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Board of Trustees 2024-2025

Executive Committee


Nadine J. Barrett, PhD, MA, MS, FACCC
Senior Associate Dean for Community Engagement and Equity in Research
Wake Forest University School of Medicine and Atrium Health
Durham, NC

Dr. Nadine J. Barrett is Senior Associate Dean for Community Engagement and Equity in Research at Wake Forest University School of Medicine and Atrium Health. Prior to that she held senior leadership roles as CTSI Co-Director for Equity and Stakeholder Strategy.

A medical sociologist by training, Dr. Barrett is a health disparities researcher, expert equity strategist, and a nationally-recognized leader in facilitating community/stakeholder and academic partnerships to advance health equity and developing training and methods to address implicit bias and structural and systemic racism that limits diverse participation in clinical and translational research and access to quality healthcare. Her goals are to integrate diverse stakeholder engagement in the research process and quality improvement in healthcare systems, enhance enrollment and retention of underrepresented groups in research through innovative interventions such JUST ASK, a nationally recognized program adapted by ACCC and ASCO, and diversify the healthcare workforce, and advance health equity.

Prior to her aforementioned role at Duke, Dr. Barrett was the founding director of the Duke Cancer Institute’s Office of Health Equity, where for eight years she led a team to create a nationally awarded community engagement model to advance health equity, through patient navigation, nationally funded pipeline training programs for underrepresented race and ethnic groups, and authentic community partnerships to inform and drive research and quality healthcare as advisors, experts, and participants. Her leadership in both nonprofit and academia spans local, national, and international partnerships to better serve and engage historically marginalized and underserved populations.

Immediate Past President

Olalekan Ajayi, PharmD, MBA, FACCC
Chief Operating Officer
Highlands Oncology Group, PA
Fayetteville, AR

Olalekan “Lekan” Ajayi, PharmD, MBA, FACCC, is Chief Operating Officer for Highlands Oncology Group, P.A. In this role, Dr. Ajayi oversees the deployment of strategic initiatives into operational goals for all organizational service lines, including oncology. Dr. Ajayi currently serves on the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) Board of Trustees as the secretary.

Dr. Ajayi is passionate about leadership development and building high-performance teams through the application of operational excellence principles. He holds a Doctor of Pharmacy from the University of Wyoming and a Master of Business Administration from the University of Colorado Denver.


Una Hopkins, RN, FNP-BC, DNP, FACCC
Director for Research and Evidence Based Practice
Montefiore Medical Center
Bronx, NY

Una Hopkins, RN, FNP-BC, DNP, FACCC, is a registered nurse with more than 30 years of experience in oncology, 25 as a nurse practitioner. Dr. Hopkins is currently the director for research and evidence-based practice at the Montefiore Medical Center in Bronx, New York, where she is responsible for the oversight and management of nurse engagement in programs of research and evidence-based practice, academic and affiliations, nursing internet and intranet development, and presentations and publications for the department of nursing. This includes the management of selected staff and operations, academic affiliations and funded educational projects, survey preparation, specialized training initiatives, education related to promotion of nursing research and evidence-based practice, oversight of project management, and funding attainment. 

Dr. Hopkins has received numerous awards for her accomplishments in clinical and research work and since 1927, has published over 20 articles in various medical journals. She holds bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Nursing Science from the College of New Rochelle where she also studied to become a family nurse practitioner. She received her doctorate from Pace University in New York City. Dr. Hopkins serves on the Advisory Committee for the ACCC Institute for Clinical Immuno-Oncology.


Doug Flora Headshot
Douglas Flora, MD, LSSBB, FACCC
Executive Medical Director, Oncology Services
St. Elizabeth Healthcare
Edgewood, KY

Douglas Flora, MD, LSSBB, FACCC, serves as the Executive Medical Director of Oncology Services at St. Elizabeth Cancer Center and is a key player in developing a nationally recognized lung cancer screening program at St. Elizabeth Healthcare. Dr. Flora was named the Robert and Dell Ann Sathe Endowed Chair in Oncology. He serves on the Board of Directors for the American Cancer Society, the Association of Community Cancer Centers, and the Kentucky Society of Clinical Oncology.

Dr. Flora has a history of measurable success in managing all operations, including project management, policy development, staff engagement, budget planning, research, public education, and patient service. He applies Lean Six Sigma methodologies to improve patient experience and staff productivity. He is the Physician Leader instrumental in the development/launch of the Center for Precision Medicine & Genomic Health.

He was born and raised in Cincinnati, Ohio, graduating from The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 1999. Dr. Flora has been named a Cincinnati Magazine “Top Doctor” in hematology and oncology for consecutive years since 2005.


