Biographies

Angel Arnaout

Professor of Surgery at the University of Ottawa, and Surgical Oncologist at the Ottawa Hospital

Dr. Arnaout is a Surgical Oncologist at the Ottawa Hospital, Full Professor of Surgery at the University of Ottawa, former Regional Director of Breast Care Quality in Eastern Ontario, Canada and Scientist at the Ottawa Hospital Research Institute. She is the Co-Lead of the new Window of Opportunity Clinical Trial Platform at Ontario Institute of Cancer Research and a member of the National Cancer Institute BOLD task force of the Breast Steering Committee. As the Regional Director of Breast Care Quality, she oversaw the quality of breast cancer care for 13 regional hospitals. She was also the Expert Lead of Knowledge Mobilisation and Physician Practice Change at the Cancer Partnership Against Cancer.

Currently she sits as an Executive Member of the Cancer Care Ontario Breast Cancer Advisory Board, which she helps set provincial and national standards for breast care. She is fortunate to be the recipient of the Commonwealth Harkness Health Policy Fellowship Award, Physician Services Institute Graham Farquharsen Knowledge Translation Award, Federation of Medical Women of Canada Enid Johnson MacLeod Award, Cancer Care Ontario Human Touch Award, and Order of Ottawa for her dedication to breast care and women’s health in Canada.

Aleix Prat

Professor University of Barcelona, and Head of Medical Oncology Department at Hospital Clinic of Barcelona, and Head of Translational Genomics & Targeted Therapeutics in Solid Tumours Group, August Pi i Sunyer Biomedical Research Institute (IDIBAPS)

(speaking via livestream)

Dr Aleix Prat is president of the Governing Board, and previously coordinator of the Scientific Board, of the Spanish Breast Cancer Cooperative Research Group (SOLTI) that performs clinical trials of excellence in oncology. In 2018, he joined the Executive Board of The Breast International Group (BIG), an international non-profit organization that includes more than 56 cooperative groups from around the world, more than 10,000 experts and links to more than 3,000 hospitals.

Dr Prat is recognised worldwide as a leading research scientist in the field of breast cancer genomics and biomarker development, an interest that gew out of his fellowship after completing a Masters of Molecular Oncology at the Spanish National Cancer Research Centre, CNIO (Madrid, 2008). During his post-doctoral work at Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center (University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, USA) in the laboratory of Prof. Charles M. Perou, Dr Prat discovered and characterised Claudin-low a new molecular subtype of breast cancer (Prat et al. Breast Cancer Research 2010). He participated in The Cancer Genome Atlas breast cancer project (Nature 2012), the most important molecular characterization study ever performed in breast cancer. Since 2007, he has actively taken part in a total of 219 publications (46 as 1st author and 35 as senior author).

Philip Poortmans

Marie Curie Professor, Paris Science & Lettres University
Radiation oncologist, Iridium Netwerk

(speaking via livestream)

Philip Poortmans completed his medical studies at the University of Antwerp. From 1991, he worked as a radiation oncologist in Tilburg, The Netherlands, for 23 years. More recently, he has been heavily involved in hospital management and international organisations, including as head of the radiation oncology department of Radboud university medical centre in Nijmegen (2014-2017), and head of the radiation oncology department of Institut Curie, Paris - St. Cloud - Orsay, France (2017-2019). Since November 2017, he has been Marie Curie Professor of the Paris Science & Lettres University & Institut Curie. He is currently a radiation oncologist at Iridium Netwerk, part-time medical advisor for Sordina IORT Technologies and, since October 2020, associate professor at the University of Antwerp, Belgium.

Dr Poortmans is especially interested in breast cancer, quality assurance in clinical trials, malignant lymphoma and rare tumours. As a Dutch-speaking Belgian, at the crossroads of Europe’s north and south, he believes his geographically privileged position has enabled him to work and evolve as a bridge builder within and outside the radiation oncology community in Europe and abroad.

He is an editorial committee member for several guidelines for breast cancer (EUSOMA; ESTRO; ESMO; St Gallen) and for cancer and pregnancy (ESGO / INCIP; ESMO; AKZ (Adviesgroep Kanker en Zwangerschap); ABCIP). He co-chairs ECCO’s Quality Cancer Care Network and has a coordinating role for the "Essential requirements for quality cancer care". From 2014-2016 he served as president of the European Society for Radiotherapy & Oncology (ESTRO). In 2016-2017, he chaired the “Oncopolicy” committee of ECCO, then served as president of ECCO, 2018-2019.

