Board of Directors

Collage of the Board of Directors in action. Photos are framed by white boarders

The IASLC’s multidisciplinary board brings a wealth of clinical and scientific thoracic oncology expertise, a close familiarity with institutional leadership and tremendous passion for ongoing improvements to care of patients with lung cancer. 

Board Officers 2021-2023

Image
Heather Wakelee

Heather Wakelee

President

United States

Joining the Board of Directors in 2015, Dr. Heather Wakelee is a longtime IASLC member and the current President. She has served as Chair of the Communications Committee and has worked for more than a decade on various program committees for the World Conference on Lung Cancer.

Dr. Wakelee is a Professor of Medicine in the Division of Oncology at Stanford University and is the faculty director of the Stanford Cancer Clinical Trials Office. She has authored or co-authored over 200 articles on lung cancer and other thoracic malignancies, including thymic malignancies, and is involved in dozens of clinical trials related to lung cancer therapy and diagnostics.

Her research focuses on specific lung cancer subtypes defined by mutations. She is also involved in trials of adjuvant therapy, immunotherapy and anti-angiogenesis agents in addition to collaborations with colleagues focused on biomarkers and population science research.

A graduate of Princeton University and Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Dr. Wakelee completed her post-graduate training at Stanford University.

Image
Tetsuya Mitsudomi

Tetsuya Mitsudomi

Past-President

Japan

Dr. Tetsuya Mitsudomi joined the Board of Directors of IASLC in 2011 and has served as its board president since 2019. IASLC awarded Dr. Mitsudomi its Mary J. Matthews Pathology/Translational Research Award in 2013 for a lifetime achievement in pathology and translational research of thoracic malignancies.

Dr. Mitsudomi has served as a professor in the Division of Thoracic Surgery at Kindai University Faculty of Medicine in Osaka, Japan since 2012. Prior to his current role, Dr. Mitsudomi worked as Chief of the Department of Thoracic Surgery at Aichi Cancer Center for 16 years after he served as an associate professor and vice director of the Kyushu University Hospital. His research focuses on the surgical treatment of lung cancer and individualized treatment of lung cancer based on cancer genotypes such as EGFR mutations and ALK translocations. He has published more than 400 papers that have been featured in international peer-reviewed journals.

Dr. Mitsudomi earned his medical degree and his Ph.D. at Kyushu University Faculty of Medicine in Fukuoka, Japan. He completed his residency in surgery at Kyushu University Hospital and was a visiting fellow at the National Cancer Institute-Navy Medical Oncology Branch in Bethesda, Maryland from 1989 to 1991.

Image
Paul Van Schil

Paul Van Schil

President-Elect

Belgium

Dr. Paul Van Schil joined the IASLC Board of Directors in 2017 and has served as Chair of its Staging and Prognostic Factors Committee since 2017. He is now the current president-elect for the IASLC. 

Dr. Van Schil is a professor of thoracic and vascular surgery at the Faculty of Medicine, member of the Antwerp Surgical Training and Research Center (ASTARC) and consultant at the Department of Thoracic and Vascular Surgery of the Antwerp University Hospital.
His research focuses on thoracic and vascular surgery with an emphasis on lung cancer staging and therapy, lung metastases and mesothelioma. Dr. Van Schil has authored or co-authored nearly 250 articles and 44 book chapters. Dr. Van Schil graduated from medical school in 1982 at the Antwerp University in Belgium. After completing his training in general surgery, he became a fellow in the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the Antonius Hospital, Nieuwegein, the Netherlands.

Image
Andrea Bezjak

Andrea Bezjak

Secretary

Canada

Dr. Andrea Bezjak joined the IASLC Board of Directors in 2019. She has previously served on both the Advanced Radiation Technology and Bylaws Committees and acted as co-president of the 2018 WCLC in Toronto. Since 2011, she has also helped steward the Journal of Thoracic Oncology as an associate editor.

Dr. Bezjak is a University of Toronto Professor in the Departments of Radiation Oncology and Health Policy, Management and Evaluation, and a Princess Margaret Cancer Centre/University Health Network staff radiation oncologist. She has held a succession of leadership positions in the Radiation Medicine Program and the Lung Cancer Site group, helping create a program of high precision radiotherapy in lung cancer by utilizing cutting-edge technology.

