Board of Directors

Between assemblies, a board of 17 directors, elected by the General Assembly, act as the governance body of UICC.

The Board of Directors elected on 2 October 2018 by the General Assembly in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, will serve until December 2020

The following individuals were elected:

HRH Princess Dina Mired


HRH Princess Dina Mired




Anil D'Cruz


Board Members

Click on the names below to see their profiles.

Wahid Al Kharusi – Oman

Wahid Al Kharusi

Wahid Al Kharusi
Oman Cancer Association

Muscat, Oman

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

My experience as a Clinician and a surgeon for 34 years, and a diplomat as an ambassador in the Foreign service responsible for Sub-Sahara Africa’s 44 countries and that I was also involved globally in senior positions in Asian and international Sports medicine boards and my work in Global Road Safety, also my work and experience with WHO Geneva and EMRO region I am driven to apply for the membership of the highly esteemed UICC Board of Directors. 

As a husband of a 4 times cancer survivor and as one of the founder members of Oman Cancer Association (OCA) since 18 years ago, I believe and I am convinced that I will be active and have time to support UICC and the Cancer patients, their families, the communities at large and Healthcare providers both nationally and globally. I can support the LMIC as a board member more with the network I have of the International Cancer Prevention Consortium (ICPC). I believe with my background and global experience in Clinical work and diplomacy, I will not only serve UICC well, but I will make a difference and be effective in the promotion and advocacy of cancer prevention and control. I am convinced, comfortable and believe in the excellent, efficient and productive work UICC is doing and also the efficient organisational setup and will be an honour to serve as a board member of UICC as I know I will be productive.


What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

Convinced with the excellent work and results of UICC, and my conviction that defeating cancers is in the concept of prevention and control especially in creation of awareness, human resource development, and research, and my commitment to performing what I believe in, I am sure that I will prove to be an excellent candidate for the board of UICC.

I am a professional, respectable, with a high sense of personal integrity, innovative, respect for diversity, with compassion and passion with what I am involved with.

My background as a clinician and as a diplomat with international connections together as a husband of a four times cancer survivor I am convinced I will be able to share my experiences. Hence my membership in the board will be effective in promoting the UICC policies, especially in the regions that are mostly affected and poorly addressing the cancer status.

My network and experience nationally and globally, especially with the ICPC (International Cancer Prevention Consortium) and with my relationship with all the stakeholders will support the building of a strong and a cohesive infrastructure for cancer prevention and control at all levels.

Ulrika Arehed – Sweden

Ulrike Arehed Kagstrom

Ulrika Arehed Kagstrom
Secretary General
Swedish Cancer Society, Cancerfonden

Stockholm, Sweden

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

During my leadership at the Swedish Cancer Society one of my main focuses has been on addressing the unequal cancer care across Sweden. To bring awareness to this issue, we have successfully initiated broad discussions on this subject with decision makers and professionals alike. The political impact and equal cancer care are central to my involvement and areas I would like to continue to focus on within the framework of UICC. My wish is to contribute to the shaping of the vision and the strategy for UICC to meet and address current and future challenges. We need to advance the implementation of existing policies in order to meet the World Cancer Declaration Targets. UICC can, with its gained experience and insight into global cancer control, play a key role in the implementation of the cancer resolution from 2017, both on international and national levels. Additionally, we know that 30-50 % of all cancers can be prevented and UICC has a key role in reinforcing the importance of cancer prevention. Through learning and exchanging knowledge and experience with the Board members and colleagues within the UICC network, I hope to identify strategies that continue to make an impact on the global stage and establish equal cancer care. UICC and the Board of Directors have a crucial role in ensuring cancer’s place on the global health agenda and I would be honoured to be able to bring together the experiences from different member organisations to reduce the global cancer burden.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

