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Interim Title Dropped as Aaron Schilz, MPA, Named Masonic Cancer Center’s Executive Director

MINNEAPOLIS - May 23, 2022 - Aaron Schilz has been appointed as the Executive Director for the Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota. He was previously named the Interim Executive Director in August of last year. He has been with the center for almost 15 years, previously serving as the center’s Assistant Director for Administration. Schilz was selected following a national search that produced external and internal candidates.

“I’m pleased that Aaron has accepted this key position in the Masonic Cancer Center,” said Dr. Douglas Yee, Director of the Masonic Cancer Center. “His experience with us makes him the ideal person to lead us through our next renewal and beyond. He is currently spearheading our strategic planning process which will serve as our roadmap for the next several years.”

Mr. Schilz will lead the Masonic Cancer Center through the next National Cancer Institute Cancer Center Support Grant (CCSG) renewal. He played a key role in the submission process of the Masonic Cancer Center’s previous four CCSG renewal submissions, including the last renewal in 2018 when the center received its highest score to date, ‘Outstanding.’ The NCI has 52 NCI-Designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers across the nation. Since 1998, the Masonic Cancer Center has been the only one in the Twin Cities and continues to be a national leader in cancer research and patient care.

“The Masonic Cancer Center has a long legacy of driving new discoveries, reducing the cancer burden in Minnesota and beyond, accelerating the path to cures, and enabling cancer research excellence by bringing together cancer researchers from all over the University, the state of Minnesota and around the world,” noted Mr. Schilz. “Seeing the impact that this research has on people’s lives is one of the most inspirational and motivating experiences I’ve had in my life. I am humbled and incredibly grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the Masonic Cancer Center story. I consider myself very lucky and excited to lead such a fantastic team, and I look forward to learning from all of the wonderful people who have contributed to this center’s success over the past 30 years.”

Mr. Schilz, whose appointment became official on May 9th, has been a key member of the center’s administrative leadership team for seven years and brings extensive grants administration and research operations experience to the position. He is widely regarded as a national expert in cancer center administration and has consulted for many other NCI-designated cancer centers, advising on data collection and management, strategic planning, CCSG strategy and planning, and shared resource management.

Mr. Schilz received his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in German and International Studies before receiving his Master of Public Affairs, with a focus on nonprofit management and leadership, from the University of Minnesota’s Humphrey School for Public Affairs.

Mr. Schilz is a familiar face in the Masonic Cancer Center community, and you can often see him biking to the office, kayaking the Minneapolis Chain of Lakes, and spending time with his wife, Julie, and their two children, Jane and Henry.

About the Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota
The Masonic Cancer Center, University of Minnesota, is the Twin Cities’ only Comprehensive Cancer Center, designated ‘Outstanding’ by the National Cancer Institute. As Minnesota’s Cancer Center, we have served the entire state for more than 30 years. Our researchers, educators, and care providers have worked to discover the causes, prevention, detection, and treatment of cancer and cancer-related diseases. Learn more at