Georgia Sadler keeps watch over issues of community health


Dr. Georgia Robins Sadler is clinical professor of surgery at the UCSD School of Medicine and associate director at the Moores UCSD Cancer Center, where she directs the Community Outreach Program for lay and professional communities.

She is the principal investigator of many National Cancer Institute-funded grants focusing on finding ways to reduce the nation’s health disparities and has published more than 200 scientific papers and abstracts in peer-reviewed journals.

Among her volunteer activities, she has been president of the board of directors of the California Division of the American Cancer Society, the San Diego Youth Symphony, and the San Diego and Imperial Counties’ Regional Breast Cancer Early Detection Partnership.

She has been on the board of the Education Network to Advance Cancer Clinical Trials, WellStart International and the California Institute for Health Systems Performance. Sadler is married to Blair Sadler and they have two adult daughters, Noelle and Nicole.

What brought you to the area?

Pure wanderlust! I was a Thouron Fellow for a couple of years at the University of London for my post-graduate studies and loved the experience. There were so many new cultures, cuisines and sites to explore. When my husband was invited to be director of the Scripps Green Hospital, I was thrilled with the opportunity for new adventures on the West Coast.

What makes this town special to you?

We really hadn’t planned to stay for more than a few years in San Diego, but we both fell in love with the rich, multicultural fabric of the West Coast. There’s no place else quite like it.

If you could snap your fingers and have it done, what might you add, subtract or improve in the area?

Continued improvement in our public transportation system throughout the entire state.

Who or what inspires you?

I’m always inspired by people who do good deeds just because they see something that needs to be done. It starts with people who see some trash on the ground and remove it, and goes all the way to people who take on the big volunteer jobs that demand hundreds of hours of work.

If you hosted a dinner party for eight, whom (living or deceased) would you invite?

Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis because she was such an influential role model for teen-age girls of my generation when she became first lady. Queen Victoria because she showed so much vision during her long reign. Sigmund Freud because it would be fun to hear his reaction to how his theories have evolved to present day psychiatry. Alonso Horton because it would be fun to hear his reactions to how San Diego has grown.

Leo Sher, who started the San Diego Youth Symphony in 1945, because I would love to learn if he ever envisioned how successfully his dream would evolve. Amadeus Mozart because it would be fun to talk about whether he ever envisioned that his name would be a household name and his music would be as popular as it is today.

Martin Luther King because I would love to hear him talk about what else we could do to more fully achieve his dream. And, of course, my husband, Blair, because he would never forgive me if I had invited all these people for dinner and he couldn’t come. Plus, what he’d have to say in the presence of these amazing people would be just as interesting as the rest of the guests.

Tell us about what you are currently reading.

I am always reading several books at a time because so many things interest me. Some are work-related books that are fun to read, and others are just for pleasure, like a book Blair gave me about Michelle Obama. My daughter sent me a book I’m reading called “The Power of Unreasonable People.”

What is your most-prized possession?

Certainly not possessions, but very prized are my wonderful extended family and good health.

What do you do for fun?

Travel is always tops on my list. Connected with that is the fun of cooking from the cuisines we’ve explored. Dancing is fun. For one of those “special” birthdays, I asked Blair to take salsa lessons with me. We’re not very good, but we have a lot of fun.

Please describe your greatest accomplishment.

I had the career opportunity to lead the development of the Moores UCSD Cancer Center’s Community Outreach Program and to volunteer in a number of capacities with the American Cancer Society.

What is your motto or philosophy of life?

Follow The Golden Rule.