Since 2016 I have been the Secretary General of Cancerfonden, the largest fundraising organisation in Sweden. The core activity is financing research. As Sweden’s largest organisation in the field of cancer, we actively participate in the general debate about the disease and we play a strong advocacy role. For ten years, I worked for the Swedish Red Cross as Secretary General and previously as Deputy Secretary-General. It provided me with a comprehensive understanding of international work, collaboration and resource mobilisation through the Red Cross Red Crescent Movement. My previous role has given me extensive experience in negotiating with governments, financiers and member associations. I have participated in international work groups that covered capacity building, field reviews, global branding and strategy. Together with the Swedish government, I have driven the issue of Gender and International Humanitarian Law. Since 2017, I have been proud to be the chairman of the Royal Dramatic Theater, and previously as vice president at the Swedish National Theater. These opportunities has widened my perspectives and deepened my leadership skills in crisis and change management. My leadership style can be described as calm, open and with an ability to create commitment and stability. This together with my international experience forms a solid foundation to contribute to UICC's international work.

Sally Cowal – United States

Sally Cowal

Sally Cowal
Senior Vice President, Global Cancer Control,

American Cancer Society

Washington DC, United States

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

I would like to be on the Board to contribute my experience in public policy and public health to fighting the global cancer battle. Where you live shouldn’t determine if you live! I know how to get things done to amplify cancer control advocacy messages and programme implementation both at country-level and above country level through living and working in Latin America, the Eastern Mediterranean and Asia and being the Director of External Relations at UNAIDS as the AIDS pandemic grew. Under my leadership, we got HIV AIDS prevention and control on the radar screen of policy makers around the world. We need to do the same for cancer, today a bigger burden of disease than AIDS, but one which is only marginally talk about and which lacks resources. Cancer in Africa is a more feared and more stigmatised disease than HIV. UICC can lead the fight to change this reality. I have spent the last two decades in key positions at leading civil society organisations such as the American Cancer Society. I would like to be on the Board to share the lessons of non-profit management from these organisations to make UICC the most powerful voice in the cancer world. To be successful in controlling the global cancer tsunami we need a powerful message and a good organisation. I would like to contribute to both.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

During my first term on the UICC Board (2017-18) I have had an opportunity to serve on three key committees: Governance, Membership and the ad hoc steering committee on strategic planning. If re-elected to the next term I will be able to get right to work on the major challenges and opportunities to implementing the vision outlined for UICC in the new strategic plan, which I helped to develop. Continuity is also an issue at UICC as several board members are term-limited. I would serve as an experienced hand to assist the President and President-Elect in carrying out their mandate. Substantively, I can and will contribute to the UICC advocacy priorities such as the elimination of cervical cancer and treatment for all as the American Cancer Society senior executive responsible for ACS global work in these same areas. I am a member of the WHO expert committee on the implementation of the cancer resolution passed by the WHA in 2017.

Jeff Dunn – Australia

Jeff Dunn

 Jeff Dunn
Professor and Chair, Social and Behavioural Science
University of Southern Queensland

Brookwater, Australia

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

I have 30 years experience in cancer control. A social and behavioural scientist, my leadership skills are evidenced by my effectiveness in bringing organisations together to reduce the burden of cancer on the community. I draw on a distinguished career as CEO of Cancer Council Queensland, current Board Member and Treasurer of UICC and have recently taken up the position of Professor and Chair of Social and Behavioural Sciences at the University of Southern Queensland. As a global advocate for patient-centred care my focus is the translation of epidemiological and psycho-oncological research into practice. International achievements include gaining endorsement from cancer control organisations worldwide for quality standards in psychosocial care. My commitment is to enable civil society to assist individuals, communities and health authorities to combat cancer. Relevant experience includes work with NGOs in LMICs to implement regionally-specific cancer control programs. I am Immediate-past President Asian Pacific Organization for Cancer Prevention and convened the first Asia-Pacific Cancer Leaders’ Summit with UICC; and in January 2018 with colleagues at UICC and Nepal convened the inaugural International Cancer Congress in that country. I have served as Chair Reach to International and Secretary of the International Psycho-oncology Society. If re-elected, I will continue to apply my experience, skills and influence to advocate for the World Cancer Declaration.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

