The Awards and Honors newsletter features recent awards and honors recognizing our talented and dedicated MGH staff and employees.
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Aaron Aguirre, MD, PhD, of the Cardiology Division and the Center for Systems Biology, has received a 2017 Physician/Scientist Development Award for “Morphology and Dynamic Functions of Pericytes in the Heart.” Aguirre’s project will use state-of-the-art microscopy techniques to better understand the role of pericytes—unique cells that line the outer walls of the smallest blood vessels in the heart. Pericytes are thought to have many roles in regulating blood flow and maintaining local tissue health, though the organization and functions of these cells in the heart are not well understood. Funding for the Physician/Scientist Development Awards is provided by the Executive Committee on Research along with the Center for Diversity and Inclusion.
David Chung, MD, PhD, attending neurointensivist in the Neurology Department, has been awarded the Timothy P. Susco Chair of Research and the Andrew David Heitman Foundation Chair of Research from The Brain Aneurysm Foundation for his work, “Impact of Spreading Depolarizations and Subarachnoid Hemorrhage on Brain Connectivity.” He is one of 14 awardees, given to those whose work is impacting a disease that affects one in 50 people in the United States, often leading to death or lifelong disability.
Douglas E. Drachman, MD, director of the Cardiovascular Fellowship Program and Interventional Cardiology Fellowship, has been appointed as the inaugural incumbent of the Teresa G. and Ferdinand F. Martignetti Endowed Chair in Cardiovascular Medicine established by the Corrigan Minehan Heart Center. A July 18 celebration featured speakers Peter L. Slavin, MD, MGH president; Anthony Rosenzweig, MD, chief of Cardiology; Drachman, Roman DeSanctis, MD, director of Clinical Cardiology emeritus; and Carl Martignetti, the donor. The establishment of this chair will help advance the research, care and teaching goals of the Cardiology Division and the Corrigan Minehan Heart Center. Pictured from left, Teresa Martignetti, Drachman, Carl Martignetti and Slavin
Joshua Hirsch, MD, vice chair and service line chief of Interventional Radiology, was inducted as a Fellow of the Society of NeuroInterventional Surgery (SNIS) at its 14th annual meeting in Colorado Springs July 24-27. The SNIS plans to honor up to 10 percent of its membership as fellows of the SNIS. Hirsch was one of only 12 luminaries to be designated as a fellow in this inaugural group and was thus recognized for his many important contributions to the field of NeuroInterventional Surgery.
Greg Koski, PhD, MD, honorary anesthetist in the Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine and a senior faculty advisor at Partners HealthCare International, has been named one of the PharmaVoice 100 for 2017. The award recognizes 100 of the most inspirational leaders who have an extraordinary and positive impact on their colleagues, their institutions and the life-sciences ecosystem. Koski was recognized for his work as co-founder, president and CEO of the Alliance for Clinical Research Excellence and Safety, a global multi-sector non-profit collaborative building a comprehensive integrated system for accelerating medical innovation and product development in the public interest.
Julie Levison, MD, MPhil, MPH, of the Division of General Internal Medicine, has received a CFAR ADELANTE Award from the National Institutes of Health, the Office of AIDS Research and the NIH-funded Centers for AIDS Research to support new  investigators working on HIV research in Latinos. Hispanic/Latino populations in the U.S. currently bear a disproportionate burden of the HIV/AIDS epidemic. Adelante means forward or onward in Spanish. The goals of the ADELANTE Program are to decrease HIV-related health disparities in Hispanic/Latino communities and to promote the mentored development of new investigators to focus on HIV/AIDS in Hispanic/Latino populations.
Daniel MacArthur, PhD, of the Analytic and Translational Genetics Unit, has received the inaugural Early-Career Award from the American Society of Human Genetics. The award recognizes scientists who are in the early stages of their careers as independent investigators. MacArthur received the award in recognition of his work on the development of widely-used open-access resources of human genetic variation, as well as gene discovery in rare inherited diseases.
