My Report Card

Margaret Tempero
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Every summer, I spend some anxious days waiting for my “report card” for JNCCN. When I assumed the role of Editor-in-Chief in 2014, I felt I would be successful if submissions increased, the quality of the submissions improved, and, as a result, the impact factor climbed. So far, so good! All of these things have come to pass, and this June we received the news that our impact factor rose yet again, reaching 12.693. Hooray!

Another decision we made at the beginning of my tenure was to create a focus for original research in the journal. With the help of the entire editorial team, we decided to shift our focus from studies of cancer therapies to research on symptom management, health services, outcomes, healthcare policy, and quality improvement. We elected to retain the focus on the NCCN Guidelines, NCCN’s most precious product, and we added a feature on molecular insights in patient care. I think those were good decisions at the time.

We also created an Executive Editorial Board to help advise us on day-to-day decisions, especially for editorial content such as commentaries. I am enormously grateful to my Associate Editors who take time out of their very busy schedules to evaluate and critique commentaries and special features, as well as provide feedback on original research that receives disparate reviews.

As with all teams, transition happens. We are experiencing changes in our Executive Editorial Board for several reasons, and this gives me a special opportunity to thank the outgoing members publicly. Last year, Ticiana Leal took a new post at Emory University as Director of the Thoracic Medical Oncology Program, but she served out the remainder of her term. Jeffrey Peppercorn became the new Editor-in-Chief of JCO Oncology Practice, resigning his position on our board to avoid conflict of interest. Oxana Palesh has accepted a leadership position at the Virginia Commonwealth University, an institution that is not yet a member of NCCN.

We are truly grateful to these valued members for their efforts and wise counsel, and wish them the best of luck. We are currently in the process of selecting new Associate Editors to fill these open positions. Happily, we have received an ample number of excellent nominations for consideration.

I also think, after 8 years, we should do some strategic planning again. We need to review our focus on content and determine whether we should sharpen or relax it. Should we add features and/or remove some? And what about strategies to attract impactful articles and/or bring more attention to those we publish? All these considerations need thoughtful attention.

I am also interested in your thoughts. Don’t hesitate to send me ideas about the journal. Tell me what you value or what you don’t. All constructive criticism is appreciated. After all, we want to see that impact factor continue to climb!


Margaret Tempero, MD, is a Professor of Medicine and Director of the UCSF Pancreas Center and editor-in-chief of JNCCN. Her research career has focused on pancreatic ductal adenocarcinoma, especially in the area of investigational therapeutics. Dr. Tempero has served on the ASCO Board of Directors and as ASCO President. She currently serves on the ASCO Conquer Cancer Foundation Board. She codirected the AACR/ASCO Methods in Clinical Cancer Research and taught this course and similar courses in Europe and Australia. She was founding Chair of the NCI Clinical Oncology Study Section and served as a member and Chair of the NCI Board of Scientific Counselors Subcommittee A. She is a member of the Scientific Steering Committee and Chair of the Clinical and Translational Study Section for the Cancer Prevention & Research Institute of Texas. She is or has been on the Scientific Advisory Boards of the Lustgarten Foundation, the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, the V Foundation, The Alberta Canada Cancer Board, and the EORTC. She served as a member of the Oncology Drug Advisory Committee for the FDA. She has served as Deputy Director and Interim Director for the UNMC Eppley Cancer Center. She is Chief Emeritus of the Division of Medical Oncology at UCSF. She served as the founding Deputy Director and was later Directorof Research Programs at the UCSF Helen Diller Family Comprehensive Cancer Center.

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