I have been working with UICC for 25 years and currently serve as Board member and Treasurer. Previously I have held numerous UICC positions including: Chair of the Asia Pacific Cancer Society Training Grants Program, Strategic Leader Capacity Building, Regional Coordinator Asia Pacific Region and Chair of Reach to Recovery International. In addition to leading social and behavioural science research at the University of Southern Queensland, I hold a Professorial appointment with Griffith University School of Medicine. I have a central focus on the social and behavioural aspects of cancer control, spanning the continuum of research from prevention and early detection to supportive care and quality of life. As an active researcher in this field I have dedicated my career to the development of novel strategies that underpin cancer prevention, promote community awareness of the disease and improve quality of life after a cancer diagnosis. My service to cancer control includes policy, programme development, advocacy and translation of research into community-based interventions. I am a Graduate of the Australian Institute of Company Directors and have extensive experience on national/state-based Boards and cancer-related advisory committees. I was appointed an Officer in the Order of Australia in June 2014 for distinguished service to medical administration through leadership roles with cancer control organisations and to the promotion of innovative cancer care.

Daiming Fan – China

Daiming Fan

Daiming Fan
China Anti-Cancer Association (CACA)

Beijing, China

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

In the past 30 years, the world cancer incidence has been increasing at the rate of annual average of 3%-5%. Especially in China, cancer has been accounted for more than 20% of overall deaths and about 4 million people are diagnosed with cancer in 2015. 

As we all know, UICC is the leading cancer NGO in the worldwide. It has strong mission which is dedicated to unite the cancer community to reduce the global cancer burden, to promote greater equity, and to integrate cancer control into the world health and development agenda. The World Cancer Declaration launched by UICC has become the strategic plan for global cancer control which provides the direction and guideline to cancer societies from all over the world.

Facing to the challenge of global cancer burden, I, Daiming Fan, as the President of CACA, the Academician member and Vice President of Chinese Academy of Engineering, Vice President of Asian Pacific Association of Gastroenterology, and the Executive Board Member of Asia Oncology Society, have the responsibility to make efforts to promote cancer control not only in China, but also in the world. I do hope I could play a more critical role in spreading UICC ideal, taking action on cancer prevention and control, and to reach the goal of reducing cancer incidence and mortality rates in China through working along with UICC. 

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

As the candidate of UICC Board of Directors, I am passionate for contributing myself to realise the vision of UICC. I am not only an oncologist, but also a gastroenterologist. My research concentrates on GI tract including gastrointestinal cancers, colon and other diseases. I am not only a clinician, but also a basic research scientist. Since 1989, I have published over 600 international journal articles and 24 books, and obtained 56 international and domestic invention patents. I am not only the leader in scientific research institutes, but I am also taking the leaderships in Chinese government, such as the VP of Chinese Academy of Engineering and the Committee Member of the National People’s Congress of China. 

Last July, I was elected to be the President of CACA. CACA is a leading cancer NGO in China. During my presidency, CACA rapidly expands its network with individual members increased from 50,000 to 150,000, 16 new professional societies set up. There are 31 local anti-cancer associations across China. In 2018, CACA establishes branches in U.S., Australia, and Hong Kong and Macao area respectively. UICC China spoke is located in CACA. 

CACA attaches high importance to seeking for business partnerships to improve capacity building, and has obtained sufficient financial supports. CACA is turning to be the most influential cancer NGO both in China and the world. If I join in the Board, I will devote myself and be faithful to be the board member of UICC.

Cristiana Fonseca – Portugal

Cristiana Fonseca

Cristiana Fonseca
Health Education Department Coordinator
Portuguese League Against Cancer

Porto, Portugal

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

I must say this was a challenge I haven’t thought about until I was asked if I wanted to proceed. But having in mind my personal history and my professional career, “yes” was the only possible answer. I’m a psychologist and I work in the Portuguese League Against Cancer since 1999. The truth is that when I started to work I didn’t knew a lot about “cancer”, “risk factors” or “prevention”. It was my first and only job and I have invested a lot in order to achieve the knowledge and the skills needed to work with all the target groups (from kindergarten till seniority) and in several contexts (in spite of the fact that schools were and still are our main field of work). I coordinate the health education department in the north of Portugal and since 2016 I’m the national coordinator as well. In fact, throughout the years, one of the tasks I was asked for was representing my institution at national and European levels (in ENYPAT –European Network of Young People and Tobacco – or ECL – European Cancer Leagues, for instance) and in several areas such as tobacco, breast cancer, sun prevention or HPV. As a result, in the last 20 years I achieved more knowledge, not only about cancer and risk factors or about people and their beliefs and perceptions, but above all about institutions and the power of networking. And this is why I think that belonging to the UICC Board of Directors is a meaningful challenge: it allows working together in a worldwide dimension in order to fight cancer.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

