Week 2 2021
Kathleen R. Blazer, EdD, MS, CGC
Assistant Professor, Director Cancer Genomics Education Program
Kathleen R. Blazer is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Population Sciences, Director of the Cancer Genomics Education Program (CGEP), and a bilingual licensed, board-certified cancer risk genetic counselor with the Division of Clinical Cancer Genetics at City of Hope. Dr. Blazer has worked with Co-Principle Investigator Dr. Jeffery Weitzel in the development, administration and assessment of the National Cancer Institute-funded initiatives of the CGEP (a multifaceted cancer genetics education and training program for physicians, allied health care professionals and post-doctoral researchers) since joining the division in 1998. She has first-authored a number of peer-reviewed publications reporting the development and outcomes of the professional education and training research activities conducted by the CGEP. Her doctorate in education research worked within the setting of the CGEP to examine the effectiveness of distance-mediated approaches to cancer genetics training. The outcomes and theoretical framework of her dissertation research serve as the cornerstone of the Intensive Course and Clinical Cancer Genomics Community of Practice (CCGCoP), which brings cancer genetics practitioners from diverse practice settings together for professional learning, enduring patient-centered support and community-based research collaborations across the U.S. and internationally. Drs. Blazer and Weitzel were co-recipients of the 2019 American Society of Human Genetics Arno Motulsky-Barton Childs Award for Excellence in Human Genetics Education in recognition of the scope and reach of their education initiatives. Dr. Blazer is a member of the American Society of Human Genetics, the National Society of Genetic Counselors, the American Association of Cancer Education, and the National Human Genome Research Institute Inter-Society Coordinating Committee for Practitioner Education in Genomics.
Charité Ricker, MS, CGC
Cancer Genetic Counselor And Genetic Services Coordinator
Charité Ricker, MS, LCGC - is a board certified genetic counselor with specialization in hereditary cancer risk assessment with the University of Southern California, Keck School of Medicine. She has a Bachelor’s of Science in genetics from Texas A&M University and received her Masters of Science in genetic counseling at California State University, Northridge. Ms. Ricker is fluent in Spanish and is interested in the provision of cancer genetics services in medically underserved and culturally diverse populations. She is actively involved in cancer genetics education to physicians, physician fellows, nurses, other healthcare professionals and patients. Ms. Ricker is a voting member of the Institutional Review Board for the USC Health Science Campus, LAC+USC Medical Center and Health Research Association. Ms. Ricker is a member of the National Society of Genetic Counselors (NSGC), the Collaborative Group of the Americas on Inherited Colorectal Cancer (CGA), the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO), and the Society of Behavioral Medicine (SBM). She has served as the chair of the NSGC Cultural Competency Sub-committee and as a member of the ASCO Genetics Sub-committee. She was the 2019 recipient of the NSGC’s Leader in Cultural Advocacy Award.
Bita Nehoray, MS, CGC
Bita Nehoray, MS, CGC, is a licensed board-certified genetic counselor specializing in cancer genetics. She received her Master’s degree in Human Genetics and Genetic Counseling from Stanford University. Ms. Nehoray joined the City of Hope Division of Clinical Cancer Genomics in 2012, where she provides cancer genetics services for patients and families suspected to have a hereditary predisposition to cancer, with a focus in Li-Fraumeni syndrome. She is fluent in Spanish and Farsi, and is committed to advancing the provision of cancer genetics services to medically underserved and culturally diverse populations. Other clinical responsibilities include providing pro-bono cancer genetic counseling services to underserved Latino families through an outreach program established by the Division of Clinical Cancer Genomics and supported through government and foundations grants and compassionate funding. Current research projects include understanding cancer risk, penetrance, prevalence, and clinical outcomes for individuals with TP53 mutations as part of the LiFT Up study, evaluating the spectrum of germline variants in Israeli breast cancer patients, and assessing Community-based provider experiences with polygenic risk scores in genetic cancer risk assessment. Her past research included assessing the influence of pre-consultative interventions in the uptake of genetic counseling services in Latinas. She also serves on the Genetic Counseling Advisory Committee for the Li-Fraumeni Syndrome Association. She is an active member of the National Society of Genetic Counselors, Southern California genetic counselors, and the American Society of Human Genetics.