Former Board Chair Remembered as Leader, Mentor and Advocate
Susan G. Komen®, the world’s leading breast cancer organization, released the following statement upon the passing of its former Board Chair, Dr. LaSalle D. Leffall, Jr.
“Our hearts are heavy today at the loss of our good friend and mentor Dr. LaSalle D. Leffall, Jr.,” said Paula Schneider, CEO, Susan G. Komen. “Throughout his remarkable career he touched the lives of patients, providers and researchers, and helped inspire a focus on understanding and addressing health disparities, both at Komen and within the larger cancer community. We continue to be inspired by his legacy. Our thoughts and prayers are with his wife Ruthie, and their son, LaSalle, III.”
Leffall, who twice served as Chair of the Susan G. Komen Board of Directors, was a prominent surgeon and oncologist, as well as a widely regarded medical educator and a leader in professional and civic organizations. He was the first Charles R. Drew professor of Surgery at Howard University College of Medicine, where he trained thousands of medical students and general surgery residents. He was devoted to the study of cancer, particularly among the African American population. In 2006, Komen established the LaSalle D. Leffall, Jr. Komen Fellowship in Health Disparities to support the participation of underrepresented racial and ethnic groups in the field of breast cancer. The fellowship provided funding at the post-doctoral level to a host institution, for a three-year program supporting training and research addressing health disparities as they pertain to breast cancer.