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The University of Arizona Cancer Center recently named Dr. Joann Sweasy, Ph.D. as the center’s new director the inaugural holder of the Nancy C. and Craig M. Berge Endowed Chair.

Sweasy will be responsible for setting the vision, priorities and strategies for the center and help build its reputation on a local and national scale. She will also serve as the chief advisor for cancer-related matters for the university and be responsible for maintaining the center’s status as an NCI Comprehensive Cancer Center as apart of the Cancer Center Support Grant from the National Cancer Institute. 

As an expert in DNA repair and genomic instability, Sweasy’s focus in on how DNA repair could lead to mutations that could result in human diseases, like cancer. 

Sweasy joined the center in 2019 as an associate director for basic sciences. Before that, she was associate director for basic sciences and co-leader of the Radiobiology and Radiotherapy Program at the Yale Comprehensive Cancer Center. Sweasy filled the role of interim director for nine months before officially becoming the center’s new director.