St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital is proud to announce James R. Downing, M.D., president and chief executive officer, has been named one of the “100 Most Influential People in Healthcare in 2022” by Modern Healthcare, the influential healthcare industry trade publication. This prestigious recognition program acknowledges and honors individuals who are deemed by their peers and the senior editors of Modern Healthcare to be the most influential figures in the industry in terms of leadership and impact.
“The recognition is a testament to the power of the St. Jude mission and the importance of advancing science to accelerate progress in the treatment of childhood cancer and other catastrophic diseases,” Downing said. “I share this honor with the doctors, nurses, scientists, advocates, supporters and many more who dedicate their talent to the cause of finding cures and saving children.”
Named president and CEO in 2014, Downing is currently leading the institution’s $12.9 billion six-year strategic plan, the largest investment in its 60-year history to advance the study and treatment of pediatric cancer and other catastrophic diseases. The plan includes expanding St. Jude clinical care and scientific programs in Memphis and around the globe; adding 2,300 jobs; providing $2.3 billion in new construction, renovation and capital needs; and opening new areas of research.
Downing’s work as a genome sequencing pioneer, overseeing the Pediatric Cancer Genome Project, was recognized in 2012 by TIME magazine as one of the Top 100 new scientific discoveries. That landmark project to uncover the genetics underlying why childhood cancer arises, spreads and resists treatment has ushered in a decade of discoveries that continues to benefit pediatric patients.
Beyond research, Dr. Downing has been a driving force to take St. Jude to the world. He has championed an expansive program to raise pediatric cancer survival rates internationally. In fewer than five years, St. Jude Global has built an alliance of 165 institutions across 68 countries in seven regions worldwide. These networks are training doctors, nurses, researchers and other professionals; developing and strengthening health care systems; and advancing knowledge to sustain improvements in how medicine is practiced internationally.
“The past year had been one in which disrupters turned into major players and industry leaders raised their voices to effect change within their organizations and the broader community,” said Modern Healthcare Editor Mary Ellen Podmolik. “Our 2022 ranking of the 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare recognizes these individuals who are transforming a major sector of the nation’s economy and are focused on improving care and payment models.”
The complete ranking can be found in the December 5 issue of Modern Healthcare magazine. Profiles of the honorees who are from all sectors of the healthcare industry, from senior level executives to academics and thought leaders, are available online at ModernHealthcare.com/100MostInfluential.
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital
St. Jude Children's Research Hospital is leading the way the world understands, treats and cures childhood cancer, sickle cell disease, and other life-threatening disorders. It is the only National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Center devoted solely to children. Treatments developed at St. Jude have helped push the overall childhood cancer survival rate from 20% to 80% since the hospital opened more than 60 years ago. St. Jude shares the breakthroughs it makes to help doctors and researchers at local hospitals and cancer centers around the world improve the quality of treatment and care for even more children. To learn more, visit stjude.org, read St. Jude Progress blog, and follow St. Jude on social media at @stjuderesearch.