The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health invites applications and nominations for the position of chair of the Department of Human Oncology.
The Department of Human Oncology was established in 1975, bringing together physicians and scientists from radiation oncology, medical oncology and cancer biology whose academic activities include clinical cancer care, clinical and laboratory research and education. Highly regarded as a clinical and research powerhouse, the productivity of the department is paired with a vibrant culture that fosters respect, mutual support and well-being. The department serves as the cornerstone of the renowned UW Carbone Cancer Center, which received National Cancer Institute designation in 1973 as one of the first six Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States.
The department’s setting within a top-tier university and the nation’s first School of Medicine and Public Health is key to success. Bridging research faculty and clinicians from many areas of cancer treatment, the department is focused on three primary areas: clinical radiation oncology, radiation oncology physics and cancer biology. These three groups work to ensure delivery of the highest quality clinical care for cancer patients, foster innovative clinical and translational research, and provide a rich educational environment for radiation oncology and radiation oncology physics residents, medical students, graduate students and other trainees.
Faculty engage in research across a wide variety of cancer types aimed at moving the boundaries of state-of-the-art radiation oncology treatment. Research is a collaborative effort between clinicians, medical physicists and cancer biologists, as well as researchers in disciplines of strength at the university, such as bioinformatics, radiology and medical physics. Investigators in the Cancer Biology Division study the factors and processes that affect the development, proliferation and spread of cancer, often working with clinical partners to lead, design and execute clinical trials. The Medical Physics Division brings comprehensive support and a high level of expertise to the safety and quality delivery of precision radiation to patients.
The department provides a rich research and training environment that offers exceptional educational opportunities for undergraduates, health professions students, basic science graduate students and postdoctoral fellows. Its training programs are designed to develop leaders who will advance the practice of radiation oncology, physics and cancer biology. The department offers a four-year ACGME-accredited residency training program in radiation oncology and a two-year CAMPEP-accredited radiation oncology physics residency training program. It is also home to an endowed fellowship program — the UW Bentson Research Fellowship — that recruits, trains and facilitates the careers of highly motivated cancer physicians and scientists focused on translational cancer research.
The next chair will be an innovative leader in the field of radiation oncology who brings strong clinical, research and education experience to bear, as well as skills in strategic management and leadership. They will possess a commitment to diversity and inclusion and to furthering the department’s culture of collaboration, innovation and service.
The successful candidate will promote the department’s status as a world leader in the field of radiation oncology by leading its mission to provide exceptional clinical care, outstanding medical training, cutting-edge research and education to improve human health.
“For me, the Wisconsin Idea is the clear vision for what a public university is and should be. I want to celebrate it as a national and even global model for why public universities matter. It’s my goal to keep our teaching, research, and outreach missions strong, to support our students, and to make the university a more diverse and inclusive place to live, learn and work.” — Jennifer L. Mnookin, Chancellor
Since 1848, this campus has been a catalyst for the extraordinary. As a public land-grant university and one of the most prolific research institutions in the world, UW–Madison is home to those who are driven by a desire to both explore new worlds and to apply new ideas to real-world problems.
With a total annual budget of over $3.7 billion, including more than $1.38 billion in annual research expenditures, UW–Madison has been in the top 10 in national research spending every year since 1972. The campus is home to more than 25,000 faculty and staff and 49,000 undergraduate, graduate and professional degree students. Members of the student body represent all 50 states and 116 countries. The university was ranked the number one public university and fourth overall in Washington Monthly’s 2021 College Guide and Rankings and is ranked 10th among public institutions in U.S. News & World Report’s 2022-23 rankings of best colleges.
The Wisconsin Idea — the principle that the university should improve people’s lives beyond the classroom — has been guiding the efforts of UW–Madison Badgers for more than a century. The university has been dedicated to studying poverty and social inequity for 50 years, is consistently ranked among the top large schools for producing Peace Corps volunteers and boasts 20 Nobel Prize winners among its faculty and alumni.
