Patient Advocate Michael Kaplan to Lead Melanoma Research Alliance
The Melanoma Research Alliance (MRA), the world’s largest private funder of melanoma research, has named Michael Kaplan as its new leader. For the past 20 years, Mr. Kaplan has headed various nonprofits and patient advocacy groups, including his most recent position as President and CEO of Washington, DC–based AIDS United. He will assume the role of MRA’s President and CEO effective July 5, 2016.
“Michael has a proven record as a passionate supporter of health research and policy and as a seasoned nonprofit manager. We are delighted to have him join MRA,” said Debra Black, Co-Founder and Chair of MRA. “His success at AIDS United and previous organizations and a career advocating for better options for patients make him an ideal candidate to work with our stakeholders on our mission to accelerate research, advance cures, and prevent more melanomas. There is so much work to still be done in this space, and we are excited for Michael to bring his experience to this arena.”
“MRA has in its relatively short history established itself as a vital leader in promoting treatments and advancing studies to cure melanoma, a deadly cancer that until only recently has begun to show some progress in its management,” said Mr. Kaplan. “I am excited and pleased to have this opportunity to join MRA and help advance its critical agenda, particularly at this pivotal time in cancer
Prior to joining AIDS United, Mr. Kaplan held leadership positions at Cascade AIDS Project in Portland, Oregon, and the Academy for Educational Development, Futures Group International, and the National Youth Advocacy Coalition in Washington, D.C. He has served on the boards of several organizations focusing on health issues from HIV/AIDS to behavioral health. ■