About the NCI Council of Research Advocates

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Group of people around a table at an NCI meeting of cancer research advocates

Cancer research advocates are essential partners in NCI's effort to improve the lives of all those affected by cancer.

Credit: National Cancer Institute

The NCI Council of Research Advocates (NCRA), previously known as the Director’s Consumer Liaison Group (DCLG), is the only federal advisory committee comprised of advocate leaders at NCI. NCRA members are chosen for their expert knowledge of issues of importance to the cancer research community.

The NCRA focuses on matters that facilitate research and often identifies and responds to challenges facing the Institute at the request of NCI leadership. In addition, NCRA members bring their unique skills and perspectives by identifying new approaches, promoting innovation, recognizing unforeseen risks or barriers, and identifying unintended consequences that could result from NCI decisions. The NCRA focuses on enhancing community input, optimizing community outreach, and promoting strong collaborations to improve research outcomes.

Information on past NCRA/DCLG meetings, including agendas and summaries, can be found through the NCI Division of Extramural Activities.

Upcoming Meetings


David Arons
Mr. David Arons
Chief Executive Officer
National Brain Tumor Society
Newton, MA


Greg Aune, M.D., Ph.D.
Dr. Greg Aune
Assistant Professor of Pediatrics
University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio
San Antonio, TX
Portrait of Mary Ann Battles
Ms. Mary Ann Battles
Head, Clinical Quality and Compliance
South San Francisco, CA
Empty headshot
Dr. Senaida Fernandez Poole
Program Officer, Community Initiatives and Public Health Sciences
California Breast Cancer Research Program
Oakland, CA
Portrait of Sue Friedman
Ms. Sue Friedman
Executive Director
Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered
Tampa, FL
Empty headshot
Ms. Shelley Fuld Nasso
Chief Executive Officer
National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship
Silver Spring, MD
Martha Gaines
Ms. Martha Gaines
Associate Dean for Academic Affairs and Experiential Learning
University of Wisconsin Law School
Center for Patient Partnerships
Madison, WI
Dr. June McKoy
Associate Professor of Medicine and Preventative Medicine
Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University
Chicago, IL
Portrait of Kimberly Newman Mccown
Ms. Kimberly Newman-McCown
Co-Chair, Eastern Area Program
The Links, Incorporated/The Links Foundation, Incorporated  
Philadelphia, PA
Ms. Heather Ortner
Chief Executive Officer
Dr. Susan Love Research Foundation
Encino, CA
Portrait of Roberto Vargas
Mr. Roberto Vargas
Navigator, Community Engagement and Health Policy Program
Clinical & Translational Science Institute, University of California, San Francisco
San Francisco, CA