Christobel Saunders

Professor, Chair of Surgery and Head of Department of Surgery at the University of Melbourne, and consultant surgeon at Royal Melbourne Hospital and the Peter MacCallum Cancer Institute

Christobel Saunders is internationally recognised as one of Australia’s most prominent research-orientated cancer surgeons. She has substantially contributed to breast cancer research including clinical trials of new treatments, psychosocial, translational and health services research. In recognition of her sustained career excellence and innovation, Christobel has been publicly acknowledged through numerous awards and honours including Order of Australia 2018, the Uccio Querci della Rovere Award (2018), WA Women’s Hall of Fame Inductee (2018), WA Scientist of the Year (2017) and Cancer Council WA career Achievement Award (2021). She has performed research for >30 years evaluating the efficacy and utility of therapy for early breast cancer.

In the past five years, Christobel has published over 200 peer-reviewed journal articles (two in The Lancet), six letters to the editor/editorials, two research reports, two book chapters and one book. She sits on the boards of a number of health and research organisations including as Vice-President for All.can International and on the boards of All.can Australia, Breast Cancer Trials, the Australian Centre for Value Based Health Care and PathWest. Christobel is closely involved in strategic planning and management of health and cancer services in Australia including being on the Medicare Review Advisory Committee, past President of the Cancer Council WA and Breast Surgical Society of ANZ, and past Advisory Council member of Cancer Australia. She was Inaugural Chair of the state Health Service Provider, PathWest Laboratory Medicine.

Fran Boyle

Professor of Medical Oncology, University of Sydney and Medical Oncologist, Mater Hospital, Sydney

Fran Boyle is a Medical Oncologist at North Sydney’s Mater Hospital, where she is Director of the Patricia Ritchie Centre for Cancer Care and Research, and Professor of Medical Oncology at the University of Sydney. She is a member of the Scientific Advisory committees of BCT and IBCSG and has been involved in all facets of clinical trial research in breast cancer.

Shanu Modi

Professor of Medicine in the Department of Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College, New York, and Section Head, HER2 Breast Cancer Program, and Medical Oncologist at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center

(speaking via livestream)

Dr Modi received her medical degree from the University of Alberta in Canada, where she also completed a residency in internal medicine. She undertook subspecialty training in medical oncology at the Cross Cancer Institute and subsequently completed a 4-year fellowship in breast cancer research at MSKCC. She has been a full-time faculty member on the Breast Medicine Service at MSKCC since 2005.

She has had a clinical research career in the development of HER2 targeted therapies and is currently the Section Head for HER2 Breast Cancer Program for the Breast Medicine Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. She is a member of the Expert Committee to establish Guidelines for Patients with Advanced HER2+ Breast Cancer, where she serves on the Breast Cancer Consensus Panel, and a member of the Scientific Committee for ESMO as part of the metastatic breast cancer track responsible for abstract selection.

Dr Modi was chair and member of the Scientific Program Committee for HER2 Positive Breast Cancer from 2013-2016 and a member of the grant selection committee for ASCO from 2013 to 2015. She received the Conquer Cancer Foundation Advanced Clinical Research Award in 2009 for her work in Heat Shock Protein Inhibition, and held the Patricia and James Cayne Chair for Junior Faculty at MSKCC from 2009-2012.

Rebecca Dent

Chairman of the Division of Medical Oncology and Senior Consultant at the National Cancer Center Singapore

(speaking via livestream)

Dr Dent received her medical degree from McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada, and her graduate degree in clinical epidemiology and biostatistics from the University of Toronto, Canada. She obtained her internal medicine and medical oncology training at the University of Toronto, Canada (Princess Margaret Hospital and the Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Cancer). Prior to moving to Singapore in 2011, Dr Dent was a consultant and Head of Breast Cancer Clinical Trials at the Sunnybrook Odette Cancer Center. Dr. Dent’s primary research interest is in the field of breast cancer and she is the principal investigator for multiple local, regional and international clinical trials for the treatment breast cancer. She serves as the chair or co-chair of several scientific committees at ASCO, ESMO, ESMO Asia, ASCO Breakthrough Asia and is the founder and co-chair of the Asia-Pacific Breast Cancer Summit. She is the proud recipient of the ESMO Women in Oncology Award in 2021.

