridging the disease sites and cancer control efforts.

These sessions were rated as valuable by our members, and we will hold them again at the spring Group Meeting. In fact, we will substantially expand our efforts. Several more of our partners from Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory and The Jackson Laboratory are scheduled, as are other experts in basic science areas. Our colleagues from the SWOG Biorepository at the Nationwide Children's Hospital Biopathology Center are graciously making themselves available, as is Dr. Meg Mooney, who will also present on the BIQSFP program at Plenary I. Members will have the opportunity to interact with senior admin from the Group Chair's Office, as well as SWOG's Stats Center.

A new initiative is Friday "Meet-the-Professor" type lunches with SWOG leaders; Drs. Craig Nichols (Executive Officer CCOPs), Powel Brown (Co-Chair, Prevention Committee), and Howard Hochster (Chair, GI Committee) are on tap for MTP lunches in May. These are career development sessions over a box lunch that offer a chance for early-career investigators to interact with senior leaders in an informal, small group setting. Each lunch will be limited to no more than eight participants.

The full list of additional opportunities, which include an investigator workshop on biomarkers and plenary talks by Lori Minasian, Neal Meropol, and Skip Burris, will be posted on the Group Meeting website once registration opens next week. Please register in advance for an MTP lunch and/or prescheduled office hours, or plan to stop by the open office hours tables. I'm looking forward to seeing you at a terrific May meeting in San Francisco!


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