The winner of the 2013 ABMM/ABMLI Professional Recognition Award is Gary Doern, Ph.D., University of Iowa College of Medicine, Iowa City. This award was established over twenty years ago to recognize a Diplomate of the American Board of Medical Microbiology (ABMM) or the American Board of Medical Laboratory Immunology (ABMLI) for exceptional contributions to the advancement of the profession. As a former Vice Chair of ABMM, as well as someone who has been involved in every part of the ABMM examination process, Doern clearly exemplifies the intent of the award.
In 1970 Doern received his B.S. degree from Northwestern University. He went on to earn his Ph.D. in Pathology from the Medical College of Wisconsin in 1977. Following two years of post-doctoral training in clinical microbiology at the University of Oregon Health Sciences Center in Portland, he became Director of the Clinical Microbiology Laboratories at the University of Massachusetts Medical Center in Worcester where he remained for 18 years. In 1997, he moved to the University of Iowa College of Medicine as Professor of Pathology and Director of the Clinical Microbiology Laboratories at the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics. In 2008, he retired as Professor Emeritus from his position at the University of Iowa. Karen Carroll, John Hopkins University School of Medicine, credits Doern for having a profound impact on her career. “His strong encouragement and exemplary laboratory management, scientific acumen and mentorship of medical technologists, residents and fellows inspired me to seek a fellowship in medical microbiology,” says Carroll.
In addition to his outstanding work as a professor and mentor, Doern has also made numerous contributions to the ABMM community through his volunteering at ASM and other organizations. He has been Vice Chair of the American Board of Medical Microbiology, a member of the ICAAC program committee, a voting member of the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute, as well as a member of many other ASM committees. He has also served the Infectious Diseases Society of America, and the American Society for Clinical Pathology. Currently Doern is the Editor in Chief of the Journal of Clinical Microbiology (JCM) and serves on the editorial boards of four other journals about infectious diseases and clinical microbiology. As “JCM's Editor-in-Chief, Doren has reinvigorated the journal with superb mini-reviews and challenging point-counterpoint articles. His focus is on clinical and scientific issues that enhance the value of clinical microbiology and clinical microbiologists,” explains Melvin Weinstein. Weinstein goes on to say that Doern “recently organized "Camp Clinical Micro", a symposium that brought together microbiologists from around the US and individuals from the diagnostics industry, to address unanswered questions in infectious diseases diagnosis. The event was extraordinarily educational and promoted professional interactions in an informal setting.”
Doern has received numerous honors including the Outstanding Medical Educator Award for his teaching activities at UMMC and the University of Iowa College of Medicine for 21 of his 29 years at those institutions and the distinguished Becton-Dickinson Award from ASM for lasting contributions to the discipline of clinical microbiology. He has delivered well over 500 invited lectures in various medical-scientific educational forums worldwide. Doern is an elected fellow of the American Academy of Microbiology and the Infectious Disease Society of America.