Tuesday, 20 Mar 2018

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ACR Award Recipients 2017

The American College of Rheumatology opened the 2017 meeting by inducting the new president (Dr. David Daikh) and officers and announcing its 2017 Award Winners. These recognitions are given annually to members who exhibit outstanding contributions to the field of rheumatology.

ACR Staff Achievement Award - Ronald Olejko. At the opening ceremony the college honored long-time ACR behind the scenes leader, Ronald Olejko. Ron has been the ACR’s senior director of meetings and conferences for over 30 years. He is responsible for the selection, planning and execution of the ACR annual meeting every year, including the selection of cities/convention centers, and is responsible for the excellence, coordination and execution of this highly complex meeting every year.  Those who have worked with Ron know him for his smarts, wicked wit, rapid responses, and organizational Jenga mastery. He is the McGyver of Disasters. He once squelched an exploding projector fire at the Philadelphia ACR with his walkie talkie and fannie-pack (what was in that pack?). Because of Ron and his staff we have enjoyed 30 years of flawless educational meetings in great places (except for Minnesota). Ron, we will miss you! (if you have comments or best memories of Ron Olejko - please add to comments below)

2017 Masters of the ACR are:

  • Ed Acevedo-Vasquez, MD, Gregorio Escobedo, 676, Clinica San Felipe, Lima, Peru
  • Karyl Barron, MD, National Institute of Health, Division of Intramural Research, Bethesda, MD
  • Keith Elkon, MD, University of Washington, Rheumatology, Seattle, WA
  • David Felson, MD, MPH, Boston University School of Medicine, Clinical Research Training Unit, Boston, MA
  • Joseph Flood, MD, The Ohio State University College of Medicine, Columbus Arthritis Center, Columbus, OH
  • Norman Gaylis, MD, Private Practice - Arthritis Rheumatic Disease Specialties, Aventura, FL
  • Harry Gewanter, MD, Private Practice & Commonwealth University of Medicine, Richmond, VA
  • Rodney Grahame, MD, FRCP, FACP, University College of London, London, United Kingdom
  • Michael Holers, MD, University of Colorado School of Medicine, Aurora, CO
  • Karen Kolba, MD, Private Practice - Pacific Arthritis Center, Pismo Beach, CA
  • Stephen Lindsey, MD, Ochsner Clinic Baton Rouge, Baton Rouge, LA
  • Richard Looney, MD, University of Rochester, Department of Allergy, Immunology, and Rheumatology Division, Rochester, NY
  • Johanne Martel-Pelletier, PhD, University of Montreal Hospital Research Center, Osteoarthritis Research Unit, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
  • John Mountz, MD, PhD, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Department of Medicine/Rheumatology Division, Birmingham, AL
  • Eileen Moynihan, MD, Noridian Healthcare Solutions, Hadden Heights, NJ
  • Jim O'Dell MD, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Department of Internal Medicine, Omaha, NE
  • Prekash Pispati , MD, MSc, FICP, FACR, Jaslok Hospital, Mumbai, India
  • Jane Salmon, MD, Weill Cornell Medicine, New York, NY
  • Richard Sontheimer, MD, University of Utah Medical Center, Department of Dermatology, Cottonwood, UT
  • E. William St. Clair, MD, Duke University Medical Center, Department of Medicine, Durham, NC
  • William Stohl, MD, PhD, Keck School of Medicine of University of Southern California, Division of Rheumatology, Los Angeles, CA
  • Robert Terkeltaub, MD, VA Medical Center, Department of Rheumatology, San Diego, CA
  • George Tsokos, MD, Harvard Medical School Beth Israel, Department of Medicine/Rheumatology, Boston, MA
  • Katherine Upchurch, MD, University of Massachusetts Medical Center, Worcester, MA
  • Anthony Woolf, MBBS, FRCP, Royal Cornwall Hospital, Rheumatology Department, Truro Cornwall, United Kingdom
  • Ed Yelin, PhD, University of California, Arthritis Research Group, San Francisco, CA

Presidential Gold Medal: Michael Weinblatt, MD, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA

Distinguished Basic Investigator Award: Robert Winchester, MD, Columbia University, Department of Medicine, New York, NY

Distinguished Clinician Scholar Award: W. Winn Chatham, MD, University of Alabama at Birmingham, Birmingham, AL

Henry Kunkel Young Investigator Award: Nunzio Bottini, MD, PhD, University of California San Diego, Department of Medicine/Rheumatology, La Jolla, CA

Distinguished Clinical Investigator Award: Murray Urowitz, MD, FRCPC, The Toronto Western Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada

Paulding Phelps Award: W. Patrick Knibbe, MD, St. Luke's Children's Rheumatology, Meridian, ID

Distinguished Service Award: Salahuddin Kazi, MD, UT Southwestern Medical Center, Dallas, TX

Distinguished Fellowship Program Director Award: Simon Helfgott, MD, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Department of Rheumatology & Immunology, Boston, MA

Excellence in Investigative Mentoring Award: Elizabeth Karlson, MD, Brigham & Women’s Hospital, Boston, MA

Distinguished Fellow Award Winners:

  • Bryant England, MD, University of Nebraska Medical Center and Nebraska-Western IA VA Health Care System, Division of Rheumatology and Immunology, Omaha, NE
  • Eric Gapud, MD, PhD, John Hopkins University, Division of Rheumatology, Baltimore, MD
  • Sabrina Gmuca, MD, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Division of Rheumatology and The Center for Amplified Musculoskeletal Pain, Philadelphia, PA
  • Lindsay Kelmenson, MD, University of Colorado, Division of Rheumatology, Aurora, CO
  • Julia Manasson, MD, New York University, New York, NY
  • Renuka Nayak, MD, PhD, University of California San Francisco, Department of Microbiology and Immunology, San Francisco, CA
  • Cory Perugino, Massachusetts General Hospital, Division of Rheumatology, Allergy and Immunology, Boston, MA
  • Lin Shen, MD, PhD, University of California San Francisco, Department of Medicine, Division of Rheumatology, San Francisco, CA
  • Mehret Birru Talabi, MD, PhD, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA
  • Patompomg Ungprasert, MD, MS, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN


The author has no conflicts of interest to disclose related to this subject

Rheumatologists' Comments

Ron is one of the few left who has been to almost as many meetings as I have. I hope and expect he will drop in to future ones. I wish I had his equanimity in the face of constant pressure during those meetings. It makes giving scientific presentations look like a walk in the park. Good luck to you Ron. Given your background, how about commanding a future tourist flight to the moon? Art W

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