Robert S. DiPaolo Steps Down as Director of the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey and RBHS Vice Chancellor for Cancer Programs

Members of the Rutgers Community:

After 22 years of service, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Director, and RBHS Vice Chancellor for Cancer Programs Robert S. DiPaola, MD has announced his plans to take on a challenging new role as Dean of the College of Medicine at the University of Kentucky. It is with mixed emotions that I congratulate Bob on seizing this extraordinary leadership opportunity, and I know you join me in wishing him well.

Since coming to Rutgers (legacy UMDNJ) in 1994, Bob has made significant statewide and national contributions including leading our state’s only NCI-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center and most recently serving as Vice Chancellor for Cancer Programs and chair of the Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences Strategic Planning Steering Committee. Under Bob’s leadership, Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey has become one of the nation’s top cancer centers and one of the jewels in the crown of our University. As a strong leader, he has created many University and statewide collaborations and initiatives. He successfully integrated the Cancer Institute into Rutgers and positioned our cancer center as an important statewide hub for cancer research and patient care serving as a resource for our state.

His accomplishments in the area of translational research are underscored by grants from the NIH, Department of Defense, and private foundations, as well as his publications in prominent journals including the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, Cell, Clinical Cancer Research, and the Journal of Clinical Oncology. His research has included both laboratory and clinical studies with impact on the standards of care for the treatment of prostate cancer. He has also had multiple National leadership roles, including leadership of the Genitourinary Committee of NCI’s Eastern Cooperative Oncology Group as the National Chairman (2004–2011), launching multiple national phase II and III clinical research studies. He has been a full member of multiple NIH/NCI steering committees, and is currently a full member of the NCI IRG Subcommittee A (Parent Committee) for national cancer centers review.

Bob leaves our Cancer Center strong and ready to continue its trajectory of innovation and growth. He helped create and implement a clinical operation co-management business model managing multidisciplinary faculty under a cohesive and successful service line. Bob launched a Precision Medicine Initiative that resulted in translational activities, increased federal and private funding, and clinical partnerships, by building a strong scientific base of faculty and core resources (including systems biology, functional genomics, genomic science faculty, targeted therapeutics within a phase I trial team, bio-repository, pathology, and research pharmacy) and a molecular tumor board that has been offering patients the option of genomic sequencing and assessment by this expert team under appropriate clinical trials in real time.

Early in the New Year, we will name an interim director, empanel a search committee of distinguished faculty, administrators, and University leaders, and embark on a national search for a permanent leader for Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey.

Please join me in wishing Bob success in his new endeavor.

Brian L. Strom, MD, MPH 
Chancellor, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences 
Executive Vice President for Health Affairs