Throughout her career, Dr Bezjak has authored and co-authored more than 200 peer-reviewed articles and has been a principal investigator of several multi-center clinical trials in lung cancer. Her research is in image-guided and stereotactic radiotherapy for lung cancer, palliative radiation, quality of life and symptom assessment. Her clinical practice is focused on lung cancer, thymomas and palliative radiotherapy. She is also an educator and is the current director of the radiation oncology residency training program at the University of Toronto.

Image
Erik Thunnissen

Erik Thunnissen

Treasurer

Netherlands

A long-standing member of IASLC, Dr. Erik Thunnissen joined the Board of Directors in 2019. Dr. Thunnissen has served on the IASLC Pathology Committee, where he led reproducibility studies for diagnostic pathology, relevant for the World Health Organization (WHO) classification of lung cancer.

Currently, Dr. Thunnissen is a research pathologist in the Department of Pathology at Amsterdam University Medical Center (location VUmc) in the Netherlands. Prior to this role, he served as a consulting pathologist at both VUmc, at Maastricht University Hospital and at Canisius Wilhelmina Gasthuis, Nijmegen. He was responsible for pulmonary molecular External Quality Assessment (EQA) programs initially in the Netherlands, subsequently for European Society of Pathology and now supports UKNEQAS ICC IHC {EQA organization in London, UK}.

Dr. Thunnissen has authored many peer-reviewed articles and book chapters on lung cancer and guided many students through Ph.D. thesis related to lung cancer. He earned his degree in Medicine from the VUmc, Amsterdam (1981), in Pathology at the Universiteit van Amsterdam (1986)and a PhD. in Medicine at VUmc, Amsterdam (1987).

Image
Kristin Richeimer

Kristin Richeimer

Interim CEO

United States

A Certified Association Executive (CAE) with nearly 20 years of experience in non-profit management, as the interim CEO Kristin is responsible for areas of finance, operations, governance and staff management. The interim CEO serves “Ex Officio” as a non-voting member on the IASLC Board of Directors and Executive Committee.  Kristin will also continue her role in the leadership of the Member Experience team. Her responsibilities include strategy and management related to membership, conferences, the IASLC Journals, education, and programs. The Member Experience team focuses on increasing the IASLC's value and engagement with members and conference attendees around the world and ensures the successful delivery of high-quality information and educational programs in thoracic oncology. A key component of Kristin’s role is to develop and maintain strategic relationships with domestic and international society partners in support of the mission of the IASLC, with an emphasis on expanding the association’s multi-disciplinary and global diversity, profile and presence. Kristin joined IASLC in 2010. Kristin speaks English, German and French and also enjoys learning and practicing new languages.

IASLC Board: 2021-2023

Image
Dr. Joachim Aerts

Joachim Aerts

Board Member

Netherlands

Dr. Joachim Aerts is a board certified pulmonologist with special interest in thoracic oncology. He began his training as a pulmonologist in 1997 and became a board certified pulmonologist in 2002.  He subsequently worked in two teaching hospitals, during which he was appointed at the Erasmus University Rotterdam to organize and supervise the comprehensive cancer network in the southwest of The Netherlands, and the basic, translational and clinical research in oncology.  He was appointed as professor of thoracic oncology in 2014 at Erasmus University Rotterdam. In 2018 he became head of the department of respiratory medicine at the Erasmus University Medical Centre (150 employees) and recently division chair of the department of respiratory medicine, cardiology and thoracic surgery. 

During his professional career, Dr. Aerts has been heavily involved in many research projects and has initiated different basic, translational and clinical studies, leading to over 180 peer reviewed publications. He has supervised over 20 PhD students.  During his fellowship in 1997 he developed a novel cellular immunotherapy that was brought from bench to bedside.  This finding was valorized and patented and is now in development in various clinical (registration) trials.  
Dr. Aerts is active in major scientific societies, both national and international, the IASLC, ASCO, ERS, and ATS, and is a frequently invited as speaker and member of organizing committees. 
On the society level, he is working to eradicate thoracic oncological diseases with a strong focus on abandoning asbestos from the environment. 

