Featured Speakers

No More Team Drama: Ending the Gossip, Cliques, and Other Crap that Can Damage the Multidisciplinary Cancer Care Team

Joe Mull, MEd, CSP

Gossip. Infighting. Complaints. Cliques. Drama is what occurs when team members aren’t given the tools or support they need to rise above stress, selfishness, and disagreements. Team drama wreaks havoc on organizational health. It damages morale, productivity, engagement, and retention. Drama leads to customer complaints, lost revenue, and a talent exodus.

When someone assumes a leadership position, the task of “managing personalities” is not often top of mind. But according to Joe Mull, that ability can be the most important an effective leader can possess. “As it does elsewhere, conflict occurs naturally in the workplace,” says Mull. “Leaders often know part of their job is to foster team spirit, but they don’t always know how to do it.”
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About the Speaker:
Joe Mull, MEd, CSP, is a dynamic, experienced speaker and trainer who works exclusively in healthcare. He deftly merges research in psychology, organizational development, and employee engagement with his practical experience in training healthcare professionals from all over the United States. His funny, engrossing presentation goes well beyond the concept of “team-building” to demonstrate how to influence the interpersonal dynamics of workplace interactions so multidisciplinary cancer teams can consistently work harder, get along better, and “wow” patients and their families.

Joe is the former head of Learning and Development for Physician Services at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, where he directed learning strategy and implementation for one of the largest physician groups in the U.S. Joe travels the country giving healthcare leaders and teams the skills and tools they need to navigate the people management challenges they face every day.

Joe is the author of Cure for the Common Leader: What Physicians & Managers Must Do to Engage & Inspire Healthcare Teams and No More Team Drama: Ending the Gossip, Cliques, & Other Crap that Damage Workplace Teams. Follow Joe on Twitter at @JoeMull77 ‏and explore his resources at joemull.com.


Results Not Typical

Mary Elizabeth Williams

Hours after author and journalist Mary Elizabeth Williams received her melanoma diagnosis, she texted her editor. She had a story due that day, and she was afraid she was going to miss her deadline. “So I told my editor that I was just diagnosed with cancer, and I would be late with my article,” recalls Williams. “I also told her that I wanted to keep my diagnosis private, that I didn’t want my name to be synonymous with cancer.”

The following day, after she returned from her first oncology appointment, Williams took out her laptop, wrote a piece about being diagnosed with cancer, and sent it to her editor. It was published the next morning. “I realized that I didn’t know any other way to experience cancer other than writing about it,” explains Williams.

And she would have plenty to write about.
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About the Speaker:
As one of the first human subjects in the world for the combination treatment that became Yervoy + Opdivo—and among the very first to have a complete response—Mary Elizabeth Williams knows firsthand the risks, concerns, and hopes of patients and doctors in the world of clinical trials.

She knows what the hype and the reality of immunotherapy looks like to people facing a serious cancer diagnosis, and how this scientific breakthrough is different from previous forms of treatment. She also knows the emotional and psychological effects that illness and grief can have on individuals and families—the long term effects of the cancer experience that are less discussed.

As a journalist with over twenty years of experience, Mary Elizabeth Williams has written for numerous publications on a wide variety of topics. Though she writes regularly on cancer and treatment, she also frequently covers entertainment, parenting, education, and mental health. Her book, A Series of Catastrophes and Miracles: A True Story of Love, Science, and Cancer, is part memoir, part behind the scenes look at the new world of scientific research.

Read about Mary Elizabeth’s adventures with Stage 4 cancer and advocating for a better healthcare experience at maryelizabethwilliams.net.


The Changing Face of the Cancer Patient Experience

Laura Holmes Haddad

At age 36, Laura Holmes Haddad had several roles. She was a cookbook editor, a freelance writer, a wife, and the mother of a daughter and newborn son. At age 37, she assumed another unanticipated role when she was diagnosed with cancer. That last role would redefine all of the others and come to dominate Haddad’s life as she battled the stage IV inflammatory breast cancer with which she was diagnosed.

Today, at age 43, Holmes Haddad embraces yet another role: cancer survivor. As a featured speaker at the upcoming ACCC 36th National Oncology Conference, Holmes Haddad will discuss the experience of being diagnosed with cancer at an age that many adults consider to be their “prime time,” during which they build careers, homes, and families. Holmes Haddad says that people in this phase of life experience cancer differently than do older adults, who account for the largest number of patients diagnosed with cancer.
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About the Speaker:
Laura Holmes Haddad was a 37-year-old wine and food writer with two small kids when she was diagnosed with Stage IV inflammatory breast cancer. Getting through the months of treatments, surgeries, and entering survivorship gave her a patient’s perspective like no other. Laura’s family helped her navigate the strange world of cancer but there simply wasn’t time to discover and use all the resources out there.

This Is Cancer is Laura’s response to the overly-earnest, somber, gray cancer survival books she found out there. It’s a thoughtful, informative fabulous-looking result for those who prefer their pathos with equal parts humor and reality and a touch of flair. A "what to expect when you're expecting" book for the diagnosis you don't want but are stuck with, This Is Cancer is the book that patients keep in their "heading to the hospital bag," because it's the only one that tells them what's going on and keeps them company.

Learn more about Laura’s journey at lauraholmeshaddad.com and follow her on Twitter at @HolmesHaddad.