In the last year I was invited to integrate the World Cancer Day Advisory Board, what was simultaneously an honour and an opportunity. It was my first experience in a worldwide network and it allowed me to understand as different countries and cultures see cancer and cancer fight. Nevertheless it was also a reality that all of us agreed that, in order to succeed, we must be creative and innovative. I think I have these characteristics besides the fact I don't fear to work and apply myself on each task I'm assigned.

For the last 20 years I have been working in a national and European level, representing my institution and my country on network meetings, conferences, task forces, etc. And in 2017 I was the leader of the organising committee of ECTOH – European Conference on Tobacco or Health.

Portugal is a small country comparing to others but we do a lot of work in cancer prevention: we were one of the countries with more activities on the World Cancer Day Map of Impact… and we do cancer prevention activities all the year and not only on the 4th of February. We are always trying to innovate and I think I would be able to represent the culture of the Mediterranean countries and, of course, the more than 220 million Portuguese speaking worldwide. Also, I guess it could be helpful that I speak English fluently but also French, Spanish and even understand a little bit of German.

Nick Grant – United Kingdom

Nick Grant

Nick Grant
Executive Director, International Partnerships
Cancer Research UK

London, United Kingdom

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

Cancer is now recognised as a global health and development priority. The coming years bring an enormous opportunity for us to make progress globally, leveraging new funding and partners around the world. They also bring a drive towards greater alignment in the global fight against cancer, to more collaboration and partnership, and to a greater focus on equity. Working for a large cancer society like Cancer Research UK, I am passionate about how the global cancer community can collaborate more closely, learn from each other and build common approaches to tackle the disease globally, as well as tackling the specific issues in our own countries.

I have served as a member of the UICC Board for the last two years, playing an active role in both the Board and a number of sub-committees and played an active role in the World Cancer Leaders’ Summit and World Cancer Congress. I have been inspired by the work of the organisation and of its members, and by the desire to innovate and continue to grow the ambition. Being a member of the Board has helped me to join the dots between the work of my organisation and the global fight against cancer. I am passionate about finding new opportunities for collaboration and finding ways to bring together the exceptional talent and experience that exists in member organisations around the world.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

As a current Board member, I would look to bring continuity in terms of Board involvement and in the implementation of both existing UICC plans and the new UICC strategy which will be shared at this Congress. In the last two years, in addition to contributing to the Board, I have contributed as a member of the Partnerships Committee, the Capacity Building Committee, and as part of the Strategy Task Force and McCabe Task Force.

My career has given me experience of commercial and non-profit organisations in a number of sectors, and in over 25 countries. I have worked in the International NGO sector, developing a new global governance model at Save the Children, and supporting local programmes in Colombia and the Philippines in particular. At Cancer Research UK, I have broad experience across fundraising, research funding, and policy, and have led our efforts to work more closely with other cancer societies in various parts of the world, leading to a number of tangible partnerships.

I believe passionately that UICC has an important role to play in convening cancer societies and other member organisations from around the world, and supporting us all in growing our impact. I am excited to take forward some of the exciting ideas in the new UICC strategy, particularly in working to deepen engagement between UICC and its members.

Anne Lee – Hong Kong S.A.R., China

Anne Lee

Anne Lee
Head, Department of Clinical Oncology / Vice Chairman
The University of Hong Kong / The Hong Kong Anti-Cancer Society

Hong Kong S.A.R., China

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

As a clinical oncologist providing medical care to cancer patients, I witness the sufferings caused by cancer and strive to help patients to overcome this devastating disease. As an academic, I teach medical students how to become a good oncologist to provide holistic cancer care for patients and their families. As a cancer researcher, I explore for the most effective cancer treatment, yet there is still gross inequity to appropriate care. As a leading member of the HKACS, I promote cancer education both for the public and health care professionals, support cancer research, launch charity programs to assist patients with financial difficulty in getting new expensive cancer drugs, and advocate comprehensive cancer plan for our community. However, I keenly feel the inadequacy of impact by a single voice and local effort. 