School of Medicine and Public Health
The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health (SMPH) is recognized as an international, national and statewide leader in education, research and service. Founded in 1907, it transformed into the nation’s first School of Medicine and Public Health in 2005 to integrate the principles and power of interwoven medical and public health approaches in all of its missions.
With more than 5,500 employees, including over 2,000 faculty, the school’s engagement spans the entire state of Wisconsin and includes a deep commitment to improving population health. This commitment manifests itself in innovative models that serve as paradigms for the rest of the country.
Members of the school rapidly translate discovery into application and continually foster synergies between clinical care, education and research. Consistently ranked among the nation’s top medical schools, SMPH has established high-performance academic programs that are intentionally distributed across the entire spectrum of academic medicine. Its faculty members hold appointments in 27 departments — 17 in the clinical sciences and 10 in the basic sciences. The faculty is composed of some of the nation’s leading researchers, educators, and clinicians. This includes several National Medal of Science recipients and National Academy of Science honorees.
Mission and values
UW SMPH strives to carry out its mission of advancing health and health equity through remarkable service to patients and communities, outstanding education and innovative research. It upholds the values of integrity and accountability, compassion, diversity, equity and inclusivity, and excellence. The school’s Shared Guidelines for Professional Conduct help the SMPH community embody these values in their daily activities.
Fostering a diverse and inclusive community is important both as an end in itself and as a valuable driver of eliminating health disparities. The school strives to be comprised of a diverse, inclusive academic community committed to excellence and equity in health; wellness through teaching and learning, clinical service and advocacy; and research in all forms of biological science, population health science and health care.
SMPH is dedicated to creating an inclusive, collaborative, respectful and welcoming environment in which all faculty, students and staff will thrive. This effort is referred to as Building Community, and includes a call to action for every SMPH member to examine not only our intent, but our impact — “Every Person. Every Action. Every Time.”
UW Health is the integrated health system of the University of Wisconsin–Madison, serving more than 720,000 patients each year in the upper Midwest and beyond with 1,849 physicians and 22,000 staff at seven hospitals and more than 80 outpatient sites. The health system’s annual budget is approximately $3.8 billion. UW Health is governed by the UW Hospitals and Clinics Authority and partners with UW School of Medicine and Public Health to fulfill patient care, research, education and community service missions. In 2015, SwedishAmerican, a community health system based in Rockford, Ill., became part of UW Health and in 2021, the UW Health brand was introduced and began rolling out across Northern Illinois. UW Health Hospitals, which includes University Hospital on the UW–Madison campus and UW Health East Madison Hospital on the east side of Madison, has been ranked No. 1 in Wisconsin for 12 years in a row by U.S. News and World Report.
University Hospital is one of only 25 U.S. hospitals named to Newsweek’s “Top 100 Global” list, which includes hospitals in 11 countries around the world. American Family Children’s Hospital is also nationally ranked as a top children’s hospital. UW Health has been designated by the Human Rights Campaign Foundation as a Leader in LGBTQ Healthcare Equality in the Healthcare Equality Index for several years.
Department of Human Oncology
The Department of Human Oncology at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health has a vibrant history of caring for cancer patients and researching new cancer treatments. The department serves as the cornerstone of the University of Wisconsin’s renowned UW Carbone Cancer Center, which received National Cancer Institute designation as one of the first six Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the United States in 1973. The department has effectively integrated the academic activities of the UW Carbone Cancer Center into the overall fabric of the School of Medicine and Public Health and UW–Madison.
The Department of Human Oncology currently houses 45 faculty members: 18 clinical radiation oncologists (five are MD/PhD physician-scientists leading laboratory research programs), 18 radiation oncology physicists, four PhD cancer biologists and five emeritus professors. Growth over the last decade has more than doubled the size of the faculty and tripled the total research funding. The department’s leadership structure is dedicated to supporting a diverse workplace and promoting an environment of equity for all faculty, staff, learners and patients.
Faculty physicians currently provide care at four locations:
- University Hospital & Clinics: Madison-based clinics see approximately 2,300 new cancer patients each year and provide a comprehensive array of radiotherapy treatments. This clinic treats about 125 patients per day.
