2023 Fraumeni & Cullen Awards

Joseph F. Fraumeni, Jr., Distinguished Achievement Award

The Joseph F. Fraumeni, Jr., Distinguished Achievement Award is presented to an outstanding scientist in the area of preventive oncology, cancer control and/or cancer prevention. We are happy to announce the 2023 award will be presented to Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, PhD, RD during the Annual Meeting.

Wendy Demark-Wahnefried, PhD, RD is an outstanding candidate for the ASPO Joseph F. Fraumeni, Jr. Distinguished Achievement Award given her significant and long-term scientific contributions across the cancer continuum.  A nutrition scientist by training, Dr. Demark-Wahnefried began her career studying weight gain among women with breast cancer and was one of the first to document sarcopenic obesity with chemotherapy (JCO 2001).  She conducted proof-of-principal studies that promoted high-nutrient, low energy density diets combined with aerobic and resistance training to reverse adverse body composition change. Achieving success, Dr. Demark-Wahnefried then focused on interventions that were grounded in behavioral theory, home-based, scalable, and aimed at mitigating outcomes associated with accelerated aging among cancer survivors. Initially using tailored mailed print interventions with or without telephone counseling, the FRESH START and RENEW randomized controlled trials (RCT) achieved significant, reproducible, and durable improvements in dietary intake and physical activity, and functional decline in international and sizable (>500) samples of cancer survivors (JCO 2007, JAMA 2009, JCO 2012).  Partnering with Cooperative Extension, Harvest for Health, a statewide, home-based, vegetable gardening intervention delivered by master gardeners paired with 381 older cancer survivors will soon yield findings aimed to enhance health of survivors residing in rural areas. Her AMPLIFY (AiM, Plan and act on LIFestYles) web-based, diet and exercise, weight loss RCT is recruiting survivors of obesity-related cancers. Along with RCTs in the presurgical setting and measuring effects on tumor proliferation have yielded ~350 peer-reviewed articles.  She has led efforts to disseminate best practices for lifestyle behaviors among cancer survivors including several notable policy-related papers (CA Cancer J Clin 2012, 2018; Med Sci Sports Exerc, 2010; J Natl Compr Canc Netw 2020,2021; J Clin Oncol 2022). Dr. Demark-Wahnefried is devoted to service, chairing various committees including the National Cancer Policy Forum, the World Cancer Research Fund/American Institute of Cancer Research, and ASPO, where she served on several program planning committees, director-at-large, and president (2013-2015).

Joseph W. Cullen Memorial Award
The Joseph W. Cullen Memorial Award is to recognize an individuals distinguished achievement in continued national tobacco control efforts, through research, through the development of prevention and cessation programs with wide-reaching public health impact, or through public policy and advocacy initiatives. We are happy to announce the 2023 award will be presented to Vani Nath Simmons, PhD during the Annual Meeting.

Dr. Vani Simmons is a senior member of the Department of Health Outcomes and Behavior at Moffitt Cancer Center in Tampa, Florida, and Professor of Oncologic Sciences and Psychology at the University of South Florida. Dr. Simmons co-directs Moffitt’s Tobacco Research and Intervention Program, a large multi-disciplinary team focused on tobacco control research. Dr. Simmons has dedicated her career to reducing health disparities by developing and validating innovative, participant-centered smoking cessation interventions. These studies include populations at high-risk for tobacco-related disparities, yet not well-represented in tobacco research, including young adults, pregnant/postpartum women, cancer patients/survivors, Spanish-language preferring individuals, and individuals who also vape. She recently led one of the largest smoking cessation trials for cancer patients while also leading NCI’s C3I Cancer Moonshot initiative at Moffitt. Her work with cancer patients has extended to electronic cigarette use and to understanding barriers and facilitators to low-dose computed tomography as a screening tool for high-risk smokers. Additionally, Dr. Simmons demonstrated strong efficacy for one of the few Spanish-language tobacco cessation interventions in a nation-wide trial. She also co-led the first trial to demonstrate that dual users of combustible and e-cigarettes benefit from smoking cessation assistance.  Dr. Simmons has been continuously funded throughout her career by NIH and the Florida Biomedical Research Program.