The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) has named Brian Hill of Newport Beach, Calif., as its 2010 Survivor Circle Award winner. Hill will be recognized with a trophy and a $1,000 prize during the Awards Ceremony on Tuesday, November 2, 2010, during ASTRO's 52nd Annual Meeting in San Diego. He has chosen to donate the funds from the award to benefit The Oral Cancer Foundation, the nonprofit he started a decade ago.
The Survivor Circle Award recognizes a cancer survivor in the San Diego area who has given back to the community by devoting his or her time to helping others with cancer. Hill was diagnosed with Stage 4 metastatic tonsil cancer in 1997. When he was going through treatment, he had many questions about side effects and realized there was a lack of information and awareness about head and neck cancer even though the disease has a very high death rate, due to it being caught at a late stage in most cases.
"There was a huge lack of information available, and I was desperate to find someone to talk to who had gone through the same thing I was experiencing," Hill said. "I knew that if I was feeling this way, there had to be others feeling my frustrations too. I then became a student of the disease. "
After Hill completed his grueling but successful radiation treatments at M.D. Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, he and his wife Ingrid founded The Oral Cancer Foundation in 1999, which is now a national nonprofit charity. Besides its original mission of patient support, it is involved in advocacy issues, sponsorship of research and public awareness.
"Being chosen by ASTRO in this way is a huge honor. I feel as if this is the second time I am the beneficiary, as I owe my being here today to the doctors and radiation technology, which saved my life." He said.
As the pro bono director of the foundation, Hill spends his time speaking at symposia and universities worldwide. He has also worked as an advocate with congressmen and sen
|Contact: Beth Bukata|
American Society for Radiation Oncology