Radiation Oncology Leadership Changes

May 8, 2009

By Dagny Stuart

Hallahan takes Washington University post

Dennis Hallahan, M.D.Dennis Hallahan, M.D., chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology at Vanderbilt, has accepted a new position as chair of Radiation Oncology at Washington University in St. Louis.

“Vanderbilt is a wonderful place, a research powerhouse, and it would take a lot to pull me away from here,” said Hallahan. “The environment here is very collegial, which fosters productive collaborations and an interdisciplinary approach to science. But the offer from Washington University was an enormous opportunity that was too good to pass up.”

Hallahan said the department at Washington Universityhas tremendous resources, with multiple endowed chairs, and the university is installing a new proton therapy center for cancer treatment.

“Dennis Hallahan has been a tremendous asset to this Medical Center, helping to develop a thriving training program for young scientists,” said Jeff Balser, M.D., Ph.D., associate vice Chancellor for Health Affairs and dean of the School of Medicine. “We recruited him to develop a high-quality independent department of Radiation Oncology, and he has exceeded our expectations for growth and clinical services for patients.”

“Dennis Hallahan has provided strong leadership,” said Jennifer Pietenpol, Ph.D., director of Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. “He has hired many outstanding faculty members that contribute significantly to both cancer research and clinical services and he has enthusiastically promoted high-impact, translational research throughout the center.”

Hallahan will maintain a laboratory at Vanderbilt throughout the summer, working with trainees, residents and fellows. He will start at Washington University in September.
Hallahan received his medical degree from Rush University in Chicago, serving an internship and residency in Internal Medicine and a residency in Radiation Oncology at the University of Chicago. He was an associate professor in the Department of Radiation and Cellular Oncology at the University of Chicago before moving to Vanderbilt in 1998. He has contributed to many Vanderbilt departments as a professor of Cancer Biology, Cell and Developmental Biology and Biomedical Engineering, in addition to serving as director of the Center for Radiation Therapy.

Hallahan also has presided over the addition of new Vanderbilt radiation oncology facilities in Clarksville and Franklin. He holds a dozen patents and has more than 40 additional patents pending worldwide in the field of radiation oncology.

“I started the program from its infancy and have watched it grow from a fledgling program to what most people rank as a top 10 radiation oncology program, based on its funding and impact on publication,” said Hallahan. “I’m very proud that we often win national competitions for our trainees and we have a great deal of visibility at national meetings.

“What we want to do is make an impact on health care, and the way to do that is to bring new methods to treat cancer into clinical trials and to teach young scientists and physicians how to do the same thing.”

Malcolm named interim chair

Malcolm Arnold. M.D.Arnold Malcolm, M.D., will become interim chair of the Department of Radiation Oncology, effective immediately.

Malcolm currently serves as associate professor of Radiation Oncology and medical director of the Radiation Oncology Program.

“Dr. Malcolm has a wealth of experience in all aspects of Radiation Oncology and will provide steady and seasoned leadership to the department during this transition,” said Jeffrey Balser, M.D., Ph.D., associate vice chancellor for Health Affairs and dean of the School of Medicine.

Malcolm received his medical degree from Meharry Medical College. After completing his residency training at Harvard Medical School, he joined the faculty at Harvard and was also an investigator in the joint Harvard-M.I.T. Health Sciences and Technology Program. He also earned a Masters of Business Administration from the University of California at Irvine.

Malcolm came to Vanderbilt in 1981 to lead the Radiation Oncology Clinical Program. While at Vanderbilt he received funding from the National Institutes of Health and directed the residency program.

In 1987, Malcolm relocated to Southern California, where he practiced Radiation Oncology and was a faculty member at the University of Southern California and UCLA. He spent 18 years as co-owner of one of the largest Radiation Oncology groups in the country and served as medical director at four hospitals and as cancer center director at another hospital.

Four years ago, he returned to Vanderbilt and was appointed medical director of the Vanderbilt Center for Radiation Oncology and chair of the VUMC Radiation Safety Committee.

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