by Kate Yglesias Houghton, President & CEO, Critical Mass: The Young Adult Cancer Alliance
Growing up my family spent time teaching us about the obligation to serve others. In their eyes, people of action and empathy were to be admired. In college, it was learning about our political process that made me realize that “service to others” was at the core of our government. Laws to effect change. Policies provide protection. A Thanksgiving basket was an act of service but it was not an act of change. By the time I was wrapping up my final courses I knew how I would serve others as a career: work in Washington, DC.
My name is Mark Lewis and I have a confession to make: I arrived late to the party of adolescent/young adult (AYA) oncology, bashfully and in disguise.
I am an adult oncologist, meaning that my practice is medically and legally confined to patients 18 years and older. But I am married to a pediatrician, and I understand that cancer, in all its terrible callousness, shows no respect for age; it can burst forth in the blood of an infant just as catastrophically as it can in the bones of that child’s great-grandfather.