Richard Pazdur, MD

Researcher | 2016

Richard Pazdur, MD, director of the Office of Hematology and Oncology Products at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), has streamlined and accelerated the approval process for promising cancer treatments, giving new hope to thousands of patients.

Dr. Pazdur, whose wife Mary died of ovarian cancer last fall, has become, in his words, a “regulator/advocate.” In the past year, Dr. Pazdur’s oncology team—now exceeding 70 oncologists–has significantly reduced the decision time for approving novel therapies and instituted new approaches to cancer clinical trials.

Formed in 2005, the Office of Hematology and Oncology Products reviews drugs and therapeutic biologics for the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of cancer, as well as drugs and therapeutic biologics for hematologic diseases and medical imaging. Dr. Pazdur facilitates the coordination of oncology activities across all FDA centers and ensures an ongoing outreach and collaboration between the FDA, the National Cancer Institute and other cancer-related organizations within and outside of government.

Well-known in the oncology community as a strong scientific leader, Dr. Pazdur remains passionately committed to the care and treatment of patients with cancer. Before joining the FDA in 1999, Dr. Pazdur served as a practicing oncologist, researcher and professor at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston, where he was director of the medical oncology fellowship program.

Story told by Jordan Rich of The Jordan Rich Show on WBZ NewsRadio 1030. Visit to learn more and meet the rest of our honorees.

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