Opening For Colorectal Cancer Patient Advocate Volunteer

SWOG Cancer Research Network, a member of the National Cancer Institute’s National Clinical Trials Network (NCTN), seeks an experienced patient advocate to participate in the following cancer research committee: 
Gastrointestinal Cancer Committee – Colorectal Cancer

Candidates should have lived experience with colorectal cancer along with cancer research advocacy experience, including clinical trials.  

This is an exciting time at SWOG as we become increasingly patient-centric, with the associated accountabilities and opportunities.

SWOG is committed to diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Please send a brief statement of qualifications (CV) by February 14, 2024, to Bàrbara Segarra-Vàzquez and Anne Marie Mercurio at

About SWOG Cancer Research Network

SWOG designs and conducts multidisciplinary clinical trials to improve the standard of care in preventing, detecting, and treating cancer, and to enhance the quality of life for cancer survivors. SWOG is supported largely through NCI research grant funding and is committed to bringing the voice of the patient into the research process.

Role of the SWOG Patient Advocate

The primary role of the Patient Advocate within SWOG is to bring the perspectives of those most affected by cancer to the group’s work at all stages of clinical trials – define, design, develop, and deliver. Patient Advocates are members of both the Patient Advocate Committee and the given research or research support committee.

Requirements for being a SWOG Patient Advocate
  • Experience with, and a dedicated interest in, cancer research and survivorship concerns, particularly across the disease area for which the candidate is being considered and with experience in clinical trials advocacy. 
  • Personal experience with cancer. Although preference is given to those with lived experience or to those who serve(d) as primary caregiver to a cancer patient, candidates with extensive experience working in an advocacy role are encouraged to apply.
  • This experience should include relationships with a national or regional lay cancer advocacy or survivors’ organization and strong ties to the larger cancer advocacy network. 
  • Willingness and ability to attend all semiannual SWOG meetings and monthly teleconference calls.
  • Ability to work collaboratively, possess technological skills to fulfill all responsibilities in a primarily virtual environment, and meet required deadlines.
Duties of the Patient Advocates to the Group
  • Primary role is to bring the perspectives of those affected by cancer to SWOG.
  • Advocates will provide input across the clinical trial lifecycle:  define, review, design, Implement, and share phases of clinical trials.
  • Advocates attend regularly scheduled SWOG Group meetings. Two meetings are held each year – one in the spring (typically April in San Francisco) and one in the fall (typically October in Chicago). SWOG will pay airfare and ground transportation, hotel accommodations, and meals for each meeting. Advocates are expected to attend the group meetings in person. Advocates will attend their assigned committee’s session(s), and the patient advocate committee meeting but are welcome and encouraged to attend other sessions.
  • Professional development funds are available for the Advocates to use to cover some portion of the costs to attend at least one oncology conference per year.
  • Advocates will be on e-mail distribution list to receive concepts, protocol drafts, and other materials from their Committee when drafts go out for Committee review and provide input on these materials to their Committee. 
  • Advocates will work with the Communications and Public Relations Manager to help create, review, and disseminate information regarding Group clinical trials to regional and local advocate groups involved in patient education and outreach efforts that extend the mission of SWOG.
  • Advocates will provide suggestions on how the Group can best work with the advocacy community.
  • Advocates will provide the Group with suggestions and feedback from the national, local, and regional advocacy community.
  • All Advocates will agree to maintain the ethical and confidentiality standards of the Group. 
  • Advocates serve for five years (renewable after first five-year term for one additional term at discretion of the Group Chair) and receive feedback annually.