Robert Penny, MD, Ph.D.

CEO, International Genomics Consortium

Dr. Penny is the CEO of the International Genomics Consortium and also serves as a board member and its Chief Medical Officer. He has leadership roles in the Cancer Genome Atlas project (TCGA) as the Principal Investigator for the Biospecimen Core Resource (BCR) and for TCGA’s Tissue Source Site network.  He has created a world-class biorepository at IGC through their expression project for Oncology (expO), which is characterized both clinically with treatment and outcome data as well as molecularly.  He has historical competencies in tissue and data standards to complement the high quality biospecimens that he has accrued.

Dr. Penny is one of the Founders, CEO and a board member of Paradigm, a new cutting-edge advanced diagnostics company that is bringing next generation sequencing and other technologies to personalized medicine. The company is locatied in Phoenix and Ann Arbor.

While at the IGC, he founded the Molecular Profiling Institute and served as its Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board. The Molecular Profiling Institute is the first company to commercially introduce gene expression analysis into oncology in the U.S. He developed the Molecular Profiling Institute’s portfolio of molecular testing and pharmaceutical services which includes his successful commercially available holistic genomic analysis of cancer with its award-winning surgical oncology report (Target Now). He led the successful merger of the Molecular Profiling Institute into Caris Life Sciences.

Dr. Penny is a recognized expert in the translation of diagnostics into patient care as well as in biorepositories. He has established two national esoteric reference medical laboratories, a national tissue bank and analysis center, and a national genomics program. He has helped bring cellular and molecular diagnostic, prognostic and therapeutic testing to patient care throughout the nation with leukemia, lymphoma and solid tumors. He has headed up genomic strategies for one of the nation’s largest medical diagnostic corporations and chaired committees for TCGA leadership. 

In September, Dr. Penny received the College of American Pathologists’ 2012 Distinguished Patient Care Award. The College of American Pathologists honored Dr. Penny for his extensive scientific translational research to accelerate the adoption of molecular pathways and associated therapies into the field of pathology and oncology to improve the lives of cancer patients.  In 2011, the AZ BioIndustry Association honored Dr. Penny with the Jon W. McGarity Leadership Award for his vision in advancing cancer personalized medicine and success in leading the industry.

Dr. Penny received his B.S., M.S., Ph.D. (Genetics) and M.D. from the University of Arizona and then went on to receive his pathology training at Harvard’s Brigham & Women’s Hospital in Boston, Massachusetts, where he served as Chief Resident and completed fellowships in hematopathology and surgical pathology. Dr. Penny currently is an associate professor at the University of Michigan. Dr. Penny’s contributions include a textbook in oncology, publication of articles and leadership roles in laboratory management.