Newswise — New Brunswick, N.J., July 13, 2021 –Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey Director Steven K. Libutti, MD, FACS, who is also senior vice president of oncology services at RWJBarnabas Health and vice chancellor for cancer programs for Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences, has been named by the business journal NJBIZ as a 2021 Healthcare Hero in the healthcare professional category. 

The Healthcare Heroes awards program was created by NJBIZ in an effort to recognize excellence, promote innovation and honor the efforts of individuals and organizations making a significant impact on the quality of health care in New Jersey.  Nominees are evaluated by a panel of independent judges and winners are recognized across 12 categories for their significant impacts on the health care industry and landscape in the state. Categories include: education (individual and organization); health care professional; innovation hero (individual and organization); long term care facilities; nurse of the year; physician of the year; public health hero (individual and organization); volunteer of the year and workplace wellness hero.

As Director of the state’s only National Cancer Institute–designated Comprehensive Cancer Center, Dr. Libutti is committed to enhancing the delivery of high-quality, state-of-the-art cancer care throughout New Jersey and beyond. “I am honored to have been chosen as a 2021 Healthcare Hero during this pivotal time in healthcare, said Libutti. “It has been my privilege to further advance the mission of Rutgers Cancer Institute and RWJBarnabas Health to continue to provide and expand outstanding cancer services especially during this unprecedented time.”

Dr. Libutti is a distinguished physician, researcher, administrator and surgical oncologist, who has made significant contributions in the field of oncology. His dual posts strengthen the successful partnership between RWJBarnabas Health and Rutgers University, ensuring the integration of the clinical and research missions of Rutgers Cancer Institute and RWJBarnabas Health. Libutti implements a unique vision to position Rutgers Cancer Institute as one of the top National Cancer Institute-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers in the country as well as expand its impact throughout the RWJBarnabas Health system and the State of New Jersey.

Through this vision, construction is currently underway to build a new cancer pavilion featuring outpatient and inpatient services coupled with research laboratories, retail space, ancillary services and space devoted to patient education and wellness. Slated to open in 2024, the Jack and Sheryl Morris Cancer Center will be New Jersey’s first freestanding cancer hospital. Dr. Libutti also spearheaded and is leading the New Jersey Statewide Cancer Programs Collaboration, a taskforce implemented in the early days of the coronavirus pandemic to address oncology-related issues and needs across New Jersey.

Libutti graduated magna cum laude from Harvard College and earned his medical degree from Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons. He completed his residency at New York Presbyterian Hospital and his fellowship at the National Cancer Iinstitute. He has published more than 300 peer-reviewed articles, is Editor-in-Chief Emeritus of the Nature Journal Cancer Gene Therapy and holds 11 U.S. patents.  He is also a Professor of Surgery at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and an Affiliated Distinguished Professor in Genetics at Rutgers School of Arts and Sciences.

NJBIZ will hold a virtual Healthcare Heroes recognition event on August 24, 2021 at 8:30 AM.  To see the full list of the 2021 Healthcare Hero recipients and learn how to register for the event, visit: