Karen Knudsen, Ph.D.
Director, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Jefferson

Dr. Knudsen is the third Director of the Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center at Jefferson, an NCI-designated Cancer Center since 1995. Dr. Knudsen was appointed in January 2015 after having served as the Deputy Director and the founding member of the prostate cancer program. Prior to taking on the directorship, Dr. Knudsen also served as the Vice Provost of Thomas Jefferson University. In addition to Cancer Center leadership, Dr. Knudsen is Chair of the Department of Cancer Biology for Thomas Jefferson University and holds the Hilary Koprowski Endowed Professorship. Given her translational research,
Dr. Knudsen holds joint appointments in the departments of Medical Oncology, Urology, and Radiation Oncology.

Dr. Knudsen received her BS in Biology from the George Washington University, and her PhD from the University of California at San Diego, where she focused on cell cycle checkpoint control. She completed her postdoctoral fellowship training with Webster K. Cavenee, studying hormone action and the impact of cell cycle dysregulation on prostate cancer progression. Dr. Knudsen served as tenured faculty at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine prior to recruitment to Thomas Jefferson University in 2007.

Dr. Knudsen has a 20-year history of continuous funding from the National Institute of Health and has expertise in elucidating the molecular basis of hormone-dependent cancer development and progression. Dr. Knudsen serves as an editor on several leading oncology journals, including as Editor-in-Chief of AACR’s Molecular Cancer Research and as an Associate Editor for Oncogene. Dr. Knudsen has received numerous awards for her accomplishments, including the Richard E. Weitzman Laureate Award from the Endocrine Society, the Sophie Yen Award for Distinguished Training in Translational Research, and the SWIU/ SBUR Award for Excellence in Urologic Research. Dr. Knudsen has longstanding experience in Cancer Center leadership and, based on her expertise, serves on leading review, advisory, and elected panels for the Department of Defense, the American Society for Clinical Oncology (ASCO), the American Association for Cancer Research (AACR), and the NIH, including Parent Committee-A National Cancer Institute. Dr. Knudsen currently leads the Advanced Prostate Cancer Track for the GU-ASCO Steering Committee. In 2012, she was named Editor-in-chief of AACR Journal Molecular Cancer Research. In 2018, Dr. Knudsen was elected Vice President/President-Elect of the Association of American Cancer Institutes’ (AACI) Board of Directors.