New Leadership at the Smoking Cessation Leadership Center

We are excited to announce that effective January 1, 2022, Dr. Nancy Rigotti, currently Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and founding director of the Massachusetts General Hospital’s Tobacco Research and Treatment Center, will become the new SCLC director. Dr. Rigotti is one of the world’s leading experts in smoking cessation, and brings extensive experience and credibility to this role. A board-certified general internist, she is internationally known and recognized for her extensive research to reduce the health burden of tobacco use by evaluating tobacco cessation treatments and promoting their adoption in both inpatient and outpatient settings. The unit she established in Boston became one the nation’s outstanding smoking cessation sites, and her research has resulted in over 300 publications supported by multiple grants. She was a member of the National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine panel that produced the landmark 2018 report, Public Health Consequences of E-Cigarettes, and has been an author on Cochrane Collaboratives evaluating the efficacy of smoking cessation interventions. Dr. Rigotti has served as President of the Society for Research in Nicotine and Tobacco as well as the Society for General Internal Medicine, and has won numerous awards. A graduate of Stanford and Harvard Medical School, she is eager to accept the responsibility of continuing and expanding the impact of SCLC.

In the six-month interval before she arrives at UCSF and while she is transitioning her current responsibilities, Dr. Rigotti will review current SCLC programs, familiarize herself with the staff and faculty at UCSF as well as our national partners, and consider what new directions SCLC might take. She encourages anyone with ideas or suggestions to contact either her ([email protected]) or Catherine Saucedo, deputy director of SCLC ([email protected]). During the next six months I will work with Nancy and our superb staff to assure a smooth leadership transition, and—of course—will be available as needed thereafter.

This January will mark the 19th year that SCLC has been in existence. During that time there has been substantial progress in reducing smoking prevalence in the United States, with resulting declines in death and disability from tobacco use. SCLC has been proud to have played a role in that progress. Yet there is much still to do. About half a million people die annually from tobacco-induced illnesses in the United States alone, and 34 million Americans still smoke. Under Dr. Rigotti’s leadership, SCLC will continue to work toward making tobacco use obsolete and thereby improving the health of the public. I am thrilled that someone with her credentials and experience will be leading the organizations that I began almost two decades ago. Please join us in welcoming her to this new role.