Valerie W. Rusch, MD, FACS, was elected Chair of the Board of Regents of the American College of Surgeons (ACS) during the College’s Annual Clinical Congress, held October 4–8 in Chicago.
In her role as Chair of the Board of Regents, Dr. Rusch will work closely with the ACS Executive Director and will chair the Regents’ Finance and Executive Committees. The College’s 23-member Board of Regents formulates policy and is ultimately responsible for managing the affairs of the College.
Dr. Rusch is the Vice Chair of Clinical Research and Attending Surgeon in Thoracic Service in the Department of Surgery, as well as Miner Family Chair in Intrathoracic Cancers at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She is also Professor of Surgery at Weill Cornell Medical College.
Leader in Thoracic Surgery
As a thoracic surgeon, Dr. Rusch specializes in the diagnosis and treatment of patients with cancers of the lungs, trachea, bronchi, esophagus, mediastinum, chest wall, and pleura (malignant pleural mesothelioma). She was among the first women in the country to be board certified in thoracic surgery.
Dr. Rusch has been a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons (FACS) since 1986 and served a leadership role on several prominent ACS Committees.
Dr. Rusch has been a leader in national clinical trials for the treatment of thoracic malignancies, and in 2007, received the Thoracic Surgery Foundation for Research and Education Socrates Award. In 2012, the Association of Women Surgeons awarded her The Nina Starr Braunwald Award, for lifetime contributions to the advancement of women in surgery. She has held 25 visiting professorships and lectureships and given nearly 300 major lectures on thoracic cancers at medical conferences around the world. Dr. Rusch has also been Chair of the American Board of Thoracic Surgery, Chair of the Lung and Esophagus Task Force of the American Joint Commission on Cancer, and is currently Chair of the Mesothelioma Subcommittee of the International Association for the Study of Lung Cancer Staging Committee.
Dr. Rusch received her medical degree from the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and completed surgical residency training in general surgery and thoracic surgery at the University of Washington, Seattle, followed by a fellowship at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. ■