When we have a new staff member come on board our Lung Cancer Alliance family (LCA), we like to find out what brought them here. Our two newest staff are Jamal Bankhead, MPH and Kevin Schaeffer.
Jamal, our Data and Evaluation Manager, handles data collection and monitoring for our Screening Centers of Excellence and treatment centers. Kevin, our Development and Operations Coordinator, assisting in donor relations and development and making sure things run smoothly around the office.
Read below to find out what Jamal and Kevin are all about.
Why work in the field of lung cancer?
Jamal: I chose lung cancer because it’s a huge public health area that many need to be educated about. Being that lung cancer is the number one cause of cancer death in both men and women in the United States and worldwide, there’s a lot of work that needs to be to change this. I chose Lung Cancer Alliance because I want to be a part of an organization that’s putting in the work to help fight lung cancer.
Kevin: I have always been interested in the health care field. I started out going to school for pharmacy and always enjoyed classes like anatomy, plus my girlfriend is now a Physician Assistant so medicine is a big part of our day-to-day life. I’ve also always had a passion for non-profit work, so being able to combine those joys and work for an organization that is on the front line of incredible advancements in lung cancer support and research is just what I was looking for.
What element of the cause are you most passionate about?
Jamal: Helping to increase understanding of lung cancer through research.
Kevin: Helping the lung cancer community reach the levels of funding and research it deserves.
Were there facts about lung cancer that surprised you?
Jamal: I was surprised to learn how few people were diagnosed with the disease at an early stage.
Kevin: Like most who are uninformed about the disease, I was surprised to learn the breakdown of those affected, especially the recent upwards trend of younger patients with no connection to smoking.
What impact do you hope to have on the lung cancer community?
Jamal: I am excited to present the data that will help educate our community to make the best personalized decision in treatment and management of their disease.
Kevin: I can’t wait to see how LCA grows in the next few years and how many lives we will be able to change because of it!