Jorge J. Garcia, PharmD, MS, MHA, MBA, FACHE, FACCC
Assistant Vice President
Baptist Health South Florida
Miami, FL

Jorge J. García, PharmD, MS, MHA, MBA, FACHE, FACCC,  serves as an assistant vice president at Baptist Health South Florida with responsibility for system-wide oncology pharmacy services primarily at the Miami Cancer Institute, the Lynn Cancer Institute, and inpatient oncology pharmacy services at several acute hospitals.

Dr. García has pioneered pharmacy charge integrity and revenue management in the health-system setting and is a thought leader and national speaker in this area, as well as in the areas of alternative payment models, biosimilars, and value-based oncology care. Dr. García leads advocacy efforts at the national level to promote evaluation of safe and effective use of biosimilars, along with stakeholder engagement to support a more just and sustainable biosimilar pharmacoeconomics model.

Dr. García obtained his Doctor of Pharmacy and MBA from Nova Southeastern University in 2010. He then transitioned to the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center to pursue an ASHP-accredited PGY-1 & PGY-2 Health-System Pharmacy Administration Residency and a Master of Science in Pharmacy Administration. He also completed an MHA from Florida Atlantic University. Dr. García is a board member at the Florida Society of Clinical Oncology (FLASCO), a recipient of the FLASCO 2018 Above and Beyond Award, and a fellow of the American College of Healthcare Executives.

Board of Trustees

J. Renea Austin-Duffin, MPA, FACCC
Vice President, Cancer Support and Outreach
Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center
Baton Rouge, LA

A native of Louisiana, J. Renea Austin-Duffin is an accomplished and proven leader in the private sector and government. She earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Business/Public Administration from Louisiana State University and a Master of Public Administration degree from Southern University.

Upon completing her Master’s degree, Renea served her state for 13 years in both the legislative and executive branches. From 1996 through 2001, Renea served in Governor Mike Foster’s administration as first, the undersecretary of the Department of Social Services, then Deputy Commissioner of Administration for Policy, and ultimately Secretary of the Department of Social Services during his second term. Renea joined the state’s largest private health insurer, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana, in November 2001 as Senior Vice President for Member and Community Relations. She also served as the Corporate Diversity Officer and President of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Louisiana Foundation.

In summer 2006 Renea put her professional career on pause and became full-time caregiver to her sister who was living with cancer. This life changing experience inspired her to seek “success with significance”. Since February 2007 she has served as the Vice-President of Cancer Support and Outreach at Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center. She is responsible for the oversight and strategic development for mission-based programs and services within a 30-parish service area to lessen the burden of cancer in the community. These programs include education, research and early detection, including the management of three mobile medical clinics. She also responsible for the Cancer Centers grants management program which has a portfolio of grants in excess of $5 million. Renea also serves as the governmental affairs liaison for the Cancer Center at local, state and federal level.

While her professional career and community service are important, she views her most challenging and rewarding role as those of wife to her husband, Morise L. Duffin, Jr., and mother to her son, Morise L. Duffin, III (Trey) who is a junior at Xavier University of Louisiana.

Jennifer Bires, MSW, LCSW, OSW-C, FACCC
Executive Director, Life with Cancer and Patient Experience
Inova Schar Cancer Institute
Fairfax, VA

Jennifer Bires, LCSW, OSW-C, CST, is an innovative leader in the field of psychosocial oncology with over 15 years of experience building patient centered, supportive care programs for patients and families impacted by cancer. In her current role at Inova Schar Cancer Institute, Jennifer leads a team of oncology behavioral health therapists, social workers, nurse navigators and oncology dieticians, ensuring that patients and those who support them have access to psychosocial care and education, at no cost to them, to help cope with cancer and its impact on their well-being. Additionally, she oversees the Arts and Healing program which utilizes the arts as a modality of healing.

Her clinical specialties include sexual health, young adults with cancer and end of life care. Jennifer is a current PhD candidate in Palliative Care at the University of Maryland, Baltimore exploring the use of psychedelics as a behavioral health treatment modality for people impacted by cancer.

She earned her master’s degree in Social Work from Washington University in Saint Louis, and her bachelor’s degree at Clemson University. She was awarded the Oncology Social Worker of the year in 2017 from the Association of Oncology Social Workers, sits on the Leadership Council for the Association of Oncology Nurse Navigators +, and Board of Trustees for the Association of Cancer Care Centers, is a member of the American Cancer Society National Navigation Round Table and is a past chair for the Board of Oncology Social Work.

JiaJoyce Conway, DNP, CRNP, AOCNP
Nurse Practitioner
Cancer Care Associates of York
York, PA

Dr. Jiajoyce R. Conway is a practicing clinician with over 25 years of invaluable clinical experience in medical and hematology oncology, with a special focus on bone marrow transplant and blood cancers. She initially obtained her Bachelor of Science in Nursing at Coppin University and went on to earn her Master of Science in Nursing with a specialization in Family Nursing Practice, also from Coppin University. Dr. Conway continued to further her nursing education at Chatham University in Pittsburgh, where she obtained her Doctor of Nursing Practice. In addition to her nursing degrees, she also earned her Master of Theology degree from Liberty University.