Image
Carlos Gil Moreira Ferreira

Carlos Gil Moreira Ferreira

Board Member

Brazil

Dr. Carlos Gil Ferreira completed his training in Medical Oncology at the National Cancer Institute (INCA) in Rio de Janeiro in 1997, and his PhD in Experimental Oncology at the VUMC in Amsterdam in 2001 (under the supervision of Dr. Giuseppe Giaccone). 

His Lab at INCA pioneered some of the first local independent phase I, II and III trials, and biomarker validation studies in Brazil. Dr. Ferreira has published over 150 peer reviewed articles and book chapters.  One particular focus of his work has been the improvement of access to molecular testing in Brazil. Due to these efforts to broaden access to precision medicine, Dr. Ferreira received the Partners in Progress Award from ASCO in 2020.   

Dr. Ferreira’s group has developed multidisciplinary care for lung cancer, as well as improved the awareness of lung cancer.  He was awarded the Latin America Cancer Care Team Winner in 2017 and 2019 by the IASLC. 

Dr. Ferreira is an active member of the IASLC since 2003 and has served on the IASLC Fellowship Committee since 2013 (co-chair 2015-2017) and as a member of the IASLC Bylaws Committee.  He served as a member of the AACR International Affairs Committee between 2015-2018. 

From March 2018, Dr. Ferreira was appointed as President of the Oncoclinicas Institute and Chief Medical Officer of Oncoclinicas Group in Brazil. The main goal of his current work is continuous medical education in oncology and mentorship of young Brazilian oncologists. 

Image
Jhanelle Gray

Jhanelle Gray

Board Member

United States

Jhanelle E. Gray, M.D. is the Department Chair, Program Leader and a Senior Member for Thoracic Oncology at the Moffitt Cancer Center (MCC), co-Leader of the Cancer Center Support Grant Molecular Medicine Program and Professor in the Department of Oncologic Sciences at the University of South Florida Morsani College of Medicine. 

A renowned Thoracic medical oncologist and clinical investigator, Dr. Gray is actively involved and leads numerous clinical research trials that investigate novel immunotherapeutic and targeted therapy drug combinations for lung cancer which have greatly influenced standard of care treatment. Her research has generated over 80 publications in scholarly, peer-reviewed journals, including original manuscripts and reviews. A leader in NCI cooperative group trials and Chair of the IASLC Membership Committee, Dr. Gray received her Bachelor of Science from the University of Florida, Medical Degree from Cornell University Medical College, and completed her internship and residency in Internal Medicine at The New York Presbyterian Hospital - Cornell. Following, she completed her Hematology/Medical Oncology Fellowship at Moffitt Cancer Center. 

Dr. Gray is actively involved as a member of the MCC Scientific Leadership Council and Clinical Research Action Committee. Globally she is the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO) 2022 Meeting Education Program Chair-elect while also serving as a member of the ASCO Lung Scientific Program Committee, IASLC Women in Thoracic Oncology Working Group and Southwest Oncology Group (SWOG) Lung Working Group. 

Image
Roy Herbst

Roy Herbst

Board Member

United States

Dr. Roy Herbst joined the Board of Directors of IASLC in 2019 and serves as a liaison to the Communications Committee. At the 17th WCLC in 2016, IASLC honored Dr. Herbst with its Paul A. Bunn, Jr. Scientific Award for his lifetime achievement in thoracic cancer research.

Dr. Herbst is the Ensign Professor of Medicine, Professor of Pharmacology, Chief of Medical Oncology, and Associate Director for Translational Research at the Yale Cancer Center (YCC) and Yale School of Medicine. He has authored more than 400 publications, including peer-reviewed abstracts, book chapters and articles in prominent journals, such as the Journal of Clinical Oncology, Clinical Cancer Research, Lancet, the New England Journal of Medicine, and Nature.

Dr. Herbst’s primary mission is the enhanced integration of clinical, laboratory and research programs to bring new treatments to patients. He has led the phase I development and successful registration of several new generation targeted and immunogenic agents for the treatment of advanced non-small cell lung cancer. He is the principal investigator of the NCI Lung Cancer Master Protocol (Lung-MAP) and the NCI-funded Yale Specialized Program of Research Excellence (SPORE) in Lung Cancer.

