HCI building

The RLC has responsibility for coordination, planning, and oversight of HCI’s research portfolio and is accountable for the design and execution of Cancer Center goals. The Council is chaired by the Cancer Center Director and includes representatives from the Director’s Cabinet, all Cancer Program Leaders, Staff Investigators, HCI-managed Shared Resource Directors, the PRMS and DSMC Chairs, and senior administrators. This group serves as the core leadership of the Cancer Center, participates actively in strategic planning for HCI research initiatives, and directs evaluation of Programs, Shared Resources, and membership. New applications for Cancer Center Membership are presented by a relevant Cancer Program Leader and put forward for an advisory vote by RLC members based on specific membership criteria; Dr. Ulrich makes final decisions on Cancer Center membership. The RLC meets monthly for two hours.

The Huntsman Cancer Institute’s Research Leadership Council is composed of the following leadership categories:


  • Cornelia Ulrich, PhD, Director, Comprehensive Cancer Center, HCI

HCI Senior Directors

  • Bradley R. Cairns, PhD, Basic Science
  • Martin McMahon, PhD, Pre-Clinical Translation
  • Michael W. Deininger, MD, PhD, Transdisciplinary Research
  • David K. Gaffney, MD, PhD, Clinical Research
  • Kathleen Mooney, PhD, Population Sciences
  • Scott Lloyd, MBA, CPA, Finance and Administration
  • David W. Wetter, PhD, MS, Community Engagement and Cancer Health Equity Research
  • Kolawole S. Okuyemi, MD, MPH, Diversity and Inclusion
  • Donald E. Ayer, PhD, Cancer Training Innovation

Program Co-Leaders

Nuclear Control of Cell Growth and Differentiation

  • Bradley R. Cairns, PhD
  • Jared P. Rutter, PhD

Cell Response and Regulation

  • Alana L. Welm, PhD
  • Sheri L. Holmen, PhD

Experimental Therapeutics

  • Neeraj Agarwal, MD
  • Martin McMahon, PhD

Cancer Control and Population Sciences

  • Kathleen Mooney, PhD, RN
  • Sean V. Tavtigian, PhD

Clinical Leaders

  • Paul J. Shami, MD, Chair, Data and Safety Monitoring
  • Wallace L. Akerley, MD, Chair, Protocol Review and Monitoring

Shared Resource Directors

  • Andrew Post, MD, PhD, Research Informatics
  • Wendy K. Kohlmann, MS, CGC, Genetic Counseling
  • David H. Lum, PhD, Preclinical Research Resource
  • Brian Dalley, PhD, and David A. Nix, PhD, High-Throughput Genomics and Bioinformatic Analysis
  • Christopher Fillmore, PhD, Biorepository and Molecular Pathology
  • Kenneth M. Boucher, PhD and Benjamin Haaland, PhD, Cancer Biostatistics
  • Ken R. Smith, PhD, Utah Population Database

Staff Investigators

  • Lisa A. Cannon-Albright, PhD
  • Jennifer A. Doherty, MS, PhD


  • Maxwell Loveless, MBA, Director, Research Administration
  • Ellen T. Wilson, PhD, Director, Research Development

HCI Centers and Partners

Center for Health Outcomes and Population Equity (HOPE)

  • David W. Wetter, PhD, MS, Director

Center for Investigational Therapeutics

  • Neeraj Agarwal, MD, Director

Center for Quantitative Cancer Imaging

  • John M. Hoffman, MD and Jeffrey T. Yap, PhD, Directors

Utah Cancer Registry

  • Carol Sweeney, PhD, Director

Center for Patient and Public Education

  • Donna M. Branson, Director

Huntsman Alliance for Postdocs (HAP)

  • Jaime Fornetti, PhD, Representative

Cancer Center Director

Cornelia Ulrich, MS, PhD

Program Leadership


Nuclear Control of Cell Growth and Differentiation

Brad Cairns, PhD
Jared Rutter, PhD


Cell Response and Regulation

Sheri Holmen, PhD
Alana Welm, PhD


Experimental Therapeutics

Neeraj Agarwal, MD
Martin McMahon, PhD


Cancer Control and Population Sciences

Kathleen Mooney, PhD
Sean V. Tavtigian, PhD