President, American Cancer Society Cancer Action Network
Daniel E. Smith is the President of the American Cancer Society Cancer Action NetworkSM (ACS CAN), the advocacy and lobbying arm of the world’s largest voluntary health organization dedicated to fighting cancer. Based in Washington, D.C., Smith is responsible for the overall development and execution of legislative, political, and grassroots strategies at the local, state, and federal levels to advance the American Cancer Society’s lifesaving mission priorities. Smith also holds the title of National Vice President for Federal and State Government Relations at the American Cancer Society.
Since joining the Society in 2000, Smith has used his political expertise to build a strong and highly effective grassroots force that is mobilizing people touched by cancer to take action at all levels of government. As the head of the Society’s 501(c)(4) sister organization, Smith has been instrumental in spearheading campaigns that have made Americans healthier and saved lives. He helped launch ACS CAN, leading a new chapter in the war against cancer and giving cancer advocates an avenue to work for laws and policies that provide equal access to cancer screenings, fund crucial cancer research, expand insurance coverage, and enable millions of Americans to live and work in smoke-free environments. During his tenure, the Society and ACS CAN have partnered with other organizations to help make 25 states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico smoke-free.
In addition, Smith founded and leads Once Voice Against Cancer (OVAC), a coalition of more than 40 cancer-related organizations. Since 2000 OVAC has successfully advocated for billions of dollars in funding for cancer research and programs at the National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Center for Minority Health and Health Disparities, and Health Resources Services Administration.
Prior to joining the American Cancer Society, Dan worked for 10 years in the United States Senate, where he held several senior staff positions in the office of Senator Tom Harkin of Iowa, including four years as Chief of Staff, and more than two years as Minority Staff Director for the US Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry. He also has extensive experience in a number of presidential, senatorial, and congressional campaigns including Gore 1988 and Clinton/Gore in 1992.
A native of rural Iowa, Dan grew up on a fourth generation family farm. He graduated from the University of Iowa with the highest distinction and received his law degree from the Georgetown University Law Center in Washington, D.C. In 2004, Smith completed the Executive Development Program at Northwestern University’s Kellogg School of Management.
Smith currently resides in Chevy Chase, Maryland with his wife, Lorraine Voles, and their two children, Ruby and Angus. He is active in community affairs and served as the Mayor of the Village of Drummond, Maryland from 2003-2004.