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Samuel S. Epstein, M.D., Chairman

Biography of Samuel S. Epstein

International Leading Authority on the Causes and Prevention of Cancer
Samuel S. Epstein, M.D. is professor emeritus of Environmental and Occupational Medicine at the University of Illinois School of Public Health, and Chairman of the Cancer Prevention Coalition. He has published some 260 peer reviewed articles, and authored or co-authored 11 books including: the prize-winning 1978 The Politics of Cancer; the 1995 Safe Shopper's Bible; the 1998 Breast Cancer Prevention Program; the 1998 The Politics of Cancer, Revisited; the 2001 GOT (Genetically Engineered) MILK!  The Monsanto rBGH/BST Milk Wars Handbook; the 2001 Unreasonable Risk.  How to Avoid Cancer from Cosmetics and Personal Care Products: The Neways Story;  the 2005 Cancer-Gate:  How to Win the Losing Cancer War; the 2006 What's In Your Milk?; and the 2009 Toxic Beauty (with Randall Fitzgerald).

Dr. Epstein is an internationally recognized authority on avoidable causes of cancer, particularly unknowing exposures to industrial carcinogens in air, water, the workplace, and consumer products--food, cosmetics and toiletries, and household products including pesticides--besides carcinogenic prescription drugs. 

Dr. Epstein's past public policy activities include: consultant to the U.S. Senate Committee on Public Works; drafting Congressional legislation; frequently invited Congressional testimony; membership of key federal committees including EPA's Health Effects Advisory Committee, and the Department of Labor's Advisory Committee on the Regulation of Occupational Carcinogens; and key expert on banning of hazardous products and pesticides including DDT, Aldrin and Chlordane. He is the leading international expert on cancer risks of petrochemicals and of consumer products including: rBGH milk; meat from cattle implanted with sex hormones in feedlots, on which he has testified for the E.C. at January 1997 WTO hearings; and irradiated food. In 1998, he presented "Legislative Proposals for Reversing the Cancer Epidemic" to the Swedish Parliament, and in 1999 to the U.K. All Parliamentary Cancer Group. He is also the leading critic of the cancer establishment, the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and American Cancer Society (ACS), for fixation on damage control--screening, diagnosis and treatment, and genetic research--with indifference for cancer prevention, which for the ACS extends to hostility. This mindset is compounded by conflicts of interest with the cancer drug industry, and also with the petrochemical and other industries in the case of the ACS. 

His past professional society involvement includes: founder of the Environmental Mutagen Society; President of the Society for Occupational and Environmental Health; President of the Rachel Carson Council; and advisor to environmental, citizen activist and organized labor groups. 

His numerous honors include: the 1969 Society of Toxicology Achievement Award; the 1977 National Wildlife Federation Conservancy Award; the 1989 Environmental Justice Award; the 1998 Right Livelihood Award ("Alternative Nobel Prize") for international contributions to cancer prevention; the 1999 Bioneers Award; the 2000 Project Censored Award ("Alternative Pulitzer Prize" for investigative journalism) for an article critiquing the American Cancer Society, and the 2005 Albert Schweitzer Golden Grand Medal for Humanitarianism from the Polish Academy of Medicine, and the 2007 Dragonfly Award from Beyond Pesticides.   Dr. Epstein has extensive media experience with: numerous regional and national radio programs, including NPR; major TV programs, including Sixty Minutes, Face the Nation, Meet the Press, McNeil/Lehrer, Donohue, Good Morning America, and the Today Show; Canadian, European, Australian and Japanese TV; and numerous editorials and letters to leading national newspapers. 

Dr. Epstein is also a member of the National Writers Union, AFL-CI0. 

Contacts: University of Illinois at Chicago

School of Public Health, MC 922
2121 West Taylor Street

Chicago, IL 60612
(312) 996-2297; FAX (312) 413-9898
(include fax cover sheet)


Presentations and Events by Dr. Epstein

2008 Presentations

March 30                      Losing the War on Cancer:  How to Reduce Your


                                    Ethical Humanist Society of Chicago

                                    7574 North Lincoln Avenue, Skokie, Illinois

                                    10:30 a.m.; Free and Open to the Public




2007 Presentations

June 1-3                Beyond Pesticides

                              25th National Pesticides Forum

                             "Changing Course in a Changing Climate:

                              Solutions for Health and the Environment"

                              Chicago, Illinois

                              Loyola University (Watertower Campus)

                              Dr. Epstein is the 2007 Dragonfly Award Recipient



2006 Presentations

October 21           Healthy House Fair

                             DePaul University

                             Chicago, Illinois


June 9-11              Keynote Speaker

                              People and the Planet Conference

                              Ottawa, Ontario, Canada


April 10 & 11         BioETHICS Conference

                              Chicago, Illinois

                              Hazards of rBGH Milk, and Hormones in Meat

                              See for further details.


