- The Washington Times - Saturday, September 15, 2007

Martin Abeloff, 65, Center director

BALTIMORE (AP) — Dr. Martin Abeloff, who guided Johns Hopkins University’s Kimmel Cancer Center through a period of rapid growth, died Sept. 14 at age 65, a spokeswoman for the center said.

Dr. Abeloff, who led the center for 15 years, had been battling leukemia, said Vanessa Wasta, a spokeswoman for the cancer center. Dr. Abeloff was the second director of the center, following Dr. Albert Owens Jr., who founded what was then called the Johns Hopkins Oncology Center.

“Marty was that iconic Hopkins physician, scientist, educator, leader and good citizen rolled into one,” said Dr. Edward D. Miller, dean and chief executive officer of Johns Hopkins Medicine. “He was there for his patients, his residents and fellows, his colleagues and at so many challenging times, the institution he graced for so long.”

Dr. Abeloff, a 1966 graduate of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, was also known for his work in developing solid tumor clinical-research programs.

Dr. Abeloff joined the faculty of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 1972 and served as chairman of the Food and Drug Administration’s Oncology Drug Advisory Committee.

During his tenure, the cancer center’s faculty doubled, research funding increased sixfold and the cancer complex at Johns Hopkins expanded to nearly 1 million square feet of space for treatment and research.

“Marty built an impressive and unparalleled team of cancer experts and a world-class reputation for the Kimmel Cancer Center,” Dr. Miller said.

Dr. Stephen Baylin, the center’s deputy director, said Dr. Abeloff was the ultimate role model who transformed cancer treatment and care delivery.

“What he didn’t know, he took the time to learn,” Dr. Baylin said.

Dr. Abeloff, born in Shenandoah, Pa., is survived by his wife, Diane, a medical illustrator; daughters Elisa Abeloff and her husband, George Landau, and Jennifer Abeloff and her husband, Howard Wasserman; three grandchildren; and his sister and brother-in-law, Marilyn and Morrell Fox.

Funeral services are scheduled for tomorrow in Reisterstown, Md.

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