Steven David

Radiation Oncologist
Peter McCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne

Dr Steven David is a radiation oncologist who graduated from the University of Western Australia before completing his specialist training at the Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre in Melbourne. Subsequently, he took up a position as a sub-specialist in breast and lung cancer at the Peter MacCallum Moorabbin campus (Monash Cancer Centre). Steven has been the lead investigator in a number of local clinical trials and has been involved in recruitment to a number of international trials. His current areas of research include development and implementation of a Deep Inspiration Breath Hold Technique to reduce radiation to the heart for patients with left sided breast cancer and the use of high dose precision radiation (SABR) for the treatment of patients with metastatic disease.

Fatima Cardoso

Director, Breast Unit, Champalimaud Clinical Center
President, ABC Global Alliance

Dr Cardoso is the Director of the Breast Unit of the Champalimaud Clinical Center (CCC) in Lisbon, Portugal. She is board certified in medical oncology and internal medicine. Dr Cardoso worked for 10 years as Assistant Professor at the Medical Oncology Clinic of the IJB and served as the scientific director of the international research network TRANSBIG for seven years. She returned to Portugal in 2010 to create the Breast Unit of the CCC, the first certified breast unit in Portugal.

Dr Cardoso has been a member of several Boards of Directors (ESMO, ECCO and EORTC). Dr Cardoso founded and is founder and President of the Advanced Breast Cancer (ABC) Global Alliance and of the ABC International Consensus Guidelines Conference. She is editor-in-chief of The Breast Journal, associate editor of the European Journal of Cancer, and has authored about 300 publications. She was awarded the prestigious Order of Santiago da Espada for Scientific Merit from the President of Portugal in 2015. She has also received the Flims Alumni Club (FAC) Lifetime Achievement Award 2011; the Prix Nice - St Paul 2017, for her work for ABC patients; the Reach to Recovery International Health Professional Award 2019, for exceptional contributions by a health professional in the field of breast cancer support; and the ABC Award 2019, in recognition of her foresight in understanding the importance of advanced breast cancer and for launching a Global Alliance against it.

Giuseppe Curigliano

Professor of Medical Oncology, University of Milano, and Chief of Advanced Drug Development Division and Consultant of the Breast Oncology Service, European Institute of Oncology

Dr Curigliano is a world expert in the field of advanced drug development in solid tumors. He founded and runs the Molecular Tumour Board at European Institute of Oncology in Milano. His research is based on the development of molecularly targeted therapies against specific genetic subtypes of solid tumors, such as those characterised by the presence of fusions. Since 2001 he has been a full-time cancer specialist at European Institute of Oncology – one of the world’s leading cancer-research institutes and the premier cancer centre in Italy and third in Europe. His division runs from 40 to 60 phase I trials each year. He is a leading clinical scientist in cancer precision medicine in EU. He has served on the Scientific Committee for the St Gallen Conference since 2011, and was the Scientific Co-Chair in St Gallen 2017, 2019, 2021, 2023. He served as the Scientific Chair of the IMPAKT ESMO meeting (Brussels 2014) and as Breast Cancer Track Chair of ESMO 2014. He served as Scientific Co-Chair of the ESMO Breast Cancer Congress in 2019, 2020 and 2021. He is an Editorial Board Member for Annals of Oncology, and serves as Co-Editor in Chief of The Breast, Co-Editor in Chief of Cancer Treatment Reviews, Associate Editor of the European Journal of Cancer, Editor of the Journal of Clinical Oncology. Dr Curigliano serves ESMO as Chair of the Guidelines Committee. He has contributed to over 595 peer-reviewed publications.

Reuben Broom

Medical Oncologist, Auckland City Hospital

Reuben is a medical oncologist specializing in breast cancer. He graduated from the University of Auckland School of Medicine in 1999 and became a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Physicians in 2006.

Between 2006 and 2008 he completed a clinical research fellowship at Princess Margaret Hospital in Toronto where he focused on breast and renal malignancies.

Reuben returned to New Zealand in 2008 and began working as a consultant at Auckland City and North Shore Hospitals. He is an active researcher in breast cancer and has been an investigator on multiple phase II and III clinical trials.