Passionate about enhancing patient outcomes, Dr. Conway is dedicated to palliative care and providing holistic care with the goal of empowering patients to engage in their health outcomes in any capacity they are able. Her commitment extends to educating healthcare professionals on the impact of social determinants of health, early palliative care interventions, and preventive health measures in improving survival rates and overall quality of life. Driven by the belief that patient education is paramount, she strives to enlighten individuals about the factors influencing their decision-making, well-being, and perceptions of their diseases.

Beyond her clinical practice, Dr. Conway is a published author with articles addressing symptom management, breast cancer in pregnancy, and palliative care in high-risk patients. She developed a high-risk assessment tool, utilizing age and social determinants of health, to aid decision-making in chemotherapy treatment for high-risk oncology patients. She has also spoken on national and local oncology platforms and engages in community outreach and education initiatives.

Matthew Manning, MD, FASTRO, FACCC
Chief of Oncology
Cone Health Cancer Center
Greensboro, NC

Matthew Manning, MD, is chief of oncology at Cone Health Cancer Center in Greensboro, North Carolina. He is board certified in radiation oncology and clinical informatics, and his clinical interests include prostate, brain and spine, and thoracic cancers. His research has focused on high-tech therapies, including stereotactic radiosurgery and brachytherapy.

Dr. Manning has been published in the Journal of Applied Clinical Medical Physics and International Journal of Radiation Oncology | Biology | Physics. In 2016, his work received the Association of Community Cancer Centers’ Innovator Award. In collaboration with the Greensboro Health Disparities Collaborative, Dr. Manning has also co-authored studies to support eliminating racial disparities in cancer care.

Dr. Manning received his medical degree at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU) School of Medicine and completed his residency at VCU Health System.

Lailea Noel
Lailea Noel, PhD, MSW
Assistant Professor and Meadows Foundation Fellow
Steve Hick's School of Social Work, The University of Texas at Austin
Austin, TX

Dr. Noel is an Assistant Professor and Meadows Foundation Fellow in Quality of Life in the Rural Environment at the Steve Hick’s School of Social Work. Her research investigates the influence of inequities in social drivers of health and access to mental health services on the utilization of timely medical treatment, particularly within residentially isolated rural communities. She has a passion for conducting community-based system science research and has a wealth of experience engaging communities, social scientists, mental health professionals, and medical practitioners in such research partnerships.

Dr. Noel’s work in rural health equity has also been recognized nationally. She is on the Board of Directors for the Association of Community Cancer Centers and the Board of Directors of the Association of Oncology Social Workers.

Dr. Noel earned a Ph.D. in social work from Washington University in St. Louis. She also earned a master’s degree in social service administration from the University of Chicago, and a bachelor’s degree in pre-medicine from the University of Michigan.

Kurt Oettel, MD
Director, Gundersen Health System Cancer Center
La Crosse, WI

I have been the Gundersen Health System Cancer Center Director for 10 years. In that period, I have seen many changes driving cancer care within our organization such as precision medicine, staffing shortages, changing treatment paradigms and re-imbursement models just to name a few. In this process of change, cancer care has become a much more complex disease with multiple providers routinely involved in the care of patients and with that it is a significantly more expensive disease to treat. Along with the constant change in cancer care, I too have evolved both as a physician as well as a community cancer center leader.

As cancer center director I have been involved in multiple aspects of the business of cancer care, human resources, financing, risk management, marketing, and information technology. This new set of challenges extended far beyond my medical school training and brought me to pursue an MBA which I completed in May of 2019. I have also realized that as much as I could control and transform within our organization, factors external to our organization are having an outsized influence on cancer care, namely reimbursement models and health care policy decisions. These two factors have led me to be engaged in our state society, the Wisconsin Association of Hematology and Oncology (WAHO) as well our state CDC sponsored program the Wisconsin Cancer Collaborative (WCC) where I sit on the steering committee and chair the policy committee. I have also been involved with the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO). At ASCO I volunteered time with several committees including the Government Relations Committee (GRC) for 3 years as well as leading the State Affiliate Council (SAC) for an additional 3 years. It is with this backdrop that I would like to serve on the Board of Trustees for the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC). I believe that the experience I bring and more importantly the added perspective I could gain, would help me best advocate for the mission of ACCC as well as the patients I treat, and the cancer center I lead. I humbly look forward to the opportunity to serve on the Board of Trustees for the ACCC.