March 2                  UNIS-UN Student Conference

                               New York, New York

                               The Role of Socially Responsible Corporations in

                                    Winning the Losing Cancer War


January 25-27     27th Annual World Congress on Corporate Governance

                               The Hamilton Convention Center, Hamilton, Ontario


                               Title:  Grass Roots Initiatives for Corporate

                               Social Responsibility



2005 Presentations


October 20-21   Neways Ireland Convention

                           Dublin, Ireland


September 3   Keynote Speaker 

                       Cancer-Gate:  How to Win the Losing Cancer War

                       Cancer Control Society Annual Cancer Convention

                       The Sheraton Universal

                       Universal City, California


June 10    Acceptance speech, Cancer-Gate: How to

                 Win the Losing Cancer War, for Albert Schweitzer

                 Golden Grand Medal for Humanitarianism

                 International Symposium of the Polish Academy of Medicine

                 Royal Castle

                 Warsaw, Poland

May 1        Scientific Research Needs & Strategies Panel

                  All Things Organic Conference & Trade Show

                 (April 30 - May 3)

                  McCormick Place, Chicago



 March 4      Keynote Speaker

                   The Public Interest Environmental Law Conference

                   University of Oregon School of Law - Eugene



2004 Presentations

May 7           Keynote Speaker

                     International Colloquium "Cancer, Environment & Society"

                     Paris, France



2003 Presentations

August 30      Keynote Speaker

                      Cancer Control Society

                      Los Angeles, CA


April 28         Strategy Meeting

                     Stop Cancer Before It Starts Campaign

                     Washington, D.C.


February 20       Press Conference

                          Stop Cancer Before It Starts Campaign

                          Washington, D.C.

2002 Presentations
August 30-31  Keynote Address:  Survival in a Polluted World:  How To Do It
Third International Conference, Health Trends 2002
Danish Society Orthomolecular Medicine
Copenhagen, Denmark
July 20 Keynote Speaker
Consumer Products Safety
Unreasonable Risk from Mainstream Industry Cosmetics and Toiletries
Kobe, Japan
June 14-15  Keynote Speaker
Consumer Products Safety
Honolulu, Hawaii
June 5-6  Keynote Speaker
People and the Planet:  Changing Values for a    Sustainable Future
Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario
March 6    University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health
Legislative Proposals for Reversing the Cancer Epidemic
January 25 Keynote Speaker
Consumer Product Safety
Unreasonable Risk from Mainstream Industry Cosmetics and Toiletries

2001 Presentations

October 11:  Keynote Speaker
Eyes Wide Open: A Breast Cancer and the Environment Conference
Women's Health Care Centre Petersborough, Ontario
June 15 Symposium on Food Irradiation
UIC College of Pharmacy
April 27-29:  Press Freedom Conference and Alternative News Media Expo
San Francisco State University
Keynote Speech: The War Against Cancer - A Paradigm Failed and What To Do About It
Panelist: Environment, Technology and Health - What Corporate Media Doesn't Report
February 15:  Panelist on Chicago Tonight, WTTW Channel 11, Chicago; topic Mad Cow Disease
February 15:  Panelist on the Effects of Biotechnology in Food and Agriculture; Public Health Hazards of Genetically Engineered (rBGH) Milk; Environmental Student Group (SEED) at Northwestern University Norris Center, Evanston, Illinois
February 16:  Panelist on the Public Health Hazards of Genetically Engineered (rBGH) Milk; Genetic Engineering Action Network (GEAN), Public Forum, Apparel Center, Merchandise Mart, Chicago

