Leading COTA into the Next Chapter of Data-Driven Precision Oncology

As the incoming president and CEO of COTA, I’m ready to take on the challenge of using real-world data to transform the way life sciences companies, clinicians, and patients work together in oncology care.
Since joining the life sciences community more than twenty years ago, I’ve been deeply passionate about using real-world data (RWD) to inform drug development, effective treatment and decisions at the patient’s point of care. RWD is the essential connective tissue of the research environment, bridging gaps between partners in life sciences and clinical care. 
Real-world data doesn’t just help us answer questions. It helps us ask the right questions for the right people at the right time, so that everyone can get the most precise, personalized care for their unique needs.
That’s why it’s been so amazing to find a home at COTA, where the incredible people around me all share this same vision and drive. As president and CEO, I’m humbled to be a part of a team with such an unparalleled wealth of knowledge, empathy, and experience.
We are mission-driven to find new ways for RWD to make an impact, including opening up more opportunities for patient participation in the discovery process.
That’s because clinical trials can change everything for cancer patients and their families. They can offer hope, support, and more time to make cherished memories with loved ones. I know this firsthand, because clinical trials had a profound effect on my own family.
After immigrating from Romania as a child, my grandfather helped to raise me in America. Soon after, he was diagnosed with advanced metastatic lung cancer and given only three months to live. At the time, we didn’t have the resources for conventional treatment. But there was a clinical trial that offered experimental care we could afford.
Instead of living for three months, he went into remission and got to spend another thirty years with his family. He got to see me grow up, graduate with advanced degrees, and launch my career as a scientist so I could help other people like him.
We were lucky to have access to this transformational clinical trial. If we hadn’t learned about the program, or if we didn’t live close enough to the trial site for regular visits, our lives would have been very different. Now, my goal is to ensure that all patients have similar opportunities, no matter what their background or resources.
I’m delighted to be leading COTA at this pivotal moment in history, when precision oncology and data science are advancing together at lightning speed. By working with partners across the healthcare continuum, we can guide cancer patients and their families down the path to clear, safe, personalized, and effective cancer care.
We have so many exciting new milestones already in our sights. It’s an honor and a privilege to be in the vanguard of the digital revolution in the life sciences. I hope you will join us on our journey as we leverage the power of RWD – and the power of the people behind the data – to bring enhanced clarity to cancer care.