New Logo Has MD Anderson Feeling 'Brand' New

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MD Anderson New logo credit - F Carter SmithThere's no gray area when it comes to MD Anderson's mission. For almost 70 years, it's been all about eliminating cancer in Texas, the nation and the world.

It's a mission that's easily understood by the thousands of employees and volunteers who roll up their sleeves to work here each day, and by nearly 800,000 patients who have placed their trust in our hands since 1944.

Now, for only the fourth time in the institution's history, we're updating our logo.

The new logo integrates MD Anderson's distinctive tagline, Making Cancer History®, and the long-running cancer strike-through campaign, in which survivors tell their cancer stories and draw a red line through their cancer type to mark their triumph over the disease.

The intent of the mark? It's to make clear to all those who touch MD Anderson the commitment to the mission and the optimism of being on the cusp of major advances toward reaching it.

"Our dream is that five years from now when people anywhere see a red strike through cancer, they'll immediately associate it with MD Anderson and Making Cancer History," says John Mendelsohn, M.D., president of MD Anderson.

"We want to be the first choice for patients and their families, for talented faculty and staff, for donors and volunteers whose support is essential, and for students and trainees aspiring to be future leaders. With this new mark, we've told the world where we stand in the effort to end cancer, so that they can come and stand with us."

Learn more about the history of the MD Anderson Logo: Making Cancer History: The Evolution of a Powerful Idea

Read the News Release: New MD Anderson Logo Challenges Employees, Public to Aspire to a World Without Cancer


As a longtime MD Anderson patient, I would like to register my discomfort with your new logo.

I have long admired the strikethrough advertising campaign. It makes a strong yet believable promise--that, in the case of the particular individual featured in the testimonial, there has been a cure. I have never interpreted that as a promise that MD Anderson can cure every patient's, say, lung cancer or pancreatic cancer or leukemia, only a statement that, even in the cases of particularly rare or deadly cancers, cures are within the realm of possibility at MD Anderson.

When the strikethrough is not connected to a specific testimonial, though, as in the new logo, it makes a promise that even MD Anderson cannot deliver on. The strikethrough in the logo promises that not only can MD Anderson cure EVERY cancer, it has already done so. A strikeout has to be earned--and right now, it is still being earned one patient at a time.

I have every confidence that MD Anderson will continue to lead the fight against all types of cancer. But this logo design is a rare misstep for your marketing team.

Pam – thank you for providing a very thoughtful and articulate reaction to our new logo. You have a very clear understanding of our long-running advertising campaign and it’s wonderful to learn how it has impacted you as a patient here. As with all creative endeavors, we know that there will be varying responses to our new logo – which is bold. Your point of view is very understandable, and likely shared by others. We are hopeful that this new logo articulates our aspiration to one day eliminate cancer – as is our stated mission.

I personally like the new logo in all its simplicity. MD Anderson has the loftiest of goals to eliminate, annihilate, eradicate the existence of CANCER. And if anyone can do it, it's MD Anderson!

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