Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center Announces New Dr. Charles M. Smith Chief of Physics

BATON ROUGE, La. – Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center has announced that Sotirios Stathakis, PhD, will serve as the organization’s new Dr. Charles M. Smith chief of physics. Stathakis will oversee the overall management and oversight of the Cancer Center’s physics and dosimetry teams, in support of clinical, research and educational activities.

015Having most recently served as the associate chief of medical physics at the University of Texas Health San Antonio, Mays Cancer Center, an NCI-Designated cancer center, Stathakis brings an enormous wealth of knowledge and experience to Mary Bird Perkins. He has over twenty years of global experience working as a radiation oncology physicist. He obtained his bachelors of science in honors physics from the University of Waterloo in Canada, a master’s of science degree in medical physics from the Medical Physics and Bio-Engineering Department at the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, UK, and a PhD in medical physics from the University of Patras, Hellas Greece. Stathakis also earned a business certificate from the University of Texas San Antonio Business School.

“We are excited to have Dr. Stathakis join us here at Mary Bird Perkins,” said Jonas Fontenot, PhD, MBA, president and chief executive officer, Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center. “The addition of Dr. Stathakis is the latest example of Mary Bird Perkins’ commitment to the highest standards of cancer care and a testament to our ability to attract some of the most talented scientists, oncology providers and specialists from premier academic cancer programs across the country. The work of Dr. Stathakis and his team will bring new and exciting advances to our organization and accelerate our efforts bring the latest technologies, programs, and expertise to more patients across the Gulf South.”

As the Dr. Charles M. Smith chief of physics, Stathakis will oversee his team’s efforts in providing advanced clinical care, lead research that improves treatment outcomes for patients, and will work to train our region’s next generation of medical physicists.

Since 2004, the Cancer Center has collaborated with Louisiana State University (LSU) to operate a nationally-recognized graduate education program in medical physics, known as the Dr. Charles M. Smith Medical Physics Program. The medical physics team consists of over 10 board-certified medical physicists who support the Center through clinical service, research, and education in various locations throughout Louisiana and Southwest Mississippi. The joint program received its name from the late Dr. Charles M. Smith, M.D., of Sulphur, La. – a beloved family medicine practitioner who devoted his career to helping Louisiana families. In 2021, his estate bestowed a gift of $7.8 million to further Mary Bird Perkins’ medical physics program.

“I want to thank Dr. Fontenot and the entire Mary Bird Perkins team for their warm welcome,” said Stathakis. “Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center has a strong reputation for providing high-quality, compassionate care that incorporates leading-edge technology and innovation. I look forward to lending my experience toward furthering Dr. Charles M. Smith’s legacy and strengthening Mary Bird’s mission: to improve survivorship and lessen the burden of cancer through expert treatment, compassionate care, early detection, research and education.”

To learn more about Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center and its world-class medical physics program, visit


About Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center
Mary Bird Perkins Cancer Center is a regional cancer care organization that has been fighting cancer for more than 50 years. The cancer care organization provides care at 10 centers in Baton Rouge, Covington, Gonzales, Hammond, Houma, Opelousas, Slidell, and Natchez, Mississippi, and its service area encompasses southeast Louisiana and southwest Mississippi regions. Mary Bird Perkins has a strategic affiliation with OneOncology and the largest radiation and medical oncology groups from across the area including exclusive partnerships with Southeastern Louisiana Radiation Oncology Group, which provides radiation therapy throughout Mary Bird Perkins’ service areas, Northshore Oncology Associates, serving St. Tammany and Washington Parishes, specifically the communities of Covington and Slidell and Louisiana Hematology Oncology Associates, which services the Greater Baton Rouge area. For more information, please visit