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National Cancer Institute

Deborah K. Mayer, PhD, RN, AOCN, FAAN

Julia Rowland

Deborah K. Mayer, PhD, RN, AOCN, FAAN, currently serves as the Interim Director of NCI’s Office of Cancer Survivorship.  Dr. Mayer is an advanced practice oncology nurse who has over 40 years of cancer nursing practice, education, research, and management experience. She earned a PhD from the University of Utah, her MSN from Yale University, her BSN from Excelsior College, her Nurse Practitioner Certificate from the University of Maryland, and her diploma from Pennsylvania Hospital School of Nursing.

Dr. Mayer is past president of the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS), was a member of the National Cancer Institute’s National Cancer Advisory Board (a Presidential appointment) and Board of Scientific Advisors. Dr. Mayer was elected as a fellow of the American Academy of Nursing. She is active in ONS and the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and is the Immediate Past Chair of the ASCO Survivorship Committee. Most recently she served as Chair of the ASCO Survivorship Committee. She served as the Editor for the ONS’ Clinical Journal of Oncology Nursing (CJON) from 2007-2015 and has published over 150 articles, book chapters and editorials on cancer related issues. She was awarded the ONS Lifetime Achievement Award in 2015 and, in 2016, was appointed as the only nurse to Vice President Biden’s Cancer Moonshot Blue Ribbon Panel. In 2018, she began consulting with the National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Control and Population Sciences on issues related to cancer survivorship.

Dr. Mayer is the Frances Hill Fox Distinguished Professor at the School of Nursing at UNC and the UNC Lineberger Director of Cancer Survivorship. She is the oncology coordinator for the oncology focus of the nurse practitioner program. Her program of research focuses on the issues facing cancer survivors and improving cancer care. She has a clinical practice working with breast cancer survivors. As a nurse who works “frontline” with cancer survivors and as a cancer survivor herself, she brings a unique perspective to her clinical, research and health policy collaborations with cancer survivors, primary care providers, cancer specialists and researchers.