Getting the Word Out

Consider this the first of a series of messages on the mission and strategy of the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF).
The mission of PCF is to reduce the death and suffering from prostate cancer. I often wonder about what would be a good analogy for the mission. As one travels through the world of medical research organizations, patient groups, and even the general media we hear words like “war on cancer” “moonshot” “Manhattan project” to describe a problem to be conquered or a battle to be won.
All have a common thread – a bold, multi-faceted project aimed at a singular, well-defined, and easily communicable objective – place a human on the moon, develop the atomic bomb, win the war. While laudable, many of these analogies point to a far-off singular event – one that we will know is happening when we see it. On the flipside, such analogies undervalue incremental benefits. Let me ask it this way, if we focus only on a future cure, do we effectively ignore the hundreds of thousands of American men living with the disease today – over a million men worldwide?

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Dr. Charles J. Ryan, MD

Charles J. Ryan, MD is the President and Chief Executive Officer of The Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF), the world’s leading philanthropic organization dedicated to funding life-saving prostate cancer research. Charles (Chuck) J. Ryan is an internationally recognized genitourinary (GU) oncologist with expertise in the biology and treatment of advanced prostate cancer. Dr. Ryan joins the PCF from the University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, where he served as Director of the Hematology, Oncology, and Transplantation Division in the Department of Medicine. He also served as Associate Director for Clinical Research in the Masonic Cancer Center and held the B.J. Kennedy Chair in Clinical Medical Oncology. Prior to moving to the University of Minnesota, he was on the faculty of the University of California, San Francisco, where he served as Program Leader for Genitourinary Medical Oncology and held the title of Thomas Perkins Distinguished Professor in Cancer Research. Dr. Ryan earned his medical degree from the University of Wisconsin Medical School and a BA in Philosophy, magna cum laude from Marquette University. He trained at the University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, serving as Chief Resident, and at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York.


Getting the Word Out

February 01, 2022
Consider this the first of a series of messages on the mission and strategy of the Prostate Cancer Foundation (PCF).
The mission of PCF is to reduce the death and suffering from prostate cancer. I often wonder about what would be a good analogy for the mission. As one travels through the world of medical research organizations, patient groups, and even the general media we hear words like “war on cancer” “moonshot” “Manhattan project” to describe a problem to be conquered or a battle to be won.
All have a common thread – a bold, multi-faceted project aimed at a singular, well-defined, and easily communicable objective – place a human on the moon, develop the atomic bomb, win the war. While laudable, many of these analogies point to a far-off singular event – one that we will know is happening when we see it. On the flipside, such analogies undervalue incremental benefits. Let me ask it this way, if we focus only on a future cure, do we effectively ignore the hundreds of thousands of American men living with the disease today – over a million men worldwide?
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