Diverse Cancer Communities Working Group

Our Diverse Cancer Communities Working Group (CWG) is a three-year initiative (2017-2020) inspired by the Cancer Moonshot and the Biden Cancer Initiative. The CWG will deliver a sustainable set of solutions and innovations to optimize cancer screening, access to care, treatment and clinical trial inclusion for underserved populations and ethnic minorities in the United States.

Our Call to Action:  Spotlight existing inequities in order to identify and deliver solutions and innovations in cancer screening, referral, access to treatment, care, support and inclusive research for all.

Cancer Conditions of Focus:  Non- Small Cell Lung Cancer, Triple Negative Breast Cancer, Colorectal Cancer, Multiple Myeloma, Prostate Cancer

Our Key Deliverables:

  • We are driven by Data: Building on the NMQF Cancer Index, we are adding American College of Surgeons lung cancer data to understand prevalence and clinical contributors to disparities in Kentucky and nationwide.  
  • We will drive Community Engagement:  We will identify best practices in engaging minority and underserved community leaders and patients in treatment and research.  
  • We will increase Diversity in Cancer Research: We will document the current gaps in participation and advocate for research equity in this era of precision medicine.
  • We will promote sustainable improvement in cancer screening, referral and treatment: Using proven quality improvement and education methodology, we will promote cancer screening and referral in underserved communities, beginning with clinicians in Kentucky and expanding nationwide with additional cancers showing disparities.

Our Work Defined:

Driven by the insights and recommendations of leaders in the public and private sector, four initial sub teams are chaired by members of the working group. The Chairperson for the initiative is Jeanne M. Regnante, Senior VP, Community Education, Sustainable Healthy Communities, LLC:

Sub teams:

  • The Cancer Index – Co-Chairs: Ryan McCabe, PhD, American College of Surgeons, Gary Puckerin, PhD, NMQF
  • Diversity in Cancer Research – Chair: Coleman K. Obasaju, MD, PhD, Eli Lilly and Company
  • Community and Patient Engagement – Co- Chairs: Ellen Sonet, JD, MBA, CancerCare; Michelle Vichnin, MD, FACOG, Merck & Co., Inc.
  • Physician Education and Quality Improvement (QI) – Co-Chairs: Christopher M. Dezii, RN, MBA, CPHQ, Bristol- Myers Squibb Company; Laura Lee Hall, PhD, Sustainable Healthy Communities, LLC


AbbVie, Inc.*
American College of Surgeons
American Society of Clinical Oncology
Association of Community Cancer Centers
Amgen, Inc.*
Biden Cancer Initiative
Bristol-Myers Squibb Company*
Bristol-Myers Squibb Foundation*
Celgene Corporation
Deloitte, LLP*
Eli Lilly and Company*

Genentech, Inc*
Johnson & Johnson*
Kentucky LEADS
LUNGevity Foundation
Merck & Co., Inc.*
NIH Precision Medicine: All of Us
Takeda Oncology*
Stand Up 2 Cancer
Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson
University of Kentucky Healthcare
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
*Corporate Members and Sponsors of the CWG

Click Here To View or Download the Diverse Cancer Communities Working Group Infographic.

If you are interested in becoming a member of the cancer working group, contact chairperson Jeanne M. Regnante, jregnante@shcllc.info.