After earning a B.S. and M.S. degree from Yale University, Dr. Herbst earned his M.D. at Cornell University Medical College and his Ph.D. at The Rockefeller University. Dr. Herbst also completed a M.S. degree at Harvard University.

Image
Young Tae Kim

Young Tae Kim

Board Member

South Korea

Dr. Kim graduated from Seoul National University College of Medicine and trained at Seoul National University Hospital Cardiovascular Surgical Residency Program and took the Advanced General Thoracic Surgical Fellowship Program at the Mayo Clinic, USA.  After military service, he joined the Department of Thoracic Surgery at Seoul National University Hospital as a faculty member.  

Dr. Kim is an active member of the IASLC, the American Association for Thoracic Surgery (AATS), the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS), and other international and domestic academic societies.  

Clinically, his main interest is lung cancer surgery.  Dr. Kim is one of the leading members of minimally invasive surgery and served as a board of directors for the International Society for Minimally Invasive Cardiothoracic Surgery (ISMICS).  

Academically, he has been conducting lung cancer genomic research. His group discovered KIF5B-RET fusion mutation in the lung adenocarcinoma for the first time in the world. After that, using whole-genome sequencing, his group found the genomic mechanism of fusion gene formation and published it in Cell.  Dr. Kim’s team has conducted various research solving the unmet needs of lung cancer genomics and leads the development of lung cancer panel tests in his institution. They established a lung alveolar organoid model to test SARS-CoV-2 infection, published in Cell Stem Cell.  

As the Chairman of KALC (Korean Association for Lung Cancer), Dr. Kim believes that international collaboration is critical to achieving the goal of conquering lung cancer, and he is encouraging the active participation of KALC members in the IASLC. 

Image
Morten Quist

Morten Quist

Board Member

Denmark

Dr. Quist is an associate professor at the Copenhagen University and a Physiotherapist clinician-researcher with 20 years expertise in exercise for patients with cancer at the University Hospital of Copenhagen (Rigshospitalet). He is the co-founder of the “body and Cancer” and founder of the EXHALE program.  He received a PhD from The University of Copenhagen in 2015 on the topic of Exercise and Advanced Stage Lung Cancer.  Dr. Quist’s research area is exercise and lung cancer in all stages (early and advance) and in different treatment modalities (diagnostic, surgery, chemotherapy, radiotherapy, and immunotherapy). His focus is to prepare patients for treatment, optimizing functional capacity, and maintaining or improving quality of life.

Dr. Quist served on the board of directors of the Danish Lung Cancer Group in 2017 and was responsible for developing guidelines for rehabilitation in lung cancer in Denmark. He has been a member of the IASLC Nurses and Allied Health Professionals Committee since 2017.   

In addition to research, Dr. Quist co-founded and co-created two exercise communities in Denmark (Proof of Life and PACT) for cancer survivors and patients with cancer. Proof of life is an exercise community for young cancer survivors and PACT (physical activity after cancer treatment) is an exercise community for cancer patients. He received the Danish Cancer Society honor award in 2015 for his voluntary work to keep patients with cancer active, and in 2017 received the IASLC Nursing and Allied Health Lectureship Award.

Image
Dr. Lecia Sequist

Lecia Sequist

Board Member

United States

Dr. Sequist is originally from Michigan and studied chemistry at Cornell University. She received her MD from Harvard Medical School and trained in internal medicine at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and in hematology/oncology at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, where she also received an MPH from the Harvard School of Public Health. She joined the faculty at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center in 2005 and has an active clinical and translational research career, as well as a busy practice caring for patients with lung cancer. She is currently the Landry Family Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and the Director of the Center for Innovation in Early Cancer Detection at Massachusetts General Hospital. She has held grants from the NIH, the DOD, and many private foundations. Dr. Sequist’s research focuses on studying targeted therapeutics for lung cancer and novel technologies to detect cancer earlier. In her free time, she likes to spend time with her husband, two sons, and her dog, read and travel. 