- UW East Clinic: This clinic currently treats about 15-25 patients per day and houses one Varian Truebeam linear accelerator that will sunset in fall of 2024 when the Eastpark facility opens.
- UW Johnson Creek: A joint venture between UW Health, Watertown and Fort HealthCare, this clinic typically has 15-20 patients under treatment on a single Varian linear accelerator.
- VA Hospital: Newly opened in 2022 in the William S. Middleton Memorial Veterans' Hospital, this growing practice currently houses one Varian linear accelerator, with plans to add a second in 2025.
- Eastpark Medical Center (opening in 2024): The new UW Eastpark Medical Center is a state-of-the-art, seven story outpatient facility that is in late stages of construction and scheduled to open in fall 2024. Radiation oncology will have a commanding footprint at Eastpark (about 52,000 square feet) with three modern linear accelerators, two HDR suites with dual energy CT, full CT and MRI simulation capacity and a fully integrated Proton Center including one conventional gantry room and one novel upright positioning room to provide upright proton beam therapy for patients.
- Beyond the Madison area: The department’s scope of influence extends well beyond Madison. When SwedishAmerican, based in Rockford, Ill., became part of UW Health in 2015, this included the UW Health Carbone Cancer Center Rockford. UW Health has also partnered with ProHealth Care to support their providers, who serve patients living in Waukesha County and surrounding communities. Physicians from these regional partnership centers engage in education, clinical care and community service missions in partnership with department faculty.
Research in the department covers cancer biology, medical physics, radiobiology and clinical research. Major federal grants in the department have totaled more than $60 million in the last five years. Investigators engage in highly collaborative work across the university and beyond that spans the continuum of basic, clinical and translational research. Areas of strategic emphasis include immunomodulatory targeted radionuclide and radiotherapy, translational radiotherapy research in head and neck cancer, liquid and radiographic biomarkers of radiotherapy response and resistance, theranostics and personalized medicine.
Multiple areas of clinical physics research are aimed at improving patient outcomes and facilitating high quality patient care. Researchers in this area use advanced simulation capabilities and perform treatment planning and treatment delivery research using state-of-the-art equipment. Investigators studying cancer biology use proteomic and genomic screening, advanced mouse models and studies of human tissues to advance knowledge in radiation biology, genomics, molecular targeting and immunology. They work with clinical partners to design and execute clinical trials aimed at finding better ways to prevent, diagnose and treat cancer. In addition, radiobiology labs in the department have robust programs focusing on DNA damage repair mechanisms and radio-sensitization/protection, viral-driven tumors, radiopharmaceutical therapies, tumor biomarkers for prognosis and response prediction, among others.
In addition to providing widely accepted standard of care treatments, the department has consistently maintained a strong clinical research portfolio. A clinical research program in the department provides administrative, IRB/IND, budgetary and data management support for clinical trials initiated by department investigators. The group supports the clinical research efforts of department physicians and physicists with many industry-sponsored, investigator-initiated and cooperative group studies underway at any time. Presently, the department is enrolling cancer patients on 15 cooperative group clinical trials and 12 investigator-initiated clinical trials. The department sees patients as playing an essential role by participating in national and institutional clinical trials and allowing collection and research evaluation of tissue samples.
Qualifications and attributes of leadership
The successful candidate will have a compelling vision for the future of radiation oncology in a leading public academic institution and medical center. The chair will possess proven leadership and management skills as well as an outstanding academic background and dedication to furthering diversity of the faculty, staff and students in the department and establishing an inclusive and professional work environment. The chair will provide strategic, academic and administrative leadership of the highest quality to this distinguished department in its patient care, research, teaching and service missions.
Applicants must have a MD, MD/PhD, DO or equivalent degree(s); board certification in radiation oncology; eligibility for a Wisconsin Physician license; have a substantial record of achievement in administrative leadership, clinical care, research and teaching across the full continuum of learners; and a strong academic background that would qualify for appointment as a tenured professor at the University of Wisconsin–Madison.
