Community Leaders Recognized for Reducing Disparities in Cancer Care

Sept. 19, 2006 – The Program for the Elimination of Cancer Disparities (PECaD) at the Alvin J. Siteman Cancer Center at Barnes-Jewish Hospital and Washington University School of Medicine has honored three individuals for their exemplary contributions to reducing disparities in cancer care. The awards were handed out at an annual recognition ceremony on Sept. 19.

Matthew KreuterMatthew Kreuter received the Research in Action Award, presented to researchers who make significant contributions to improving cancer care. Kreuter is an associate professor of community health at Saint Louis University. He is founder and director of the Health Communication Research Laboratory at the university and leads the National Cancer Institute-funded Center of Excellence in Cancer Communications Research. He has developed a wide range of health communication programs to promote health, modify behavior and prevent and manage disease.

Michell NickersonThe Community Spirit Award was given to Witness Project supervisor Michell Nickerson. The Witness Project is a health and wellness program for African-American women that features survivors who “witness” about their triumph over breast and cervical cancer in churches and community centers. In addition to her work with the Witness Project, Nickerson is involved in a variety of community projects and maintains a professional affiliation with the STL Partnerships for Cancer Awareness and the community arm to the Missouri Show Me Healthy Women Project.

Ronald JacksonRonald Jackson
received the Community Leader Award for his work as a community advocate for breast and prostate cancer screening. Jackson is president of the Breakfast Club Brothers, an integral part of Breakfast Club Inc., a group dedicated to education and support concerning breast cancer care and prevention. The Brothers are husbands, sons and significant others of breast cancer survivors. They support Breakfast Club activities through education and awareness. They also have joined the 100 Black Men of St. Louis group to educate men about prostate cancer and early detection.

As many as 50 community members, faculty members and staff members attended the PECaD awards celebration, including Brenda Battle, director of the Center for Cultural Competence at Barnes-Jewish Hospital, and Timothy Eberlein, director of the Siteman Cancer Center.  

PECaD is co-directed by Dione Farria, assistant professor of radiology at Washington University’s Mallincrokdt Institute of Radiology, and Katherine Jahnige Mathews,  assistant professor of obstetrics and gynecology at Washington University and a physician at Connect Care. The program enhances awareness among underserved patients by expanding working partnerships with local community organizations. These community partners play an important role in helping Siteman spread the word about cancer risks, screening options and programs.

The community event was sponsored, in part, by Pfizer Oncology, the Siteman Cancer Center and the Mallincrokdt Institute of Radiology. For more information about disparities-related research or projects at Siteman, call 314-747-7222 or 800-600-3606.


Award Recipients


Research in Action Award – Mathew Kreuter

Community Spirit Award – Michell Nickerson

Community Leader Award – Ronald Jackson


Research in Action Award – Mario Schootman

Community Spirit Award – Martha Ballentine

Community Leader Award – Tom Bailey and Sherrill Jackson