About Clinical Research

The Clinical Research Division collaborates extensively with our colleagues throughout Fred Hutch as well as with our partner patient-care organizations – University of Washington Medical Center and Seattle Children’s Hospital. Additionally, we lead several nationwide multi-center studies aiming to improve cancer treatment and care. More than 75 percent of our faculty treat patients as well as conducting laboratory research and clinical trials.

To accelerate our research, division scientists can access critical shared institutional resources, including specimen storage, state-of-the-art imaging and structural analysis technology, pathology services, cell and reagent production, and clinical trials coordination and support.

Under the visionary leadership of internationally renowned breast cancer expert Dr. Nancy Davidson, we are honing streamlined, coordinated clinical trial processes as well as upgrading our institution-wide genome repositories.

Our Leadership

See our Faculty & Labs
Dr. Nancy Davidson

Director, Nancy Davidson, M.D.

Dr. Nancy Davidson is director of the Clinical Research Division and president and executive vice president of Clinical Affairs. She joined Fred Hutch in 2016 after serving as director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute for nearly a decade. She is a world-renowned physician-scientist in cancer biology and treatment, focusing particularly on breast cancer.

Davidson founded the Breast Cancer Program at Johns Hopkins University and has served in leadership roles and on scientific advisory boards for multiple internationally recognized cancer centers and research organizations.

In addition to seeing patients, Davidson’s team has made landmark discoveries about the way hormones affect gene expression and cell growth in breast cancer. She has also directed several important national clinical trials of new breast cancer treatments that have ultimately changed universal standards of care.

Davidson uses her scientific experience and clinical acumen to harness the collective strengths of Fred Hutch and our partner patient-care organizations. The goal is to accelerate the translation of pioneering discoveries to transform the care of patients with cancer.

Dr. Stephanie Lee

Associate Director, Stephanie Lee, M.D., M.P.H.

Dr. Stephanie Lee joined the Hutch in 2006 after completing a hematology/oncology fellowship at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. In 2018, she earned an appointment as the Giuliani/Press Endowed Chair in Cancer Research.

Lee serves as Principal Investigator of the Chronic GVHD Consortium, an NIH-funded group that seeks to understand and cure chronic graft-versus-host disease, a serious complication of transplantation. In addition to her laboratory work, Lee treats patients with leukemia and other blood disorders at the Fred Hutch clinic.

A Legacy of Training

Training the Clinicians Around the Globe on Lifesaving Treatments

Our division was established on the pioneering discovery of bone marrow transplantation as a cure for leukemia. We have honored the legacy of that initial discovery by training physicians in Seattle and around the globe to perform this lifesaving procedure. To date, doctors worldwide have performed more than 1 million blood stem cell transplants, curing a variety of blood cancers as well as serious genetic disorders. As our clinicians and researchers pursue ever more targeted treatments to cure cancer and other deadly illnesses, we remain committed to sharing this vital expertise.

Training the Next Generation of Researchers and Clinicians

Our commitment to sharing discoveries begins with the clinician-researchers at Fred Hutch and our partner in patient care, Seattle Children’s Hospital. Our senior faculty are dedicated to mentoring gifted medical students, PhD candidates, and post-doctoral fellows in the most advanced techniques and approaches to cancer diagnosis and treatment. We also support 10 qualified young scientists per year to train at Fred Hutch in multidisciplinary methods that will enable them to excel in the increasingly complex field of cancer research.

Providing Access to the Finest Research and Patient Care Institutions

The pediatric hematology/oncology fellowship program at the University of Washington is a three-year training program that prepares physicians to become leaders in the field of pediatric hematology oncology. The fellowship is fully-funded by a National Institutes of Health T32 training grant. The alliance of Seattle Children’s Hospital, the University of Washington Medical Center and the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Center together means fellows have access to some of the finest research and patient care institutions in the world.

Past Leadership

Photo of E. Donnall Thomas

E. Donnall Thomas, M.D., 1974-1989

Photo of John Hansen

John Hansen, M.D., 1989-1993

Photo of Fred Appelbaum

Fred Appelbaum, M.D., 1993-2013

Photo of Oliver Press

Oliver Press, M.D., Ph.D., 2013-2016

E. Donnall Thomas, M.D., 1974-1989

Nobel Award-winning physician Dr. E. Donnall Thomas served as Fred Hutch’s founding director. His pioneering discoveries in bone marrow transplantation transformed the care of patients with leukemia and other blood cancers. Where once these diseases were virtually incurable, survival rates are now as high as 90 percent.

Thomas’s visionary leadership forged our values of bold creativity and excellence in patient care and laboratory research. His lasting legacy persists in our relentless efforts to find a cure for cancer and other debilitating diseases.

Harnessing Knowledge and Technology

Our research extends to eliminating barriers to successful therapies such as acute complications during the transplant process or long-term effects after treatment.

See Available Jobs in Our Division


Nancy Davidson, M.D.

Division Director & Senior Vice President

Emily Ford

Faculty Affairs Coordinator

Donna Lipsky

Associate Vice President

Doug Lowe

Fiscal Administrator

Karla Smith

Executive Assistant to Division Director & Senior Vice President