About CRI

Jill O'Donnell-Tormey, Ph.D.

Chief Executive Officer and Director of Scientific Affairs


Jill O’Donnell-Tormey, Ph.D., is chief executive officer and director of scientific affairs of the Cancer Research Institute (CRI), a nonprofit organization founded in 1953 that is today the global leader in supporting and coordinating research aimed at harnessing the immune system’s power to conquer all cancers. She joined the organization in 1987 as director of scientific affairs, and has been chief executive since 1993.

Dr. O’Donnell-Tormey is a member of the Management Team of the CVC Trials Network, a worldwide network of top clinicians and scientists who share a common passion for cancer immunotherapy clinical research and wish to participate in a collaborative effort to develop more effective combination treatments. This program, which CRI runs jointly with its partner Ludwig Cancer Research, is supported by a venture philanthropy fund that, together with the CVC Trials Network, forms the CRI Clinical Accelerator program, an initiative to hasten development of life-saving combination immunotherapies. 

She serves on the boards of ZERO: The End of Prostate Cancer; CT Atlantic AG, a Swiss biotechnology company focused on the research and development of novel, human-derived antibodies for the treatment of cancer; Richmond University Medical Center; and the Staten Island Foundation. In 1998, she was named one of Irish America magazine’s "Top 100" Irish Americans, and in 2002 she received the Fairleigh Dickinson University Pinnacle Award, the highest honor bestowed on its alumni. She received the Cancer Research Institute’s 2013 Frederick W. Alt Award for New Discoveries in Immunology, which the institute awards to formerly funded postdoctoral fellows who make significant contributions to immunology research.

She holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry, summa cum laude, from Fairleigh Dickinson University, and a doctor of philosophy in cell biology from The State University of New York’s Downstate Medical Center.