Announcement of Awards: ASH Mentor Awards, ASH Award for Leadership in Promoting Diversity, ASH Outstanding Service Award, ASH Public Service Award, and Wallace H. Coulter Award for Lifetime Achievement in Hematology
ASH Mentor Award
The ASH Mentor Award was established to recognize hematologists who have excelled in mentoring trainees and colleagues. Each year the Society recognizes two outstanding mentors drawn from the areas of basic science, clinical investigation, education, or clinical/community care who have had a significant, positive impact on their mentees' careers and, through their mentees, have advanced research and patient care in the field of hematology.
Ronald Hoffman, MD, Professor of Medicine in the Division of Hematology and Medical Oncology at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, will be presented with the 2017 ASH Mentor Award for decisively shaping the careers of 33 mentees, including physicians, physician-scientists, and basic scientists, many of whom have risen to positions of prominence within academic medical centers and have become mentors themselves. Throughout his career, Dr. Hoffman made sure his mentees could think critically and tackle any problem analytically and methodically. He challenged them to envision goals that would bring them satisfaction, and then helped lay out a path for them to achieve their objectives. Mentees report that Dr. Hoffman made everyone feel like an indispensable member of a major team by bringing together many researchers to collaborate and exchange research ideas. Dr. Hoffman has maintained relationships with countless mentees and former colleagues, and many of these relationships continue to exist in the form of ongoing research collaborations. Dr. Hoffman has been a very active member of ASH, and during his tenure as ASH President, he helped to establish the Minority Recruitment Initiative that has led to retention and mentoring of many underrepresented minorities in hematology and serves as the foundation of ASH's commitment to diversifying the field.
Oliver W. Press, MD, PhD, passed away on Friday, September 29, 2017. At the time of his death he was a recipient of the Giuliani/Press Endowed Chair for Cancer Research and member at Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, and Professor of Medicine and Adjunct Professor of Bioengineering at University of Washington in Seattle. Dr. Press had a long and consistent history of influencing the careers of numerous mentees. He mentored more than 70 individuals since the 1980s, including undergraduates, medical students, PhD students, and postdoctoral fellows. His commitment as a mentor can easily be seen in the impressive number of his former trainees who have received career development grants and have gone on to become leaders in academic medicine and industry. Dr. Press's mentees uniformly cite his unparalleled generosity with his time and his dedication to mentorship activities as having played a large role in advancing their careers. He is also recognized for the value he placed on work-life balance, personal connections, and professionalism. Even though Dr. Press is no longer with us, his legacy continues through his mentees.
ASH Award for Leadership in Promoting Diversity
The ASH Award for Leadership in Promoting Diversity honors hematologists who have supported the development of an inclusive hematology workforce, who have encouraged the career development of underrepresented minority trainees, or who have made the commitment to inclusiveness in contributions to the mission of ASH.
The inaugural ASH Award for Leadership in Promoting Diversity will be awarded to Betty S. Pace, MD, of Augusta University in Augusta, Georgia, for her extraordinary commitment to diversity and inclusion in hematology. She is a physician scientist and prominent national figure in sickle cell disease research who has dedicated countless hours to mentoring and promoting diversity in hematology research for more than two decades. From early in her career, she worked to attract students from high schools and undergraduate programs to biomedical research. She has since created a talent pipeline of trainees, especially from underrepresented groups, to further diversify the workforce. Of the 80 individuals trained in the Pace Lab, 45 percent have been underrepresented minorities. Additionally, more than half of her publications have included minority trainees and collaborators. Dr. Pace has worked extensively for ASH as a mentor for the Minority Medical Student Award Program (MMSAP) and member of the Committee on Promoting Diversity.
ASH Outstanding Service Award
The Outstanding Service Award is presented to an individual who has worked tirelessly to raise public awareness and increase research funding for hematologic diseases.
The 2017 recipient of the ASH Outstanding Service Award is former NBC Nightly News anchor, Tom Brokaw, for his dedication to increasing public awareness about cancer and the need for additional research funding since his diagnosis with multiple myeloma. Mr. Brokaw has shared his personal cancer experience in his book A Lucky Life Interrupted and in essays in The New York Times and other publications, providing an example not only for patients, but also for their families, of how to best deal with their disease. He has also shared his story at numerous events throughout the country, listening to the stories of countless patients and helping them acquire access to specialized care.
ASH Public Service Award
The ASH Public Service Award is presented annually to an elected public official who has demonstrated unparalleled leadership on issues of importance to hematology research and/or practice.
Former Vice President Joseph R. Biden, Jr.
Vice President Biden led the Obama Administration's Cancer Moonshot to accelerate cancer research. Under his leadership, the White House Cancer Moonshot Task Force catalyzed collaborations among 20 government agencies, departments, and White House offices and more than 70 private sector collaborations designed to achieve a decades' worth of progress in five years in the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cancer. In 2017, President Obama presented Vice President Biden with the Presidential Medal of Freedom with distinction for his service to the United States, including his leadership on the Cancer Moonshot effort. Vice President Biden has pledged to continue his efforts to support cancer research and the Moonshot through the Biden Foundation, which he and his wife founded after leaving public service in January 2017.
Wallace H. Coulter Award for Lifetime Achievement in Hematology Wallace H. Coulter was a prolific inventor, innovator, and entrepreneur. His Coulter Principle pioneered the development of flow cytometry, defined particle characterization, and made possible automated hematology, thus revolutionizing laboratory medicine. The Coulter Counter led to major breakthroughs in science, medicine, and industry. This award, in his name, recognizes an individual who has demonstrated a lasting commitment to the field of hematology through outstanding contributions to education, research, and practice.
The 2017 Wallace H. Coulter Award for Lifetime Achievement in Hematology will recognize Marshall A. Lichtman, MD, of the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York, for his more than 50 years of service to the field of hematology as an educator, mentor, researcher, and physician. Dr. Lichtman is a highly consulted expert on the diagnosis and management of the most complex hematologic problems. He has authored several textbooks, multiple book chapters, and numerous scientific articles that have had a broad influence on hematology. His research interests have included detailed studies of blood cell membrane biochemistry and biophysics, hemolytic anemias, hemoglobin function, hematopoiesis, marrow ultrastructure and cell release, hyperleukocytic leukemias, pathobiology of the myeloid neoplasms, and, more recently, historical aspects of hematologic diseases. He presented his research on blood cell membranes at the Presidential Symposium at the 1972 ASH Annual Meeting organized by Maxwell Wintrobe, a legend in hematology. Additionally, Dr. Lichtman has trained numerous fellows in clinical and laboratory hematology, including instruction in blood and marrow interpretation. He taught blood cell anatomy, biochemistry, and physiology in lectures and laboratories to first-year medical students for over 30 years and taught the medical school's second-year hematology course for approximately 25 years. During his 50 year career, Dr. Lichtman served on 10 editorial boards including Blood, the British Journal of Hematology, Experimental Hematology, the American Journal of Hematology, and Stem Cells. A former president of ASH (in 1989), Dr. Lichtman has been an active member of the Society for 47 years. His roles include service on the Executive Committee, the Advisory Board, and terms as Chair of the Scientific Affairs Committee, the Nominating Committee, and the Finance Committee.
Kenneth C. Anderson
Marshall A. Lichtman
Betty S. Pace
Oliver W. Press
Active, International, Emeritus, and Honorary Members
Associate, International Associate, Student, and Resident Members