Image
Ming Sound Tsao

Ming-Sound Tsao

Board Member

Canada

Dr. Tsao is a Consultant Pathologist, Senior Scientist at the Princess Margaret Cancer Centre. He is Professor of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology, and Professor of Medical Biophysics at the University of Toronto. His research focuses on understanding the genomic and molecular abnormalities in lung cancers to improve the accuracy of diagnosis and treatment. Dr. Tsao has made seminal contributions to the molecular characterization of lung cancer. His laboratory was one of the first to define molecular markers for patient selection towards treatment with targeted anti-cancer drugs, and defined gene signatures for outcome prediction of non-small-cell lung cancer patients. More recently, His laboratory has pioneered the establishment and characterization of patient-derived tumor models for lung cancer.  Dr. Tsao is Chair of the Correlative Science and Tumor Biology Committee of the Canadian Cancer Clinical Trials Group (CCTG), member and past Chair of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer (IASLC) Pathology Committee, the IASLC Staging & Prognostic Factor Committee, and a Standing Member of the Editorial Board for the WHO Books on Classification of Tumours 5th edition. He was an Associate Editor for the Journal of Thoracic Oncology and Editorial Board member of the Journal of Clinical Oncology. Dr. Tsao received the 2011 Canadian Cancer Society O. Harold Warwick Award, the 2016 IASLC Mary Matthew Pathology Award, and CCTG 2017 Dr. Joseph Pater Founder's Award for Excellence in Clinical Trials Research. In 2020, Dr. Tsao was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada. 

Image
Paula Ugalde

Paula Ugalde

Board Member

United States

Dr. Paula Ugalde graduated in 1995 and by 2000 completed training in thoracic surgery in Brazil. She did her postdoctoral research and obtained a master’s degree in 2004 when she became an assistant professor at the Federal University of Bahia Medical School. For the next 3-years, Dr. Ugalde completed a fellowship in Thoracic Surgery at Laval University in Quebec, Canada and in 2007-2008 a Thoracic Surgery Fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. In 2013, she was recruited back to Quebec and began as an associate professor at Laval University. She was soon named director of the Thoracic Oncology research program. 

Dr. Ugalde established herself as a thoracic surgeon dedicated to research with an extensive record of publications including a body of work on thoracic surgery using innovative approaches for lung cancer. Dr. Ugalde oversaw the creation of the lung cancer database at Laval University, and the university became the largest contributor in the world of cases to the IASLC database. She was awarded the IASLC Clifton F. Mountain Lectureship Award in 2019 and appointed Chair of the Database Committee of SPFC of the IASLC. In 2019, she was accepted as a member of the AATS. She has performed peer-review for the society’s journals as well as for other journals including the EJCTS and given lectures at AATS symposia and worldwide. Additionally, she introduced minimally invasive thoracic surgery in Brazil and Latin America and pursues this mission as co-chair of International Affairs for the Women in Thoracic Surgery society. 

Image
Caicun Zhou

Caicun Zhou

Board Member

China

Professor Caicun Zhou joined the IASLC Board of Directors in 2019, serving on the association’s Tobacco Control and Cessation Committee and Education Committee from 2010-2014.

With more than 20 years of experience in clinical oncology, Professor Zhou has focused his research on early detection, molecular targeted therapy, anti-angiogenesis therapy and immunotherapy in lung cancer. Since 1998, he has served as Chief Physician and Director of the Department of Medical Oncology at Tongji University in Shanghai Pulmonary Hospital. Prior to his work at Shanghai Pulmonary Hospital, he served as Associate Director at Affiliated Hospital of Bengbu Medical College.

Professor Zhou has published over 200 articles in international peer reviewed journals, including the Lancet Oncology, Lancet Respiratory Medicine, Journal of Clinical Oncology and Annals of Oncology, and he has written three books on lung cancer. In 2002, he worked as a visiting scientist at the MD Anderson Cancer Center. He studied medicine at NanTong Medical College, earned his Ph.D. at China Medical University and served as a fellow at Tokyo National Chest Hospital.

Collage of the Board of Directors in action. Photos are framed by white boarders

COI for Board of Directors

On an annual basis, all members of the IASLC Board of Directors must affirm their understanding of and agreement to comply with IASLC policies, standards, and instructions including, but not limited to, the items detailed below.

BOD_Committees

Committees

One of the unique benefits of an IASLC membership is the opportunity to serve on an IASLC committee in a volunteer capacity. 

BOD_Staff

Our Staff

The staff of the IASLC is united in a shared passion to conquer lung cancer by serving its members worldwide.