Steve Stadum joined Fred Hutch on July 5, 2016, as executive vice president and chief operating officer. A Portland native, he came to Seattle with a track record of accomplishment at Oregon Health & Science University, where he was chief operating officer of OHSU’s Knight Cancer Institute and played a central role in securing $1 billion in funding to launch a vast expansion of the institute.
At the Hutch, Stadum is a key member of President and Director Dr. Gary Gilliland’s staff, responsible for all operational activities of the research center, which has a 15-acre campus and employs 2,700 faculty and support personnel. He also plays a central role in relations between Fred Hutch and its Seattle Cancer Care Alliance partners: UW Medicine and Seattle Children’s.
“He’s fantastic at building organizations,” Gilliland said. “He understands academics, he understands administration, and he knows how to put buildings up. I have the greatest respect for what he did at OHSU.”
When Nike founder Phil Knight offered OHSU a $500 million contribution in 2013, it came with a challenge. The university had to raise a like amount within two years or the offer would be withdrawn. Stadum worked to forge a partnership of private donors to raise money, and he helped engineer passage of a $200 million construction bond issue in the Oregon legislature. They met the goal in June 2015, months ahead of schedule.
Trained as a lawyer, Stadum has worked for OHSU for 17 years, first as general counsel, then in a variety of administrative leadership roles before being appointed COO of the Knight Cancer Institute in 2010. The quest to end cancer is deeply rooted for Stadum. When he was 15 growing up in Portland, his father died of lung cancer. When he was 30, his mother died of breast cancer. “It’s a privilege to work in a place where, although I’m not going to find the cure, I can help bring together those who can,” he said.