I strongly believe that concerted global advocacy is crucial for saving more lives and minimising sufferings. UICC is taking a leading role in the global fight against cancer and transforming global vision into actions. The unique network with leaders across the world provides an invaluable opportunity for raising global awareness on cancer burden and influencing policy making on sustainable comprehensive actions for reducing cancer mortality. Furthermore, the growing international network provides an excellent platform for sharing of experiences and engaging top international experts to help low-middle income countries. 

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

  • I have been serving in the UICC Board of Directors since 2016 – in addition to overall strategic planning and governance, I have been contributing to the planning of Congress and Summits. The experience/networking built will further enable me to contribute more to the UICC mission. 
  • I have been serving in the UICC TNM Expert Advisory Panel since 2001 and appointed the Coordinator of the Global Advisory Group liaising with chairpersons of National Cancer Staging Committee since 2013. The TNM cancer staging system is fundamental for guiding clinical decision; the adoption of the UICC system in the WHO books on tumour classification is a vivid recognition of our contribution. 
  • I have facilitated the launching of the World Cancer Atlas (Chinese Version) and symposiums to advocate cancer control in line with UICC initiatives.
  • As a clinical oncologist working in the public health system, I have in-depth professional knowledge of the problems regarding the organisation of cancer treatment and the possible solutions. Furthermore, I am well-connected with other influential oncologists worldwide and can engage them in contributing to global needs.
  • I am leading a project for International Atomic Energy Agency to improve outcomes for nasopharyngeal cancer in Low-Middle Income Countries. 
  • My resourcefulness as shown by the successful charity program that engage pharmaceutical companies to donate expensive cancer drugs to needy patients in Hong Kong.

Alejandro Mohar – Mexico

Alejandro Mohar

Alejandro Mohar
Head, Epidemiology Unit,
Instituto Nacional de Cancerología, México

Mexico City, Mexico

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

At the beginning of my career, as a researcher in cancer epidemiology in Mexico; later, as General Director of the Mexican National Cancer Institute where I promoted and encouraged the operation of public policies for cancer control - among others the Seguro Popular - for the prevention, diagnosis, treatment and palliative care for thousands of patients that arrived for medical care at this oncological center. Since 1997, I attended the UICC Congress and saw the commitment of this organisation in promoting, establishing and evaluating interventions worldwide. Particularly, in low and middle-income countries, where there are opportunities for a better cancer control.

During my 10 years as Director of the Mex-NCI, I realised that these opportunities can be reached with a more active, pro-positive, and passionate use of different instruments that today are available for the civil society, i.e. health education, primary prevention, and access to optimal medical care by the health systems in place. The governments have this responsibility; however, sometimes they forget it and is the role of organisations like UICC to remind them what should be their priorities.

Send a message to better define actions that could have an impact for communities in much need. For all these reasons It will be an honour to be member of this Board, and of this extraordinary commitment of UICC for each one of the cancer patients worldwide.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

My background makes me a good candidate. I am Pathologist, and got a Doctoral degree in Epidemiology at the Harvard School of Public Health in 1990. After graduating I came back to my country, and since then I worked at the Mexican National Cancer Institute. I have done extensive research and public health interventions for a better control of cancer in Mexico, and multiple international collaborations within the network of Cancer Institutes in Latin America and the USA.

From 2003 to 2013, I was General Director of the Mex-NCI. During my tenure I collaborated with all national and several international organisations committed to cancer control. I learned from them the concept and value of advocacy, and understood that the best way to fight cancer is through a team effort. I also actively participate in the UICC-meetings worldwide, and identify opportunities for cancer control.

From November of 2013-2016, I was member of the International Narcotic Control Board of the United Nations. I learned the huge needs to access of palliative care worldwide. I worked to change this reality, and as member of the UICC-Board we could continue this effort.

