March 13, 2020

Don Morris appointed department head, Oncology

Appointment effective Mar. 1, 2020
Don Morris
Don Morris

Alberta Health Services’ (AHS) Calgary Zone, CancerControl Alberta and the University of Calgary’s Cumming School of Medicine (CSM) are pleased to announce the appointment of Dr. Don Morris, MD, PhD, FRCPC, as head of the Department of Oncology, effective Mar. 1, 2020.

With this appointment, Don will assume the role of Calgary Zone clinical department head, Oncology, AHS; facility medical director, Tom Baker Cancer Centre (TBCC); AHS medical lead, Calgary Cancer Project; associate senior medical director, CancerControl Alberta; and department head, Department of Oncology, CSM.

In 1990, Don completed his doctoral degree in immunology at Queen’s University. He went on to receive his medical degree at UCalgary in 1992 and was awarded specialist certification in internal medicine and medical oncology in 1995 and 1997, respectively. In 1997, Don was recruited as an assistant professor in the departments of Oncology and Medicine, and was promoted to professor in 2018.

Since 2013, Don has served as the division head for medical oncology within the CSM’s Department of Oncology and has held various medical leadership positions within AHS, including his current role as the section head for medical oncology within AHS’ Calgary Zone. He is the current chair for the TBCC Biosafety Committee and the medical lead for TBCC Cancer Systemic Therapy. Some of Don’s previous roles include the training program director for medical oncology at the CSM, director of the CSM’s Oncology Postgraduate Training programs, provincial leader of the Thoracic Oncology Tumour Team, and director of the Translational Cancer Laboratories (Precision Oncology Hub).

Don’s research interests include the development of new cancer therapeutics, first in man oncolytic viral clinical trials, immuno-oncology and translational research involving breast and lung cancers. He has been the local site lead for over 45 clinical cancer trials, national chair for multiple clinical trials and has published over 250 peer-reviewed publications and abstracts. He is currently funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and has previously received funding from the tri-council, the United States Department of Defense, Alberta Innovates Health Solutions, and other funding agencies.

Over the past 22 years, Don has made significant academic, service and leadership contributions to AHS’ Clinical Department of Oncology, to CancerControl Alberta and to the CSM’s Department of Oncology. His passion for teaching, mentorship and clinical service makes him an excellent fit for this new role.

Don is the successor to former department head, Dr. Sunil Verma, MD, FRCPC, and interim department head, Dr. Gregory Cairncross, MD, FRCPC. Thank you to Sunil and Greg for their tremendous leadership.  

Please join us in congratulating Don on his new appointment.


Jon Meddings, MD, FRCPC
Dean, Cumming School of Medicine
University of Calgary

Sid Viner, MD, FRCPC
Calgary Zone Medical Director
Alberta Health Services

Matthew Parliament, MD, FRCPC
Senior Medical Director
CancerControl Alberta

Morris, Don

Dr. Don Morris