Samuel L. Washington, III, MD, MAS, Assistant Professor in the Department of Urology, has been appointed the Goldberg-Benioff Endowed Professorship in Cancer Biology. This endowment is supported by Evan and Cindy Goldberg, and Lynne and Mark Benioff, advocates preeminent to prostate cancer research. Mark Benioff is the founder and CEO of Salesforce.com and has paved new paths in information technology. Together the Benioff’s have made significant contributions to UCSF, including a $100 million gift to build the new UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital at Mission Bay, providing a state-of-the-art facility for children who require highly specialized care for life threatening illnesses. Evan Goldberg is the Executive Vice President of Development, Oracle NetSuite Global Business Unit. The Goldberg’s are significant contributors of the Prostate Cancer Research fund and the UCSF BRCA Center, which supports research on BRCA hereditary cancer genes. Funds from this professorship will support Washington’s work in prostate cancer biology and its impact on outcomes of care.
Dr. Washington moved from Texas to California to complete his undergraduate education at University of California, Davis with a Bachelor of Science in Genetics, and a minor in Latin. He completed his medical school training at University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) and completed his urology residency at UCSF. He stayed on at UCSF to complete his urologic oncology fellowship and a Master’s Degree in Clinical Research. Past research grants obtained during his training include the UCSF Academy of Medical Educators and the UCSF Center of Aging in Diverse Communities, through the National Institute of Aging. In July 2020, Dr. Washington joined the department’s faculty as an Assistant Professor-In Residence.
His primary research focuses on understanding racial and ethnic disparities in the diagnosis, management, and treatment of patients with prostate and bladder cancer. Dr. Washington examines how these differences in treatment strategies (based on race and socioeconomic factors) impact survival outcomes. He seeks to expand our knowledge in how variations in care at the local level drive differences in treatment and survival for patients with genitourinary cancers, particularly how much of these variations are attributable to race/ethnicity and socioeconomic factors. “By understanding these local variations in treatment, we can better understand barriers to change at the provider, facility, and healthcare system levels to improve outcomes in genitourinary cancers.”, says Dr. Washington.
“On behalf of the Department of Urology, I would like to express my gratitude to the Lynne and Mark Benioff and to Cindy and Evan Goldberg for their generous support of this professorship,” says Dr. Raj S. Pruthi, Professor and Chair of the Department of Urology. “Endowed professorships, such as this, help us to recruit, to support and to retain the Department of Urology’s most important asset -- its talented faculty. These faculty allow us to be one of the leading urology departments in the world.”