The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) recognized the recipients of its 2019 Gold Medal awards and other high-profile honors at the 2019ASTRO Annual Meeting in Chicago.
Walter J. Curran Jr, MD; Silvia C. Formenti, MD, FASTRO; and Thomas R. Mackie, PhD, were awarded the Gold Medal—the highest honor bestowed upon ASTRO members. ASTRO awards its Gold Medal annually to individuals who have made outstanding lifetime contributions in the field of radiation oncology, including achievements in clinical patient care, research, teaching, and service to the profession.
Walter J. Curran Jr, MD
Silvia C. Formenti, MD, FASTRO
Thomas R. Mackie, PhD
Dr. Curran is an internationally known expert in lung cancer and brain tumors and Executive Director of Winship Cancer Institute at Emory University. He was instrumental in the merger that created NRG Oncology and currently serves as its Group Chairman and Principal Investigator.
Dr. Formenti is an internationally renowned physician scientist and Chair of Radiation Oncology at Weill Cornell Medical College at Cornell University. She has devoted her career to translating novel, preclinical information to the clinic, and her groundbreaking research on combining radiation therapy and immunotherapies has led to more than 100 clinical trials.
Dr. Mackie, known for successes as an inventor, innovator, and entrepreneur, is an Emeritus Professor of Medical Physics and Engineering at the University of Wisconsin, where he spent the majority of his career. Dr. Mackie has written more than 180 journal publications, with some of the most highly cited papers in the field, and he holds nearly 50 U.S. patents.
Medical oncologist Corey J. Langer, MD, Professor of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and Director of Thoracic Oncology at the Abramson Cancer Center, was chosen as the 2019 ASTRO Honorary Member. This award is the highest honor that ASTRO bestows upon cancer physicians and researchers in disciplines outside of radiation oncology, radiobiology, and medical physics.
Abstract Award Winners
Nearly 50 researchers received 2019 ASTRO Annual Meeting Abstract Awards, which recognized the highest-rated research presented at the 2019 ASTRO Annual Meeting.
The International Annual Meeting Scientific Abstract Award provides a grant for a radiation oncologist from a developing country to attend ASTRO’s Annual Meeting and to spend additional time at a comprehensive cancer center in the United States. The award fosters continuing medical education, assists in career development, and aids in establishing relationships with ASTRO members who may serve as scientific mentors to the award winner. The 2019 recipient, Rituraj Upadhyay, MD, of All India Institute of Medical Sciences in New Delhi, used his award to learn and practice precision radiation oncology at the Rutgers Cancer Institute of New Jersey.
Survivor Circle: Honoring Patients and Their Contributions
In addition to awarding achievements in the treatment of cancer made by physicians, ASTRO recognizes contributions from patients through its Survivor Circle program. The Survivor Circle Grant Program provides financial assistance to cancer support organizations in the metropolitan area where the ASTRO Annual Meeting is held. The 2019 grant recipients, Sisters Network Chicago Chapter and ALAS-WINGS, both provide support to survivors of breast cancer, their families, and caregivers, through services including advocacy, educational outreach, support groups, and mobile salons in the greater Chicago area.
The Survivor Circle Award recognizes an individual cancer survivor who lives in the area where the ASTRO Annual Meeting is held. The 2019 recipient, Chicago resident Bertha Mariscal, is a breast cancer survivor, ALAS-WINGS advocate, and volunteer in her community. ■