Located on an isthmus between two lakes, Madison is the capital city of the state of Wisconsin. Madison has been voted:
- No. 1 Best Place to Live in the USA (Liveability, 2022)
- No. 1 City for Most Successful Women Per Capita (Forbes, 2019)
- No. 1 City for Best Work-Life Balance (SmartAsset, 2022)
- No. 7 Best City for STEM Professionals (CEO World, 2020)
- No. 4 Best State to Practice Medicine (WalletHub, 2022)
- No. 2 Best City for Biking (People for Bikes, 2020)
- No. 2 Fittest City in the U.S. (ACSM American Fitness Index, 2022)
- No. 2 Best Cities for Millennials (rent.com, 2020)
- No. 4 Greenest City in the US (Zippia, 2020)
- No. 1 Best Place to Retire (Money, 2020)
- No. 1 Best Place in the U.S. for Raising Children (DiversityDataKids.com 2020)
- No. 1 Best College Football Town in America (Sports Illustrated, 2019).
Madison’s technology economy is growing rapidly, and the region is home to the headquarters of Epic Systems, Exact Sciences, American Family Insurance, American Girl (Mattel), Sub-Zero, and Lands’ End, as well as many biotech, healthcare IT and health systems startups.
The city of Madison and the University of Wisconsin–Madison acknowledge that they occupy ancestral Ho-Chunk land. The School of Medicine and Public Health recognizes the health inequities faced by Native communities and pledges facilitate learning and take action across all of its missions.
Madison is the second largest city in the state, with a city population of approximately 273,000 and regional population of over 1 million. It is the fastest-growing county in the state of Wisconsin. The city is within easy driving range of Chicago and Milwaukee. Madison offers numerous unique neighborhoods and commercial areas including the Capitol Square, State Street, Willy Street, Shorewood Hills, Maple Bluff, and Hilldale. Suburbs and surrounding smaller communities include Sun Prairie, Middleton, McFarland, Verona, Cottage Grove, Waunakee and Fitchburg.
Madison is home to one of the strongest local food scenes in the country with several James Beard Award winners, gastropubs and farm-to-table restaurants. From April to October, the Capitol Square hosts the impressive Dane County Farmers’ Market, the largest producer-only farmers’ market in the country. The city is rich with cultural offerings such as the Overture Center for the Performing Arts, Orpheum Theatre, Concerts on the Square, Jazz at Five, UW-Madison Mead Witter School of Music and Hamel Music Center, Madison Symphony Orchestra, Madison Opera, Madison Ballet, UW–Madison Chazen Museum of Art, Madison Museum of Contemporary Art, Wisconsin Historical Museum, and Madison Children’s Museum, among others.
The city has a dedicated athletics fanbase which largely centers around the University of Wisconsin–Madison. Sports venues include Camp Randall Stadium, the Kohl Center, LaBahn Arena, Wisconsin Field House and the Alliant Energy Center. Madison is home to Forward Madison FC, the first professional soccer team in the city, as well as the Madison Mallards, a college wood-bat summer baseball league team. Marquee endurance sports and specialty sporting events include IronMan Wisconsin and IronMan 70.3, Reebok CrossFit Games, Madison Marathon, and many national and international championship competitions.
Please send nominations to:
Allan Brasier, MD, and Thomas Grist, MD
Co-chairs of the Chair of the Department of Human Oncology Search Committee
c/o Benjamin Schultz-Burkel, DMA
4299C HSLC, 750 Highland Avenue, Madison, WI, 53705-2111
To apply, please visit the UW-Madison jobs website, using the "apply now" button below. Candidates must apply through this portal to be considered as a candidate. Applicants will be asked to upload a CV and personal statement/cover letter detailing the following:
- Your interest in this position and vision for the Department of Human Oncology.
- A summary of your background and qualifications for this position.
Diversity, equity and inclusion
The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health has a deep and profound commitment to diversity both as an end in itself but also as a valuable means for eliminating health disparities.
To receive full consideration, please apply by Sept. 24, 2023. The position will remain open and applications may be considered until the position is filled.
Unless confidentiality is requested in writing, information regarding applicants must be released upon request. Finalists cannot be guaranteed confidentiality. The University of Wisconsin is an equal opportunity, affirmative action employer.