Stephenson Cancer Center Urologist Elected to National Leadership Role

OKLAHOMA CITY – Urologic oncologist Michael Cookson, M.D., MMHC, FACS, was recently elected president of the Society of Urologic Oncology.

Cookson is chairman of the Department of Urology at the University of Oklahoma College of Medicine and holds the Donald D. Albers Endowed Chair in urology. He sees urologic cancer patients at Stephenson Cancer Center at OU Health. He was installed in his new role at the Society’s annual meeting December 3, in Washington, D.C., and will serve a one-year term.

“I am indeed honored to lead one of the most significant international organizations that advocates for urologic cancer care,” said Cookson. “SUO strives to bring together distinguished experts whose work is entirely or primarily focused on malignant diseases of the urinary tract that include prostate and bladder cancer. In this way, we harness our experience and expertise to conquer urologic cancers.”

As an organization, SUO offers members a forum for discussion, development and implementation of ideas to improve care for patients with malignant genitourinary diseases. Key objectives are to stimulate research and teaching in urologic oncology, disseminate principles of urologic oncology to the medical profession at large and to standardize fellowship training in urologic oncology.

In addition, Cookson said SUO is spearheading efforts with the American Board of Urology to develop a new Focus Practice Designation in Urologic Oncology for those physicians immersed in the care of urologic cancer patients. “The goal of this initiative will be to allow patients to identify doctors who are experts in the field with the ultimate goal of improving patient outcomes for those diagnosed with prostate and urologic cancers.”


Stephenson Cancer Center at OU Health ranks in the Top 50 in the nation for cancer care in the 2019-2020 U.S. News & World Report rankings. As Oklahoma’s only National Cancer Institute-Designated Cancer Center, Stephenson Cancer Center is one of the nation’s elite centers, representing the top 2% of cancer centers in the country. It is the largest and most comprehensive oncology practice in the state, delivering patient-centered, multidisciplinary care for every type of cancer. As one of the nation’s leading research organizations, Stephenson Cancer Center uses the latest innovations to fight and eliminate cancer, and is currently ranked No. 1 among all cancer centers in the nation for the number of patients participating in clinical trials sponsored by the NCI’s National Clinical Trials Network. For more information, visit


OU Health — along with its academic partner, the University of Oklahoma Health Sciences Center — is the state’s only comprehensive academic health system of hospitals, clinics and centers of excellence. With 11,000 employees and more than 1,300 physicians and advanced practice providers, OU Health is home to Oklahoma’s largest physician network with a complete range of specialty care. OU Health serves Oklahoma and the region with the state’s only freestanding children’s hospital, the only National Cancer Institute-Designated Stephenson Cancer Center and Oklahoma’s flagship hospital, which serves as the state’s only Level 1 trauma center. OU Health is the No. 1 ranked hospital system in Oklahoma, and its oncology program at Stephenson Cancer Center and OU Medical Center ranked in the Top 50 in the nation, in the 2019-2020 rankings released by U.S. News & World Report. OU Health was also ranked by U.S. News & World Report as high performing in four specialties: Ophthalmology in partnership with Dean McGee Eye Institute, Colon Surgery, COPD and Congestive Heart Failure. OU Health’s mission is to lead healthcare in patient care, education and research. To learn more, visit