The Cancer Prevention and Research Institute of Texas (CPRIT) has resumed active funding operations for cancer research in Texas, with news over the past weeks of two new appointees to the organization’s new Oversight Committee, as well as recent grant announcements going to Texas A&M dance researchers — the first in almost a year since the onset of the scandal that sidelined the organization’s funding efforts. Now, the final step in fully re-establishing the organization has been taken, with Texas House Speaker Joe Straus appointing his own member to the Oversight Committee.
Straus has chosen Will Montgomery of Dallas to the Oversight Committee — the third and final appointee required by the new CPRIT reform law. The other two appointees came from both Governor Rick Perry and Lieutenant Governor David Dewhurst, respectively.
Mr. Montgomery is a partner at Jackson Walker LLP, where his practice focuses on commercial litigation and arbitration. However, in recent comments, he expressed a personal stake in helping to steer CPRIT toward success in championing treatments and cures for cancer: “Cancer is a scourge that has touched families throughout Texas, including my own,” Montgomery told DHealthcareDaily. “My father was a cancer researcher, ironically contracting cancer late in his life. My brother recently died of cancer. I am honored to have the opportunity to serve the state and to help accomplish CPRIT’s mission to educate, prevent and discover causes and possible cures for cancer.”
Now that Speaker Straus has made the appointment, the organization has fulfilled all of its obligations for reforming its operational aspects, and will now work toward a resumption of regular funding, as well as a new, robust oversight effort in all application reviews for cancer research.