Finally, I actively participated in the organisation and operation of the past UICC Congress that took place in Mexico City last November of 2016. For all these reasons, I strongly believe that there is every reason to believe that I am a competitive candidate to be elected as Member of the Board of Directors. 

Ana Cristina Pinho Mendes Pereira – Brazil

Ana Cristina Pinho

Ana Cristina Pinho Mendes Pereira
Director General
INCA - Brazilian National Cancer Institute

Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

As the Director General of the Brazilian National Cancer Institute for the past two years, I have been able to contribute to increase the quality of care services, research projects and public policies advanced by the Institute, by evoking international collaboration as the means to advance the Institution’s reach and scope of action. In this approach, we have strengthened ties in South-South Cooperation both with Latin America and with Portuguese Speaking Countries in Africa, reinforcing the Brazilian commitment towards the 2030 Agenda for SDGs in regard to the NCDs targets. Such actions are aligned to the global effort called upon by the 2017 WHO Resolution on Cancer Prevention and Control in the context of an integrated approach. I have been able to further develop my management and leadership skills by facing the great challenge to lead the technical branch of the Ministry of Health working on Cancer Prevention and Control in one of the world's biggest public health system. As INCA’s representative I have participated in numerous international fora and decision-taking instances discussing global health and cancer control and ways to enhance global partnerships towards this goal. At UICC, I have participated in the 2017 World Cancer Leader’s Summit and in the first Latin American meeting of the C/Can 2025 initiative, as a health sector expert discussing new financing possibilities and sustainable solutions for the treatment of cancer in the challenge cities.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

Firstly, I believe my experience having acted in different contexts, ranging from care to management, from the general health to the broad cancer context, is certainly an asset to contribute to my role in the Board of Directors. I have over 25 years of experience in cancer care and management, including research and teaching positions. I hold a Bachelor Degree in Medicine and specialisations in Anesthesiology and Innovative Leadership in Health. I have been responsible for the Medical Residency Program in Anesthesiology at INCA and I have been President of the Rio de Janeiro Society of Anesthesiology, which gave me opportunities to improve my management and leadership skills. I have also developed extensive research on Preoperative anesthesia, Opioid free anesthesia, Multimodal opioid free anesthesia, Pain Management, Immunology and Surgical Oncology. Moreover, I have broad experience both in private and public health systems, with several international collaborations in Latin America, targeting the improvement of health management and Health Care innovation. I believe such partnerships have given me expertise to stimulate greater collaboration among Board members and to contribute to intercontinental cooperation with UICC members and stakeholders, in order to deal with the global cancer burden.

Danielle Rodin – Canada

Danielle Rodin

Danielle Rodin
Radiation Oncologist
Princess Margaret Cancer Centre

Toronto, Canada

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

UICC is a unifying force that has made cancer control prominent on the world health and development agenda through its diverse membership and unwavering commitment to improving cancer control. I am motivated to serve on its Board of Directors because of my strong belief in its mission to reduce cancer disparities and to improve the lives of cancer patients everywhere. Serving on the Board would be a unique opportunity to work with its dynamic members to enhance the impact of UICC and to engage future generations of cancer leaders, who can become a community of ambassadors for UICC and extend its strong voice on the global stage. 

Through my roles as a cancer physician, health policy researcher, and global health advocate, I understand that multiple approaches are needed to advance cancer control. I twice received the UICC Young Leader award and have strong technical expertise in global health, health economics, and community activism, all of which can be directed to advance UICC’s strategic goals. Through my work, I also have close collaborative relationships with members from countries around the world. As UICC continues its role as a world leader in cancer control and grows as an organisation, these collaborative relationships, together with my skill set, experience, and shared vision, would allow me to make a valuable contribution. It would be a great honour to contribute to the mission of the UICC and to work with the outstanding leaders on its Board of Directors.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

My experience in clinical practice, health policy, research, and in large international initiatives make me a strong candidate for the Board of Directors. Princess Margaret Cancer Centre, where I work, has a longstanding commitment to UICC and I have been personally engaged in its Congresses and Leaders’ Summits. I led the economic analysis for the UICC/Lancet Oncology Global Task Force on Radiotherapy for Cancer Control and, while on that Task Force, built the GlobalRT advocacy movement for radiotherapy, which mobilised professionals from around the world to raise awareness about disparities in access to radiotherapy through films, blogs, and other multimedia– all essential tools to promote UICC’s important work.

