Introduced Version



    A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION honoring the life and career of Dr. Stephen Douglass Williams.


     , read first time and referred to Committee on


First Regular Session 116th General Assembly (2009)


    A CONCURRENT RESOLUTION honoring the life and career of Dr. Stephen Douglass Williams.

    Whereas, Dr. Stephen Douglas Williams was a research physician who became the founding director of the Indiana University Melvin and Bren Simon Cancer Center in 1992. On Sunday, February 15, 2009 , Dr. Williams lost his battle with cancer, the very disease he dedicated his career to fighting;

    Whereas, Dr. Williams received the President's Medal for Excellence, Indiana University's highest faculty honor, at the August 2008 dedication of the expanded IU Simon Cancer Center. During his acceptance, Dr. Williams reflected upon his own rigorous cancer treatment and pledged to redouble the Center's research efforts in cancer prevention;

    Whereas, Patients and colleagues appreciated Dr. Williams as an approachable, encouraging, and effective leader. His determination to create a world-class cancer research enterprise was bolstered by his sincere commitment to patients;

    Whereas, Dr. Williams promoted the Center's science-to-solution agenda _ commonly referred to as translational research _ throughout his tenure. He often

marveled at the people who are alive because of research. He was brilliant, but humble, and always optimistic;

    Whereas, In addition to directing the IU Simon Cancer Center, Dr. Williams served as the HH Gregg Senior Chair in Oncology and Associate Dean of Cancer Research at the IU School of Medicine;

    Whereas, Dr. Williams was born in Shelbyville and grew up in Bedford, the only child of newspaper publisher Robert Williams and his wife Gladys. He was a graduate of DePauw University and entered the Indiana University School of Medicine in 1967. He then completed a medical residency and internship at Indiana University before completing his IU Medical Oncology Fellowship. In 1978, Dr. Williams became a faculty member of the Indiana University School of Medicine and was the first appointed oncologist at the Richard L. Roudebush Veterans Administration Medical Center;

    Whereas, Dr. Williams earned national recognition as a physician researcher for his role in investigating the successful use of chemotherapy in the treatment of ovarian and testicular germ cell tumors. He was consistently ranked nationally among cancer care specialists in America's Top Doctors for Cancer. During his tenure, the cancer center was consistently ranked among the top clinical programs in the country in U.S. News & World Report;

    Whereas, Family, friends, and colleagues joined with Dr. Williams on January 12, 2009, at a ceremony where Dr. Williams was presented with the Sagamore of the Wabash award from Governor Mitch Daniels, the highest honor an Indiana governor can bestow;

    Whereas, Dr. Williams authored and co-authored 158 scientific, peer-reviewed publications, 95 abstracts, and 42 textbook chapters on the diagnosis and treatment of genitourinary tumors. He served in numerous leadership

roles with the American Society of Clinical Oncology, the Gynecologic Oncology Group and on a grant review committee of the National Cancer Institute;

    Whereas, Dr. Williams' remarkable leadership came to light during the IU Simon Cancer Center's 2008 NCI grant renewal process. In 1994, the center's extramural research funding totaled $16 million; today it is over $75 million. The number of scientific members of the cancer center has doubled; more than 220 investigators now focus on the scientific discovery and translation of basic, clinical, and population science into new prevention, diagnostic, and treatment modalities. In 1994, 2,000 new patients visited the IU Cancer Center; today, more than 3,400 new patients visit the center each year. Moreover, a $50 million naming gift from Melvin and Bren Simon in 2006 signified a “coming of age” for the cancer program that Dr. Williams had been charged with building and directing; and

    Whereas, Dr. Williams' commitment to his professional life was exceeded only by his devotion to his family. Dr. Williams is survived by his wife Kathryn and their children Thomas and Caroline. He will be greatly missed by his family, friends, colleagues and patients: Therefore,

Be it resolved by the Senate     of the General Assembly

of the State of Indiana, the House of Representatives     concurring:

    SECTION 1. That the Indiana General Assembly honors the life and career of Dr. Stephen Douglass Williams.
    SECTION 2. The Secretary of the Senate is hereby directed to transmit a copy of this Resolution to Kathy Smith-Andrew, Associate Director for State Relations at Indiana University, Kathryn Williams, and her two children Thomas and Caroline Williams.