Ann is a 20-year breast cancer survivor that passionately believes in the fight to eradicate breast cancer. Although much progress has been made since her diagnosis and treatment, thousands still die of breast cancer every year. Ann is the patient advocate for Department of Defense Innovator Award applications for the Nanomedicine team, because she believes that the potential for the use of nanotechnology in breast cancer is evident and exciting - in diagnosis, imaging and drug delivery. In this capacity, Ann reviews all papers and grant applications; attending coordination meetings, conferences, seminars and presentations; participates in media events and interviews; represents the team at cancer functions and spreads the word about this research; and serves on the Innovator Award Guidance Board and the Innovator Board of Clinical Advisors.
Mary Lou Smith is a Co-founder of the Research Advocacy Network. She is a two-time breast cancer survivor and serves as co-chair of the ECOG Patient Representative Committee and the Radiation Therapy Oncology Group Patient Advocate Committee and as a community member of the IRB at Rush University Medical Center. She serves on the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) Breast Cancer Screening and Treatment Guidelines Committees, the North Central Cancer Treatment Group (NCCTG) Patient Advocacy Committee, the Translational Breast Cancer Research Consortium (TBCRC) and on the Advocate Core of the Department of Defense Center of Excellence for Individualization of Therapy for Breast Cancer at Indiana University. Mary Lou is past president of Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization and has served on the Cancer Leadership Council and the National Breast Cancer Coalition's Board of Directors.
Mary Lou has worked in health care for over 20 years in both hospital administration and consulting. She was involved in the development of numerous managed care products for the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, including a Pediatric Cancer Network. Mary Lou has a Juris Doctorate with a Health Law Certification and a master's degree in Business Administration.