As a practicing cancer physician, I understand the frontline challenges in cancer control and, as a health policy researcher, I appreciate the evidence that is needed to engage health systems in capacity-building partnerships. My research is focussed on the economics of cancer and on improving access to care across all resource settings. This work has been recognised through invitations to work with the World Health Organization and the International Atomic Energy Agency, and has generated ongoing international collaborative relationships. I would bring these experiences in advocacy, policy, and global health to the UICC Board of Directors, along with the perspective of the new generation of leaders and a deep personal and professional commitment to cancer control.

Zainab Shinkafi-Bagudu – Nigeria

Zainab Shinkafi-Bagudu

Zainab Shinkafi-Bagudu
Medicaid Cancer Foundation

Birnin Kebbi, Nigeria

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

Understandably, due to a high burden of infectious disease with limited resources, the political will to mainstream cancer control into the health agenda of LMICs is poor. However, the political privileges of being the wife of a governor, combined with my professional career as a physician and passionate cancer advocate has enabled me to demonstrate that cancer can be comfortably accommodated in our health agenda.

Membership of the UICC board will provide me with a unique platform to harness global opportunities to build local capacities to combat cancer not only in Nigeria, but in Africa. Using experiences garnered from grassroots mobilisation for cancer control in my community, I can positively impact implementation of global commitments towards achieving the goal of 25% reduction in Non-Communicable Diseases (NCD) premature deaths by 2025.

For UICC to meet its goal of uniting the cancer community to reduce global burden of cancer, deliberate attention is required in Low and Middle-Income Countries (LMIC) where I operate and where the burden of the disease is highest.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

I have been working in the cancer control space for more than 10 years in Nigeria and have been exposed to both international and national cancer fora. I set up the Medicaid cancer Foundation [MCF], as a non-profit body dedicated to improving the quality of life of cancer patients by providing treatment support and reducing the burden of cancer. 

MCF organises many innovative fundraising and awareness events round the year including World Cancer Cay activities. This includes the now famous annual Cancer Awareness walk. We have built human capacity building for screening of common cancers by training nurses in 24 Local Government areas in Kebbi State. In 2017, MCF initiated summits to strengthen cancer registration in Nigeria in 2017. Currently we are supporting the development of a cancer control plan for Kebbi State and a population cancer registry in the state. All these activities are personally supervised by me as Chair of MCF.

At national level, I served in a ministerial committee to upgrade cancer treatment facilities and I am currently advocating for a presidential task force for improving national cancer control.

I have collaborated with international organisations such as Gavi, West African Division of the International Academy of Pathology and the Cherie Blair Foundation.

The foregoing experiences over a lengthy period, will assist my contribution to achieve the objectives of the UICC, and makes me a good candidate to serve on its Board.

Saunthari Somasundaram – Malaysia

Saunthari Somasundaram

Saunthari Somasundaram
The National Cancer Society of Malaysia

Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

Every problem, even one as big and complex as cancer, is an opportunity.

While gravely concerned about the rising global cancer burden, as the President of the National Cancer Society of Malaysia (NCSM), I am also excited about the chance to halt the deluge.

About 20 years ago, I started at NCSM as the clinician. As the focus of cancer control – especially in Asia – shifted from treatment, to support, to early detection and prevention, I’ve led NCSM to expand, adapt, and drive these initiatives.

We’ve since battled for better cancer care, early detection of breast cancer, vaccination and prevention of cervical cancer, and stronger tobacco control.

NCSM has thus evolved from a medical-centric organisation to one that leads awareness and behavioural shift programmes, advocates for policy change, urges regular surveillance, and complements the work of governments and NGOs. Today, we lead and inspire the fight for cancer control in Malaysia.