Eletha Taylor

Breast Surgical Oncologist, Auckland City Hospital

Eletha did her medical degree at the University of Auckland and completed her surgical training in New Zealand. That was followed by a fellowship in oncoplastic breast surgery at Royal Perth Hospital, under the supervision of top surgeon Christobel Saunders. Eletha also completed fellowships at the Melanoma Institute of Australia, and back here in Auckland City Hospital. She is head of the breast surgery unit at Auckland City Hospital.

Alexander Brown

Oncoplastic Breast Surgeon, Wellington Regional Hospital

Dr Alexander Brown is an oncoplastic breast and specialist general surgeon. He is also a member of Breast Surgeons of Australia and New Zealand as well as the Association of Breast Surgery in the UK and is a Fellow of the European Board of Surgery in Breast Surgery. Dr Brown has published several papers on fat grafting, breast reconstruction and patient safety.

Paul Samson

General and Breast Surgeon, Southland Hospital

Paul graduated from the University of Otago in 1999, completing his fellowship in 2009, before training in breast, endocrine and melanoma surgery at Auckland’s North Shore Hospital. He has been working as a consultant general surgeon in Invercargill, in both public and private practice, since 2010. He is a senior clinical lecturer with the University of Otago, and sits on multiple charitable and private hospital clinical committees, National Training committee for General Surgery, and is involved with the Breast Cancer Foundation National Register.

Marion Kuper

Medical oncologist, Waikato Hospital

Marion completed her oncology training in The Netherlands, at the Nijmegen University Medical Centre and qualified as a medical oncologist in 2002. She immigrated to New Zealand in 2005 and has been working as a consultant medical oncologist at Waikato DHB since. She is the clinical director of the medical oncology service at Waikato DHB. Marion is passionate about improving breast cancer care and promoting access to high quality breast cancer clinical trials in New Zealand.

Marion is a member of Scientific Advisory Committee of Breast Cancer Trials (Australia and New Zealand). She is an active member of the Academic Breast Cancer Steering Group and is an Honorary Senior Lecturer in Medicine at the University of Auckland. She has been, or is, Principal Investigator for multiple international breast cancer clinical trials. Marion is the lead clinical investigator for the ABCpro study, a service offered to women and men with symptoms related to their advanced breast cancer, aiming to improve their symptom management and quality of life.

Courtney MacDonald

Medical Oncologist, Wellington Regional Hospital

Biography coming soon

Dylan Turner

Medical Oncologist, Christchurch Hospital

Dylan is a medical oncologist working at Christchurch and St Georges hospitals. Dylan enjoys delivering evidence-based, equitable oncology care to He Tangata o Aotearoa.

Specialist areas include Breast cancer, lung cancer, upper GI cancer and GU cancers.

An interest in research has taken second priority to the delivery of clinical care in the current resource constrained setting. When time permits, he is curious to conduct a retrospective review of the benefit of adjuvant chemotherapy among patients with early lobular breast cancer.

In a broader sense, Dylan is interested in environmental and workforce sustainability. As a Libra, he has a natural inclination to keep the load on He Whare Tapa Wha well balanced.

Originally from a beach town in North Taranaki, Dylan enjoys spending his leisure time outdoors.

Sarah Barton

Medical Oncologist, Wellington Regional Hospital
Secretary, NZ Breast SIG

Sarah is a medical oncologist with a special interest in treating breast cancer. Following advanced training in Auckland and a clinical fellowship in the Royal Marsden in London, she has been working in Wellington since 2013. Sarah is currently the secretary for the NZ Breast SIG.

Gabrielle Nicholson

Manager Te Pae Haumanu, Treatment Quality and Standardisation, Te Aho o Te Kahu Cancer Control Agency

Gabrielle has successfully led a number of national initiatives for New Zealand government departments and agencies, such as the Health Quality and Safety Commission (HQSC), Ministry of Health, the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) and the Tertiary Education Commission.

Early in her career she was based in Australia in the Rural Health Team of the New South Wales branch of the Commonwealth Department of Health and Ageing. She moved to the UK from 2008-2011 where she managed some significant projects for the Department of Health in the Healthcare Associated Infection Improvement Programme, supported a London primary care trust in their move to a new method of primary care delivery – via networks of GP practices, and completed a project for the Higher Education Funding Council for Wales.

Gabrielle returned to New Zealand in 2011 and joined the Health Quality and Safety Commission in 2012, where she worked until November 2020. She then joined Te Aho o Te Kahu, the new Cancer Control Agency, in the role of manager, treatment quality and standardisation.

