Community Action Council

Our Mission

Partnering with the MCW Cancer Center, the Community Action Council (CAC) aims to address cancer disparities in eastern Wisconsin through authentic community engagement and research in cancer prevention, screening, diagnosis, treatment and survivorship.

Learn more about cancer in eastern Wisconsin

An important goal of the MCW Cancer Center is to identify and address cancer disparities and the cancer prevention and control needs of our catchment area. To fulfill this goal, the Cancer Center developed the Community Action Council (CAC) — an essential link between the Cancer Center and the community. The CAC also consults Cancer Center leadership regarding actions and approaches to address the cancer burden faced by those living in eastern Wisconsin via the equitable and consistent exchange of information and ideas.

CAC Meetings, Documents and Accomplishments

The CAC is a group of dedicated community, academic, and non-profit leaders committed to eliminating the unacceptable burden of cancer health disparities in our catchment area. After learning that African Americans in the 29 counties we serve in Wisconsin develop cancer at much higher rates, and are much more likely to die from cancers, the CAC acted to better understand and address these inequities. The CAC drives, guides, and participates in community-engaged research, cancer prevention and control activities, as well as clinical care efforts that have a major impact on the improved health of the people we serve.

Upcoming Meetings and Events
Quarterly CAC Meetings
Jan - April - July - Oct
Fourth Tuesday, 1-2:20 p.m.

CAC Leadership Meeting
Jan - Dec
Second Tuesdays, 10-11 a.m., MCW Cancer Center, Room C5318
Projects and Accomplishments

MCW Cancer Center CAC Receives BizTimes Healthcare Heroes Award!

In Process CAC Projects, Events, and Accomplishments:

  • Summer Internship in Cancer Disparities, ongoing with partner Milwaukee Area Health Education Center
  • Cancer Navigator position to address minority participation in clinical trials, jointly funded with the American Cancer Society (ACS)
  • ACS Kohl's Healthy Families Award for High School Cancer Prevention Project (Awarded April 2015 - present)
  • Phyllis Holder, member of MCW Cancer Center Scientific Review Committee since (July 2015 - present)

Completed CAC Projects, Events, and Accomplishments:

  • 25 Summer Internships in Cancer Disparities (2015-2019)
  • Greater Milwaukee Foundation Racial Equity & Inclusion in Cancer Disparities Grant Awards (Fall 2015)
  • Community Engagement Core Grant Awarded to CAC member Mikel Holt and MCW professor Ryan Spellecy to study disparities in cancer clinical research participation
  • Nine Community Conversations to Date:
    1. Henrietta Lacks: An Immortal Life Without Consent with Body & Soul Healing Arts Center
    2. Tuskegee: Yesterday…Today…Tomorrow with Destiny Center
    3. Empower You
    4. Share the Care Talking Circles with Pink Shawl and SEOTS
    5. Break the Disparity with the Milwaukee LGBT Community Center
    6. Talk with a Doc at the FELLAS 5K Walk
    7. Cancer Center & CAC Open House with Sherman Phoenix
    8. Understanding Clinical Research Disparities with the Wisconsin Black Historical Society
    9. Cancer Health & the LGBTQ+ Community (July 2018)
    10. Cancer Disparities...Road and Root with America's Black Holocaust Museum (September 2019)
    11. Vida y Esperanza: Hispanic and Latino Survivor Celebration (September 2019)
  • CAC Operating Guidelines developed and approved (October 2016)
  • Conversations with Scientists Cancer 101 (April-May 2016)
  • Cancer Moonshot Summit and Recommendations (June 2016)
  • Full board retreats and working sessions (2015, 2017, 2019)