The MGH has been named #1 on’s list of Best Hospitals to Work for in 2017. The award was based solely on reviews posted by current, former and prospective employees between July 2015 and June of this year. Reviews on rave about our benefit offerings, the diversity of our hospital community and the opportunities for advancement. The MGH also was first in individual rankings for both management and work/life balance.
Terrence O’Malley, MD, MGH internist/geriatrician, has been appointed by the U.S. Government Accountability Office as a member of the new Health Information Technology Advisory Committee. The committee will provide recommendations to the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology on policies, standards, implementation specifications and certification criteria relating to the implementation of a health information technology infrastructure that advances the electronic access, exchange and use of health information.
Kristian Olson, MD, MPH, DTM&H, core educator faculty in the Department of Medicine and director of the Consortium for Affordable Medical Technologies (CAMTech), accepted a Transition-to-Scale Award from the Savings Lives at Birth for his team’s work on the Augmented Infant Resuscitator (AIR). He accepted the award with Data Santorino, MBChB, MMed of Mbarara University in Uganda. The AIR device is compatible with nearly every existing bag valve mask. It monitors ventilation quality and provides real-time actionable cues to users. A study at both the MGH and in Uganda showed that helped providers achieve proper ventilation twice as fast and maintain it twice as long as those without the device. At birth, seconds matter for survival, and the AIR device is helping birth attendants gain those precious seconds.
Fatima Cody Stanford, MD, MPH, MPA, adult and pediatric obesity medicine physician of the MGH Weight Center, Department of Medicine-Gastroenterology and Department of Pediatrics-Endocrinology, has received a 2017 Physician-Scientist Development Award from the MGH Center for Diversity and Inclusion for "Exploring Referral Patterns and Shared Decision Making Regarding Weight Loss Surgery in Adolescents and Young Adults with Moderate to Severe Obesity." Funding for the Physician/Scientist Development Awards is provided by the Executive Committee on Research in conjunction with the Center for Diversity and Inclusion. Stanford also has been selected to the inaugural class of Emory University Alumni Association’s “40 Under Forty,” a selected group of outstanding young alumni with impressive track records who are “go-to” leaders.
Alphonse G. Taghian, MD, PhD, director of Lymphedema Research Program, has been honored as a Fellow of the American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO). An ASTRO fellow designation honors individuals who have been active, emeritus or international members of the society for at least 15 years, given the equivalent of 10 years of service to ASTRO, and significantly added to the field of radiation oncology in the areas of research, education, patient care, or service and leadership.
Jennifer Temel, MD, director of the Cancer Outcomes Research Program and Hostetter MGH Research Scholar, along with Joseph Greer, PhD, program director of the Center for Psychiatric Oncology & Behavioral Sciences, have received a research funding award from the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) for their research “Comparative Effectiveness of Early Integrated Telehealth Versus In-Person Palliative Care for Patients with Advanced Lung Cancer.” The new awards were given to those whose work specifically focuses on community-based palliative care delivery. The goal of this project is to determine if telehealth is an effective, patient-centered, and accessible delivery modality for early palliative care.
Johnathan Whetstine, PhD, of the MGH Cancer Center and Tepper Family MGH Research Scholar, has received a Lung Cancer Discovery Award from the American Lung Association. This award supports investigators at any level of research experience focusing on novel treatments or a cure for lung cancer. His goal is to use studies about histone modifiers to provide insights into tumor heterogeneity and emerging drug resistance so that better molecular diagnostics, epigenetic therapeutic molecules, or use of novel therapeutic combinations can be achieved in cancer treatment.
Alik Widge, MD, PhD, director of the Translational NeuroEngineering Laboratory, Division of Neurotherapeutics, has received the 2017 One Mind/Janssen Rising Star Translational Research Award from the One Mind Institute and Janssen Research & Development, LLC. This award identifies and funds pivotal, innovative research on the causes of and cures for brain disorders. Toward boosting the recovery of patients with illnesses such as schizophrenia, major depression or obsessive-compulsive disorder, Widge proposes to identify precisely the brain circuits that govern the inflexibility of thinking common among patients with such illnesses, and to test whether neurostimulation of these circuits could improve mental flexibility.