Most importantly: we unite and empower LMICs in cancer control. Today, with cancer being on the global agenda, and with strategies that are aligned with the SDGs, it is the golden hour to further our reach, bridge the gaps, and strengthen countries that are affected the most.

Our hosting of the World Cancer Congress in Kuala Lumpur this year will enable us to build on the work we have started nationally and regionally. It gives me no bigger honour than contributing to the platform from which NCSM has benefited the most – UICC.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

Having been on the Board of UICC for two terms, I now Chair the Membership – and am a member of the Capacity Building – committee. In the latter positions, I prompted greater investment into engagement and capacity building of UICC members and countries in need. 

I am committed in ensuring a continuous enhancement of member benefits that reflect changing requirements. I’m also dedicated to the development of programmes that empower organisations to enact change.

In my tenure as President, the National Cancer Society of Malaysia (NCSM) has created greater visibility of UICC within the region via new and existing networks. Championing for the interest of low resource countries through these excellent relationships have resulted in a higher commitment in capacity building and in cancer control. 
I hold positions at the Malaysian Council for Tobacco Control, chair NCD Malaysia, and am on the Boards of International Cancer Information Service (ICISG) and ASEAN NCD Alliance.

My experience in the medical, advocacy, policy, operations and public health aspect of cancer provides me a comprehensive picture of the benefits, challenges, needs and gaps of cancer control in ASEAN.

This, along with my ongoing initiatives, passion, and drive, continue to broaden my vision of how we can minimise the threat of cancer. I believe that sharing – as well as learning – from the UICC Board will help widen it.

Ann Steyn – South Africa

Ann Steyn

Ann Steyn
Immediate Past President of RRI, Vice President of RRI / Board member Reach for Recovery South Africa
Reach to Recovery International /  Reach for Recovery South Africa

Cape Town, South Africa

Why would you like to be on the UICC Board of Directors?

  • I have served on the UICC board from 2016-2018 during which time as a cancer patient survivor I have been able to voice the concerns of many cancer patients. I am passionate about decreasing the inequalities that are found in health systems.
  • Being part of the UICC Board involved in the 2017-2018 Strategic Review and Business Plan I would very much like to continue the work that has already been started.
  • I sit on the Capacity Building Committee, a new committee whose terms of reference have yet to be approved, but whose brief covers many of the UICC flagship projects which I support.
  • I am joint chair of the Patient Group Pavilion at the WCC. This Pavilion shows the breadth of the UICC's work in the cancer field:- from interacting with large business organisations, the World Economic Forum, WHO and yet concerned with patients and their needs.
  • I am the UICC Regional Advisor for Africa. There will be a Regional meeting at the upcoming WCC to discuss collaboration amongst members and to showcase collaborative initiatives.
  • I sit on the Membership Committee. In the past 2 years membership has grown to over 1061 and we confidently expect it to increase by the end of this year.
  • For the reasons above I would consider it a privilege to be re-elected to the UICC Board so that I can continue to work with other members of the Board towards the long term goals of the UICC and to make a difference in cancer control not only in my region but globally.

What makes you a good candidate for the UICC Board of Directors?

As a cancer survivor and a committed volunteer, working both locally and internationally on various cancer forums, I have been exposed to grass roots realities that affect cancer patients. 

I was instrumental in training Reach to Recovery groups in 14 African countries. These groups today support cancer patients, run educational outreach programmes, and advocate for suitable health policies in their countries.

I was invited to serve on the support task team of the Breast Health Global Initiative that developed policy guidelines for the management of breast cancer in low and middle income countries.

As President of Reach to Recovery I led the team that organised the successful RRI Conference in Cape Town 2013. 

As a member of the Cancer Alliance we have advocated government successfully to make cancer a National Priority, to develop a National Cancer Control Plan and to improve Cancer Registries and Data. At present we are advocating for Patent Law Reform:- "patent ever greening" sees thousands of patients die because they are unable to afford the life saving medicines. 

As a cancer survivor it would be a privilege to be able to represent the thousands of cancer patients whose voices are not often heard on international boards.

Should I be re-elected as a UICC Board member I would be able to ensure their needs are always part of the global focus of the UICC. It is for this reason and those above that I would like to serve on the UICC Board.