On Friday the Vice President appointed Greg Simon to serve as the Executive Director for the Cancer Moonshot Task Force. Simon is currently CEO of Poliwogg, a financial services company focused on investments in the life sciences. Before Poliwogg Simon worked at Merck, and also served as a policy advisor to Vice-President Gore from 1991-1997.
From 2003-2009 Simon was also involved in FasterCures, a self-described ‘action tank’ focused on cutting through roadblocks and otherwise accelerating the process of translating research data into cures. In most cases this would be the critical piece that makes Simon quite suited to facilitating many of the same functions as the Executive Director of the Task Force.
But Simon is a cancer survivor. Diagnosed with leukemia in 2014, he has recently completed one course of chemotherapy and is currently healthy. The Task Force only has the rest of the Obama Administration to do its work, but Simon’s recent experience may add to that sense of urgency.
In related activity, the Vice President has continued his listening tour of various cancer research facilities. On Monday he was in Seattle at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center.