Lori Schneider
Lori Schneider, FACCC
Oncology Operations Manager
Green Bay Oncology
Green Bay, WI

Lori Schneider is an oncology operations manager at Green Bay Oncology and has worked in healthcare for over 25 years. As an operations manager, Schneider oversees the organization’s financial counseling, social work, medical records, reception, and dietitian teams, as well as provider scheduling and credentialing. She joined Green Bay Oncology as a receptionist and later transferred to revenue cycle, where she worked in accounts receivable. In 2006, Schneider developed the financial counseling role at Green Bay Oncology before transitioning to business office manager and, more recently, operations manager roles. 

She is a past chairperson for the Association of Community Cancer Centers (ACCC) Financial Advocacy Network and is currently an ACCC Board Member. Schneider has presented at several conferences on the importance of financial counseling in oncology, including what is needed to have a centralized team that cares for patients' financial and insurance needs (e.g., prior authorizations and financial assistance for medical, radiation, surgical, gynecological, and pediatric oncology). Additional conference topics include the importance of utilizing pharmaceutical and specialty pharmacy representatives to help your cancer program and how to enhance your financial counseling program. Schneider and her team have also assisted cancer programs and practices nationally and locally, including helping them establish and enhance their own financial counseling programs.


Leigha Senter, MS, LGC, FACCC
Licensed Genetic Counselor
Professor, Internal Medicine
The Ohio State University James Cancer Hospital
Columbus, OH

Leigha Senter, MS, LGC, FACCC, is a licensed genetic counselor and clinical professor at The Ohio State University’s James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute where she specializes in cancer genetics risk assessment in women with gynecologic cancers. She is the Associate Director of the Division of Human Genetics.

Senter has more than 20 years of research experience in hereditary cancers with a primary focus in BRCA gene-related projects with more than 100 peer reviewed publications. She is currently a board member for the Association of Community Cancer Centers.

Senter earned a bachelor's degree in molecular genetics from The Ohio State University in Columbus, Ohio, and a master's degree in genetic counseling from the University of Pittsburgh in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Afreen Idris Shariff, MD
Director, Duke Endo-Oncology Program
Associate Director, Cancer Therapy Toxicity Program, Center for Cancer Immunotherapy, Duke Cancer Institute
Co-Founder, Citrus Oncology

Dr. Afreen Shariff is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Duke University and a nationally recognized Endocrinologist and with a focus on endocrine disease in cancer patients. Dr. Shariff is a transformational leader who has created and led several successful initiatives over the years. She is the Founding Director for the Duke Endo Oncology Program, serves as the Associate Director for the Duke Cancer Therapy Toxicity Program, hosts and produces a medical podcast series, Checkpoint NOW and serves as the founding Chair of the Onco-Endocrinology Special interest Group through The Endocrine Society. She is also the Co-founder of Citrus Oncology, a virtual consultative platform for side effect management in cancer patients. Her research interests include optimizing healthcare through value-based, patient-centric clinical and educational programs targeted at improving access and reducing health costs while managing complex oncology patients effectively. She is a Principal Investigator for several studies including a study focused at creating a novel machine learning model to predict hospitalizations from immunotherapy-related adverse events up to 2 weeks before the expected event which was featured in the Science magazine. She is the recipient of the 2023 ACCC Innovator Award, has published in numerous peer-reviewed journals and speaks at several regional and national conferences. Timely access, patient-provider-subspecialist education, care navigation and predicting and preventing hospital admissions from toxicities using AI has been the focus of her career.

Cardinale B. Smith, MD, PhD
Associate Professor
Departments of Medicine (Hematology and Medical Oncology) and Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine
Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai
New York, NY

Cardinale B. Smith, MD, PhD is a Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology and the Brookdale Department of Geriatrics and Palliative Medicine at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, Associate Director for Community, Outreach and Engagement in the Tisch Cancer Institute and the Chief Quality Officer for Cancer Services, Tisch Cancer Center. She is a medical oncologist and palliative care physician whose clinical practice is focused on lung cancer and palliative care. Her research interests focus on doctor-patient communication, evaluating treatment disparities in cancer care, determinants of cancer patients’ quality of care, characterizing barriers to optimal cancer and palliative care and developing approaches to eliminating those barriers among racial and ethnic minorities. Dr. Smith is a 2013 recipient of a mentored research scholar grant from the American Cancer Society to evaluate determinants of disparities in the utilization of palliative care among patients with lung cancer. She was a co-investigator on a Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute grant to teach and enable goals of care conversations among oncologists. Additionally, she is the recipient Sojourn’s Scholar Leadership Grant and an R01 from the National Cancer Institute to evaluate the role of implicit bias among oncologists on minority cancer patient outcomes. Dr. Smith has had numerous publications in peer-reviewed journals, and in 2015 was named one of the Top 40 Inspirational Leaders under 40 by the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine.