Diane Blum, MSWFormer CancerCare Executive Director
Diane Blum, MSW served as CancerCare's executive director for the past 20 years. Ms. Blum joined CancerCare in 1984 as Director of Social Service, and was named Executive Director in 1990. During Ms. Blum's tenure, CancerCare has more than doubled in size and provided free counseling, education and support services to millions of people affected by cancer. Additionally, under her leadership, CancerCare introduced numerous innovative programs, such as its free Telephone Education Workshops (now known as Connect Education Workshops); its web-based services and publications department, which produces free booklets and fact sheets on coping with cancer and other cancer-related topics; and its Co-Payment Assistance Foundation, which provides financial grants to cancer patients to help cover the costs of their insurance co-payments for certain cancer treatments.
Ms. Blum's areas of expertise include the psychosocial needs of cancer patients and their families; costs of cancer treatments and care; women and breast cancer; cancer survivorship; and non-profit management. Previously, Ms. Blum served as a social work supervisor at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Co-founder of the National Alliance of Breast Cancer Organizations, she is also a founder of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month. She serves as Editor-in-Chief of cancer.net, the ASCO website for patients and the public, and is also a member of the editorial boards of five other oncology-related publications.
Additionally, she has served on committees of the Institute of Medicine, ASCO, and the National Association of Social Work, among others. Most recently, Ms. Blum was one of 15 members of an expert panel that recommended psychosocial services be included as standard care for all cancer patients. She currently serves on ASCO’s Cost of Care Task Force, examining the financial impact of cancer treatments on patients and their families.
Ms. Blum’s awards include the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Board of Sponsors of National Breast Cancer Awareness Month, the Special Recognition Award from the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship, the Republic Bank Breast Cancer Research Foundation Award, and the Special Recognition Award of the American Society of Clinical Oncology.
Ms. Blum has written and lectured extensively about the psychosocial needs of cancer patients and their families. Her research has been published in a variety of medical journals including the American Journal of Hospice and Palliative Care, Journal of Oncology, Journal of Psychosocial Oncology, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, Annals of Internal Medicine, and Oncology Nursing News, among others.
Ms. Blum left CancerCare to become Chief Executive Officer of the Lymphoma Research Foundation, based in New York City, which is dedicated to curing lymphoma. Ms. Blum received a bachelor's degree from the University of Rochester and a master's degree from the School of Social Welfare at the State University of New York at Buffalo.