Speakers are listed in order of appearance on the agenda

Brooks.jpgRobert Brooks, M.D. - Welcome & Overview

Dr. Brooks has practiced medicine in Tucson since 1982. He is a medical oncologist with a special interest in breast cancer. Dr. Brooks is a member of the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) and a past member of ASCO's clinical practice committee. He is a founder of the Life Beyond Cancer Program, an annual retreat focusing on cancer survivorship held at Miraval in Tucson and has served on the editorial board of CURE Magazine. His past appointments have included Medical Director of Patient Advocacy for US Oncology, Chief of Staff of St. Mary's Hospital in Tucson, the Board of Directors of the Southern Arizona Division of the Susan G. Komen Foundation, and the Board of Directors of the Association of Community Cancer Centers. Dr. Brooks served as the first president of the Arizona Clinical Oncology Society. He has been recognized several times as a Best Doctor and also as one of America's Top Oncologists by the Consumers Research Council of America. Dr. Brooks currently serves as the Medical Director of Oncology Program at Tucson Medical Center and on the Board of Directors for the Arizona Oncology Foundation.



Aleksandar Sekulic, M.D., PhD - Using Genomics to Outsmart Cancer

Dr. Sekulic is a vice chair of the Department of Dermatology at Mayo Clinic in Arizona and deputy director for Mayo Clinic Cancer Center in Arizona. He also serves as associate director for the Center for Individualized Medicine and chair of the Cutaneous Oncology Disease Group. He joined the staff of Mayo Clinic in 2006 and holds the academic rank of associate professor of dermatology, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science. 

He received his medical degree from the University of Zagreb School of Medicine in Croatia and earned his doctorate in immunology at Mayo Clinic Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, where he subsequently completed a postdoctoral fellowship in dermatology. He further trained at Mayo Clinic School of Graduate Medical Education, completing an internship in internal medicine and the Clinician Investigator Residency Training Program in dermatology, followed by a year as chief resident associate through the Clinician Investigator Training Program.

Dr. Sekulic’s clinical practice focuses on skin cancers, including malignant melanoma and other pigmented lesions, nonmelanoma skin cancers and cutaneous T-cell lymphoma. His research is centered on identifying the genetics and molecular mechanisms driving skin cancers, as well as finding more effective approaches to diagnose and treat skin cancers. His contribution to development of new therapies is illustrated by his leadership role in bringing the first therapy for treatment of advanced basal cell carcinoma to the FDA for approval.


Susan Leigh, BSN, RN, Survivorship Consultant – “My Glass Half-Full Keeps Spilling!" The Continuing Challenges of Life Beyond Cancer

After receiving her degree in nursing from the University of Arizona, Susan Leigh served as a lieutenant in the U.S. Army and completed a tour of duty in the Mekong Delta, Vietnam, in 1971. Soon after her return from Vietnam, she was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma and treated with some of the earliest forms of chemotherapy and radiation. This experience influenced her decision to become an oncology nurse.

For the past three decades, Leigh has focused her efforts on national advocacy work with special emphasis on long-term and late effects of cancer treatment. Her most cherished involvement has been with the National Coalition for Cancer Survivorship as a founding member and past president. She also has been actively involved with many professional organizations, including the Oncology Nursing Society and the National Cancer Institute.

Leigh also worked as a survivorship consultant and educator with Arizona Oncology in Tucson until health issues accelerated her decision to retire. As major treatment-related cardiac issues and a paralyzed vocal cord made it difficult to fulfill work obligations, she continues to be available in a consultant capacity. Besides surviving Hodgkin lymphoma, she has also been treated for breast and bladder cancers, and recently completed targeted radiation therapy for early stage lung cancer.

Holstein.jpgDr. Lana Holstein, M.D. - Loving the One You're With – Intimacy After Cancer

Dr. Lana Holstein did her undergraduate work at Stanford University and initially thought law was her field.  However, after one year at Stanford law school, she decided to go into medicine.  She completed her medical training at Yale Medical School and did her Family Practice Residency (along with her physician husband) at the University of Arizona. After 15 years of a shared family practice in Flagstaff, Arizona, they returned to Tucson, where Dr. Holstein was director of Women's Health at Canyon Ranch for 10 years and then the Managing Director of Sexuality and Vitality at Miraval Resort for six years during which their couples sexuality program was featured on Oprah.

Now semi-retired, she does life coaching for individuals and groups and plays golf! Dr. Holstein is the author of How to Have Magnificent Sex, The 7 Dimensions of a Vital Sexual Connection. She and her husband wrote a second sexuality book on their innovative program titled, Your Long Erotic Weekend: Four Days of Passion for a Lifetime of Magnificent Sex.  Dr. Holstein has appeared on national TV several times including the Today Show, the CBS Early Show and the Oprah Winfrey Show. 

Laing.jpgRachael Laing - Exercise, Diet, Inflammation and Alternative Treatments

Rachael Laing is a Certified Health Coach, yoga instructor and teaches plant based, whole foods nutrition and wellness. She works with clients that have cardiovascular issues and those who need to lose weight. Lange’s counseling includes plant-based nutrition, including healthy shopping, nutrition education and lessons on simple food preparation and meal planning. She also leads exercise programs at Tucson Medical Center.

Fernandez.JPGCelestino Fernández, Ph.D. – Closing Speaker: Finding Happiness Everyday

Celestino Fernández, Distinguished Professor Emeritus, served as professor of sociology at the University of Arizona for 39 years (until his retirement in 2015); he also served in several administrative positions, including as Vice President for Academic Outreach and International Affairs.  Prof. Fernández has published, taught courses, and lectured widely on various topics, including leadership, happiness, education, and immigration. He has published approximately 50 articles and book chapters, has composed about 50 corridos (Mexican ballads), and participated in as many accreditation reviews throughout the U.S. and abroad.  He continues to consult and teach a popular class on Happiness.  He completed both the M.A. and Ph.D. at Stanford University.