Sharon Shea

(Ngāti Ranginui, Ngāti Hauā, Ngāti Hine, Ngāti Hako), Board member, Te Aka Whai Ora - Māori Health Authority

Sharon is an experienced board member and has held roles on both private and public sector organisations. She often fulfils Ministerial appointed roles in health and other sectors and has held or holds governance roles in research, education, transport, start-up IT, and philanthropy.

Ms Shea is the owner/operator of a private public sector management consulting company, Shea Pita & Associates Ltd, and has extensive experience in system and service design, strategy, outcomes-based commissioning and data. Ms Shea’s experience is extensive in the health sector, and she also offers experience across education, corrections, justice, social services and broader Māori development/Whānau Ora and Whanau Resilience/Manawaroa.

Ms Shea has a BA/LLB (Auckland) and a Masters in Comparative Social Policy (Distinction) from Oxford University. Ms Shea has significant governance and leadership experience across the health, disability and community sectors. She lives in Tāmaki Makaurau/Auckland.

Sugania Reddy

Radiologist
Middlemore Hospital

General radiologist specialising in breast and women’s imaging at Mercy radiology and Middlemore hospital since 2011. Having completed postgraduate training in South Africa, Dr Reddy gained further breast imaging experience with updated techniques during visiting fellowships at University of Virginia (Charlottesville, USA) and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Centre (MSKCC) in New York.

Bruce Mann

Professor of Surgery, University of Melbourne, and Director of Breast Tumour Stream, Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre, and Director of Research, Breast Cancer Trials

Professor Bruce Mann is Professor of Surgery at The University of Melbourne, Director of the Breast Tumour Stream at the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre and is Director of Research at Breast Cancer Trials.

He has facilitated clinical and translational research into all aspects of breast cancer via the development and maintenance of extensive clinical data collection. His research interests focus on tailored screening and treatment for early breast cancer. He was PI on Australia’s first decision impact study of Oncotype Dx, PI on a validation study of the DCISionRT assay for DCIS, national PI of the POSNOC study of axillary treatment for those with positive sentinel nodes, and is an instigator and principal investigator of the PROSPECT trial.

Dale Bramley

Interim Lead for Hospital & Specialist Services, Health NZ

Biography coming soon

Session Chairs

Claire Hardie

Radiation Oncologist, Palmerston North Hospital

Dr Claire Hardie is a Radiation Oncologist at Palmerston North Hospital and Clinical Executive of Cancer Screening, Treatment and Support at MidCentral. She is the Chair of the Radiation Oncology Working Group and is currently seconded to Te Aho o Te Kahu as a Clinical Advisor. Her clinical interests are in breast cancer and lung cancer and she is a member of the Medical Advisory Committee of Breast Cancer Foundation NZ.

Peter Chin

Oncoplastic breast surgeon, Tauranga Hospital

Peter graduated from the University of Melbourne in 1994 and completed his surgical training in New Zealand before undertaking an oncoplastic breast fellowship at the Edinburgh Breast Unit. He has been the lead breast surgeon at Tauranga Hospital and the Bay of Plenty breast screening program since 2006. Peter is an executive council director of the Australasian Society for Breast Disease and is on the teaching faculty for the BreastSurgANZ oncoplastic courses. He enjoys teaching and is an honorary clinical lecturer with the University of Auckland.

David Okonji

Medical Oncologist, Wellington Regional Hospital, and Clinical Senior Lecturer at the University of Otago, School of Medicine

David is a medical oncologist practicing at Wellington Hospital, New Zealand, and also undertakes private practice in Bowen Icon Cancer Centre, Wellington. He has a special interest in breast cancer, with a particular focus on cancer care in the elderly. He is a Clinical Senior Lecturer at the University of Otago, School of Medicine and is involved in research as an investigator in clinical trials at Wellington Hospital. He is also an active member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the European Society of Medical of Oncology and the Society of Geriatric Oncology.

Maria Pearse

Consultant Radiation Oncologist, Auckland Radiation Oncology

Maria trained at the University of Otago’s Medical School and has worked as a consultant radiation oncologist at both Auckland City Hospital and Auckland Radiation Oncology. She has been a Fellow of the Australian and New Zealand College of Radiologists and has completed a Clinical Fellowship at the Toronto Sunnybrook Regional Cancer Centre in Canada.