Taylor S. Riall, MD, PhD
Professor, Chief, Division of Surgical Oncology, University of Arizona, Tucson; SSAT Secretary
Old Bridge, NJ
DDW® is celebrating its 50th anniversary. How many of the 50 have you attended, which meeting stands out and why?
Nineteen meetings! I attended my first meeting in 1997 and have attended every meeting since, except 2010 when my mother-in-law passed away and 2017 when I underwent back surgery two weeks before the meeting. The 1997 meeting in Washington, D.C., stands out. I was a postgraduate year one surgical resident and I gave my first oral presentation in a plenary session. To this day, I remember every word of that talk!
Do you think your pet knows you’re away from home?
My dog’s name is Winston. We got him this time last year and I never thought I could love an animal so much. He definitely knows when I’m gone. He knows when the suitcase comes out. He loves his dad, but he’s a mama’s dog!
What’s your favorite thing to do outside of work?
I love to run! I’m a triathlete — I like to swim, too, but I’m always nervous on my bike. I train with my best friend and we just finished a half-Ironman race in Oceanside, California. And I love to run with Winston!
What’s your best advice for navigating DDW?
The meeting is huge and amazing so it’s hard to see everything. Identify the tracks you’re most interested in and plan ahead. Use the DDW Mobile App to know where to go. And wear comfortable shoes — the convention center is long!
How many steps will you take at the meeting?
Depends on if you count my morning runs in San Diego. If so, tens of thousands!
What’s your favorite thing about San Diego?
San Diego is one of my favorite places to run. The weather is almost always nearly perfect running weather for me. It’s likely warm for others, but coming from Tucson, I’m cold if it’s under 75!