Previously published June 20, 2023

ASCO is deeply saddened by the death of A. William Blackstock Jr., MD, FASCO, who served on the Society’s Board of Directors from 2018 to 2022. Dr. Blackstock passed away on June 18, 2023, due to complications from prostate cancer; he was 60.

“We mourn the passing of a friend and colleague who combined wisdom and humor to advance science and cancer care for all. Always, with a knowing twinkle in his eye, he would share the one story or ask the key question that clarified the issue at hand and helped everyone see the solution with absolute clarity,” said ASCO CEO Clifford A. Hudis, MD, FACP, FASCO. 

At the time of his passing, Dr. Blackstock was chair of and a professor in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Atrium Health Wake Forest Baptist; colleagues and loved ones noted that he was one of the first African American chairs in the field. He was active in clinical research, both within the cooperative group system and at his institution. 

In addition to his service on the ASCO Board of Directors, Dr. Blackstock was a dedicated volunteer from the time he joined the Society in 1999. He served on the Grants Selection Committee, the Cancer Communications Committee, the Health Disparities Advisory Group, on the editorial board of the Journal of Clinical Oncology, as track leader for the ASCO Annual Meeting Program Committee, and as chair of the Membership Committee, among numerous roles. A committed mentor, he participated in mock interviews to support trainee and early-career oncologists. During his tenure on the Board of Directors, Dr. Blackstock was the Board liaison to the Health Equity Committee. At the time of his passing, he served on the Joint Special Awards Selection Committee. He was honored for his volunteer contributions with the Fellow of ASCO (FASCO) designation in 2018. 

Read more in ASCO Connection.