JPMorgan Chase JPM +0.61% Chairman and CEO Jamie Dimon revealed he has been diagnosed with throat cancer in an internal memo to employees Tuesday evening.
According to Dimon’s e-mail, the cancer is curable and “the prognosis from doctors is excellent” after multiple tests confirmed the cancer is confined in the lymph nodes on the right side of his neck. The memo said Dimon will undergo eight weeks of chemotherapy and radiation at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital and curtail his travel, but he does not plan to take time off from his day-to-day leadership of the firm.

Dimon’s announcement came on the very day he celebrates his 10th anniversary at the helm of the bank, which makes him the longest-tenured CEO among the major U.S. banks. That tenure, which began when JPMorgan acquired Dimon-led Bank One a decade ago, has had plenty of highs and lows.

After steering the bank through the worst of the financial crisis in better shape than rivals like Bank of America BAC +1.5% and Citigroup C +0.76%, Dimon has faced sharp criticism in recent years over his handling of the London Whale trading debacle, which caused billions in losses and prompted calls for him to give up his seat as chairman of the board. (See “Dimon: What I Learned From The London Whale.”)

The announcement of Dimon’s cancer diagnosis Tuesday also illustrates the different ways companies disclose health issues of senior executives. Berkshire Hathaway’s Warren Buffett revealed he was undergoing prostate cancer treatment in 2012 and outgoing AIG CEO Robert Benmosche made his cancer diagnosis public in 2010. Contrast those examples with that of the late Apple CEO Steve Jobs, who took multiple leaves of absence from the company to undergo treatment before his 2011 death but kept a tight seal on the details of his condition.

The full text of Dimon’s memo to JPMorgan colleagues, subsequently released to the public and shareholders, is below:

Subject line: Sharing some personal news

Dear Colleagues and Shareholders -

I wanted to let you know that I have just been diagnosed with throat cancer. The good news is that the prognosis from my doctors is excellent, the cancer was caught quickly, and my condition is curable. Following thorough tests that included a CAT scan, PET scan and a biopsy, the cancer is confined to the original site and the adjacent lymph nodes on the right side of my neck. Importantly, there is no evidence of cancer elsewhere in my body.

My evaluation and treatment plan are still being finalized, but at this time it appears I will begin radiation and chemotherapy treatment shortly at Memorial Sloan Kettering Hospital, which should take approximately eight weeks. While the treatment will curtail my travel during this period, I have been advised that I will be able to continue to be actively involved in our business, and we will continue to run the company as normal. Our Board has been fully briefed and is totally supportive.

As you all know, we have outstanding leaders across our businesses and functions – the best team I’ve ever had the privilege of working with – so our company will move forward together with confidence as we continue to deliver first-class results for our customers, communities and shareholders.

I feel very good now and will let all of you know if my health situation changes.

I appreciate your support and want to thank our employees for the amazing work they do day-in and day-out. I’m very proud to be part of this company and honored to be working with such an exceptional group of people.

Jamie

source: forbes.com by Steve Schaefer
 


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