The American Society of Preventive Oncology presented its 2020 and 2021 awards during the virtual Annual Meeting on Monday, March 29. Full interviews with each award winner are available on ASPO's website (


2021 ASPO Joseph F. Fraumeni, Jr., Distinguished Achievement Award Lucile Adams-Campbell, PhD, Georgetown University Medical Center Nominated by Karen Basen-Engquist, PhD

Lucile Adams-Campbell, PhD was the first African-American woman to receive a PhD in epidemiology in the United States, and in 1995 when she directed the Howard University Cancer Center she was the only African-American woman to lead any cancer institute. She is currently the Associate Director of Minority Health & Health Disparities Research, Senior Associate Dean for Community Outreach and Engagement, and Professor of Oncology at Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center at Georgetown University Medical Center. Dr. Adams-Campbell has dedicated her career to studying cancer disparities experienced by African-Americans.

“I'm most proud of the work that I've continued to do in the minority communities. I was studying minorities and disparities before it was ever popular… I've always wanted to give back to the community and the best way for me to do was to engage the community in studies… anything to get people of color to understand the importance of their contributions to science, and that's been my whole mantra my entire career,” Adams-Campbell said.


2021 Joseph Cullen Award in Tobacco Research Carolyn “Bo” Aldigé, Prevent Cancer Foundation Nominated by Bernard Levin, MD & James Mulshine, MD

Carolyn “Bo” Aldigé is Founder and CEO of the Prevent Cancer Foundation, a national nonprofit organization she started in 1985 in memory of her father, who had died of cancer 1 year earlier. Bo has unequivocally demonstrated an unyielding commitment to tobacco control efforts by enabling innovative research and spearheading public education, policy, and advocacy initiatives. In the 35 years since its inception, the Prevent Cancer Foundation has become nationally recognized as a leader in the fight against cancer through prevention and early detection. The Foundation has funded innovative research fellowships and grants aimed at limiting the use of tobacco, as well as early detection of lung cancer which have spawned or furthered the careers of promising researchers.

When asked what advice she would give to someone considering a career in the field, “you'll always have a job,” Aldigé said. “There's no shortage of research that needs to be done, particularly in the applications of research that's already been done—the whole field of electronic cigarettes and advocacy for eliminating flavored cigarettes, for educating young people about the dangers of e-cigarettes… limiting the ability of the tobacco industry to market to young people, getting people to understand the value of getting a CT scan to detect early stages of the three leading killers of Americans, and more basic research in behavior and what motivates people to change their behavior.”


2020 ASPO Joseph F. Fraumeni, Jr., Distinguished Achievement Award Jeanne Mandelblatt, MD, MPH, Georgetown University Nominated by Peter Kanetsky, PhD, MPH

Dr. Mandelblatt is a tenured Professor of Medicine and Oncology at Georgetown University. With her clinical translational training in geriatrics, health services research, and cancer epidemiology, Dr. Mandelblatt is a nationally recognized population scientist with more than three decades of continuously, multi-RO1 funded NIH collaborative research focused on cancer, policy, and aging. Dr. Mandelblatt's research focuses on screening and survivorship at the intersection of aging. She is also recognized for her leadership in advancing knowledge about the costs and effects of medical care interventions. She was a member of the original Panel on Cost-Effectiveness in Health and Medicine, and co-wrote several chapters of their landmark book of the same title. She also participated in the writing for the recent re-release of the book with the second panel.

“As a young physician I believed then, as I do now, that health inequities could only be addressed by considering biological, social, and political factors. The Montefiore RPSM trained physicians as activists and advocates. I used that training to work on the front lines in NY inner city neighborhoods as a family doctor. At that point, I hadn't yet learned about the power of research to advocate for change. After my experience working in Harlem and Elmhurst Queens and advocating for cancer screening in the NYC Public Hospital System, I recognized the burden of cancer among older women, especially older, black women… As a practicing geriatrician, my patients would tell me “why do you care about me, I'm too old…” They would relate stories of doctors discounting their symptoms or failing to offer treatment because they were “too old.” But many of my patients were very fit and engaged, with a long life expectancy. So, I turned to research advocating for indicated therapy in older patients with cancer, and personalization of care to comorbidity levels,” Mandelblatt said.


2020 Joseph Cullen Award in Tobacco Research Paul Cinciripini, PhD, University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center Nominated by Ernest Hawk, MD, MPH

Dr. Paul Ciniripini is currently a tenured Professor and Margaret & Ben Love Chair in Clinical Cancer Care in honor of Dr. Charles A. LeMaistre, at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. His academic training is in Clinical Psychology and Psychophysiology. He serves as Chair for the Department of Behavioral Science and Director of the Tobacco Treatment Program. He has over 30 years of experience conducting basic and clinical research in the area of smoking cessation and nicotine psychopharmacology. Dr. Ciniripini's major research interests include studies developing novel behavioral and pharmacologic treatments for nicotine dependence, and those that study individual differences associated with treatment outcome. In addition to community-based samples, my work has also involved populations with psychiatric and medical co-morbidities including depression, pregnancy, and cancer.

Dr. Ciniripini commented on the value of teamwork. “Coming to MD Anderson was an opportunity for me to do research in a way that I had not previously experienced or anticipated. One of the best outcomes of that was being able to form a group of tobacco researchers… We have a cadre of five or six very high level functioning faculty, trainees, and post-docs and we work together as a team… having that group to work with really accelerated [the work] for all of us.”