2000 Presentations

October 23:  Keynote Speech: "The Politics of Cancer, 2000", San Francisco Bay Chapter, Berkeley, California
October 23:  Keynote Speech: "The Politics of Cancer, 2000", National Sierra Club, San Francisco, California
October 22:  Panelist: "Breast Cancer Roundtable", Exploratorium, San Francisco, California
October 22:  Workshop: "Preventing Breast Cancer", Bioneers 2000 Convention, Marin Center, San Rafael, California
October 21:  Workshop: "Safe as Milk: ?rBGH", Bioneers 2000 Convention, Marin Center, San Rafael, California
October 14:  Keynote Speaker: "Breast Cancer: The Dirty Dozen Avoidable Risk Factors", Windsor Regional Hospital, Windsor, Ontario Canada
September 26:  Keynote Speaker: "Losing the War against Cancer: Who's Responsible and what to do about it", Nutrition for Optimal Health Association, Chicago, Illinois
September 16:  Speech: "Carcinogenic Hazards of Mainstream Industry Personal Care and Cosmetics Products: The Need for Safe Non-Mainstream Alternatives", Japanese National Convention, Narita, Japan
September 8: 

Speech: "Cancer is Predominantly an Environmentally Induced Disease", European Commission, International Hippokrates Foundation, Kos, Greece
May 19:  Plenary Presentation: "Losing the Winnable War against Cancer: A Paradigm of Democratic Subversion", Conference, Re-Imagining Politics & Society at the Millennium, New York Open Center, Riverside Church, New York, New York
May 18:  Workshop: "Citizen Strategies for Reducing Avoidable Risks for Cancer", Re-Imagining Politics & Society at the Millennium, New York Open Center, Riverside Church, New York, New York
April 23:  Keynote Speech: "How to Win the Losing War Against Cancer", Earth Day 2000, Chicago Cultural Center, Chicago, Illinois
April 12:  Project Censored Award (aka "Alternative Pulitzer Prize" for Investigative Journalism) "Failure of the U.S. Media to Cover Important Medical Issues: Need for an Alternative Press", Fordham University, New York, New York
April 7:  Briefing: "Undisclosed Hazards: Beef Hormones and rBGH Milk", U.K. Parliament Select Committee on Agriculture, Chicago, Illinois
February 17: Keynote Speaker: "Losing the Winnable War Against Cancer: Who's Responsible and Proposed Initiatives", National Silver Haired Congress, Alexandria, Virginia
February 11:  Keynote Speaker: "The Public Health Hazards of Monsanto's Genetically Engineered Milk", Vermont Law School's National Lawyers Guild Conference, Royalton, Maine
January 15:  Speech: "The Role of the Marketplace in Preventing Risks of Cancer from Mainstream Industry Consumer Products", Neways International Convention, Prague, Czech Republic

Honors and Awards to Samuel S. Epstein, M.D.

Dragofly Award from Beyond Pesticides

June 1, 2007

Albert Schweitzer Golden Grand Medal for Humanitarianism, the degree of Doctor Honoris Causa in Humanities, and Honorary Membership of the Polish Academy of Medicine.

June 10, 2005.

Project Censored 2000 Award (better known as the "Alternative Pulitzer Prize") for Investigative Journalism for an article critiquing the American Cancer Society.

The 1999 Bioneers Annual Award.

The Right Livelihood Award (better known as "The Alternative Nobel Prize") for international contributions to cancer prevention, 1998.

American College for Advancement in Medicine, Annual Clarke Lecture Award, San Diego, California, 11/5/94.

Richard Jones Memorial Lecture Award, University of Tasmania, Australia 3/25/93.

Life-Time Achievement Award, National Coalition Against the Misuse of Pesticides, 3/16/91.

Environmental Justice Award, Citizen's Clearinghouse for Hazardous Wastes Inc, August 1989.

Harold Levine Memorial Lecture Award, Chicago Lung Association, 2/8/85.

Robert van den Bosch Memorial Lecture and Medal, University of California, Berkeley, 11/12/83.

Doctor of Humane Letters, Northeastern Illinois University, Chicago, Illinois 5/15/83.

Henry J. Kaiser Visiting Lectureship Award, "New Perspectives on Health," Institute for Social and Policy Studies, Yale University, December 1981.

Notable Book Award, "The Politics of Cancer," American Library Association, February 1979

National Conservation Award, National Wildlife Federation, 3/26/77

Society of Toxicology, Achievement Award, 1969.

Military Awards in Royal Army Medical Corps, 1953

Montefiore Gold Medal in Tropical Medicine; Montefiore Prize in Tropical Medicine; Ranald Martin Prize in Military Surgery

Scientific Publications by Samuel S. Epstein

Losing the Cancer War
Avoidable Exposures
Work & Environment
Avoidable Cancers
Publications and Resources
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