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Washington, D.C. [February 13, 2008]--Lung Cancer Alliance announced today that former Secretary of Transportation Norman Y. Mineta has joined its Board of Directors.
LCA Board Chairman Rear Admiral (retired) Philip J. Coady issued the following statement:
“Secretary Mineta’s remarkable career in public service over the past four decades and his leadership on national security, transportation, infrastructure and technology issues has impacted every person in this country. A veteran and a ten-term member of Congress, he is also only the second person in history to serve on the cabinet of both a Democratic and a Republican President - a tribute to his “can do” determination in the face of every challenge he has faced.
“Secretary Mineta is also, like me, a lung cancer survivor. He has never shirked from the tough issues and we are grateful that Secretary Mineta will add his formidable talents to this battle against lung cancer,” he said.
LCA is the only national organization dedicated solely to advocacy and support services for patients and those at risk for lung cancer which is the leading cause of cancer deaths among men and women and every ethnic group. Annually lung cancer kills more people than all the other major cancers - breast, prostate, ovarian and colon cancers - combined.
“Nearly forty years after Congress passed the National Cancer Act of 1971 the 5-year survival rate for lung cancer is still only 15%. That is unacceptable.” said Mineta.
“Even though lung cancer accounts for one in every three cancer deaths, lung cancer research has never been a priority. There has never been a comprehensive plan of attack incorporating tobacco cessation, early detection, collaborative research and more effective treatments - and that is unacceptable,” he said.
Laurie Fenton- Ambrose, president and CEO of LCA, said that by joining the Board, “Secretary Mineta elevates the debate and gives added hope to those with lung cancer, their caregivers and those at risk for the disease. The decades of stigma and underfunding may finally be at an end.”
“Over 50% of new cases are in former smokers, many of whom quit decades ago and did not even realize that they were still at high risk. An additional 10% of new cases have never smoked and yet they too are blamed for their disease,” she noted.
Secretary Mineta represented San Jose and Silicon Valley in Congress from 1975 to 1995. As chairman of the Aviation Subcommittee he garnered international acclaim for achieving smoke-free airplanes, and as chairman of the full Public Works and Transportation Committee he authored sweeping intermodal transportation and infrastructure legislation.
When tapped by then President Bill Clinton to be Secretary of Commerce in 2000, he fostered international cooperation on technology, patent and trademark, fisheries and other friction causing issues.
Under President George W. Bush, Mineta became the longest serving Secretary of Transportation in history, and after 9/11 guided the creation of the Transportation Security Administration.
He is currently Vice Chairman of Hill & Knowlton in Washington, D.C.
Lung Cancer Alliance (www.LungCancerAlliance.org) is the only national non-profit organization dedicated exclusively to patient support and advocacy for those living with or at risk for lung cancer. Lung Cancer Alliance is committed to leading the movement to reverse decades of stigma and neglect by empowering those with or at risk for the disease, elevating awareness and changing health policy.