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October 2009
Vol. 19 No. 10
Your Colleagues
Congratulations to the 2009 Society Award Winners!

IDSA and the Education and Research Foundation offer awards to individuals to honor outstanding achievements in the field of infectious diseases. Award recipients are pioneers in the study of newly emerging diseases, inspiring and supportive teachers, and those who paved the way for lifesaving vaccines. 

Alexander Fleming Award
The Alexander Fleming Award is granted in recognition of a career that reflects major contributions to the acquisition and dissemination of knowledge about infectious diseases.

Arnold S. Monto, MD, FIDSA, is one of the world’s foremost experts in respiratory illnesses. Dr. Monto is professor of epidemiology at the University of Michigan School of Public Health and the principal investigator in many studies funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). His contribution is seminal in our understanding of the pathogenesis, treatment, and prevention of influenza virus infections—his work is now the gold standard for dealing with influenza outbreaks and our understanding of the herd immunity caused by targeted influenza vaccination.

Oswald Avery Award
The Oswald Avery Award recognizes outstanding achievement in an area of infectious diseases by an individual member or fellow of IDSA who is 45 or younger.

Jean-Laurent Casanova, MD, PhD, is recognized for his pioneering work in the discovery, development, and scientific and clinical understanding of the field of innate immunity. Dr. Casanova is a professor of pediatrics and head of the Laboratory of Human Genetics of Infectious Diseases at The Rockefeller University in New York. Dr. Casanova’s research has revolutionized our understanding of the genetics involved in the predisposition and susceptibility to pediatric infectious diseases.

Mentor Award
The Mentor Award was created to recognize individuals who have served as exemplary mentors and is presented to an IDSA member or fellow who has been exceptional in guiding professional growth of infectious diseases professionals. 

Richard L. Guerrant, MD, FIDSA, is a world-renowned expert on enteric infections. Dr. Guerrant is the Thomas H. Hunter Professor of International Medicine in the division of infectious diseases and international health at the University of Virginia School of Medicine in Charlottesville. He has mentored more than 150 students and fellows and shaped the careers of academic and scientific leaders in tropical medicine, such as Drs. James M. Hughes, Jonatahan I. Ravdin, Ted Steiner, Cynthia L. Sears, and Cirle Warren. 

Society Citation
The Society Citation is a discretionary award given in recognition of exemplary contribution to IDSA, an outstanding discovery in the field of infectious diseases, or a lifetime of outstanding achievement in a given area—either in research, clinical investigation, or clinical practice.

Warren D. Johnson Jr., MD, FIDSA, is a well-known researcher on tropical medicine. Dr. Johnson is B.H. Kean Professor of Tropical Medicine and director of the Center for Global Health at Weill Medical College of Cornell University in New York. He has contributed greatly in reducing infant mortality from diarrheal diseases in Port-au-Prince, Haiti. He has trained several generations of researchers from Haiti, Brazil, Tanzania, and the United States, impacting the health of these countries. His research has been pivotal in understanding the natural history and therapy of leishmaniasis and leptospirosis in Brazil, and the epidemiology of AIDS and isosporiasis in Haiti.

Clinical Teacher Award
The Clinical Teacher Award honors a career involved in teaching clinical infectious diseases to fellows, residents, or medical students and recognizes excellence as a clinician and motivation to teach the next generation.

Joshua Fierer, MD, FIDSA, a committed clinician and teacher, has mentored more than 15 fellows as an individual mentor in his laboratory and co-mentored numerous trainees from around the world, including Drs. Theo Kirkland, Mark Swancutt, Ferric Fang, and Lars Eckman. His mentees describe him as a compassionate, good-humored mentor with an encyclopedic knowledge of infectious diseases. Dr. Fierer is professor of medicine and pathology in residence at the University of California in San Diego.

Watanakunakorn Award
Named to honor the memory of Dr. Chatrchai Watanakunakorn, this award is given annually by the IDSA Education and Research Foundation to an IDSA member or fellow in recognition of outstanding achievement in the clinical practice of infectious diseases.

Lawrence J. Eron, MD, FIDSA, a recognized early pioneer in telemedicine, is known among his peers as a “doctor’s doctor.” Colleagues and residents describe Dr. Eron as a consummate clinician, loved by his patients and admired by other physicians, who often consult him about infectious diseases. He is a great communicator, sensitive to the needs of his local community, and a thoughtful leader involved in the improvement of health care, always ready to promote cost-effective quality care. Dr. Eron is an associate professor of medicine at the University of Hawaii in Honolulu.

The awards will be presented during the Opening Plenary Session at the 47th Annual Meeting of IDSA in Philadelphia on Oct. 29. More information about this year's Society Award winners is available online.

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