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    Dear Colleagues,

    The RBHS Chancellor’s office is pleased to announce the recipients of the second annual RBHS Chancellor Awards.  The RBHS Chancellor Awards were established to acknowledge the extraordinary work of our faculty and staff. 

    In addition to the high recognition, the awardees will be honored in a video to be shared with you in late November 2021.

    We thank all the nominators and those who participated on the committees to review the nominations.

    Please join us in congratulating the following honorees:

    Clinical or Healthcare Excellence Award

    • Marc Klapholz (New Jersey Medical School), Professor and Chair, Department of Medicine: For his excellence in developing and implementing innovative programs to expand and improve the delivery and quality of health care to an underserved minority community.

    Clinical or Health Sciences Investigator Award

    • Early Career
      • Daniel B. Horton (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, School of Public Health, Rutgers Institute for Health), Assistant Professor of Pediatrics, RWJMS, Assistant Professor of Epidemiology, SPH, Center for Pharmacoepidemiology and Treatment Science, Institute for Health, Health Care Policy and Aging Research: For his institutional contributions to advancing child health research at Rutgers.
      • Olga F. Jarrin Montaner (School of Nursing), Assistant Professor, Division of Nursing Science:  For her research in nursing, gerontology, and health services to better support community-residing elders and their caregivers.
    • Established Investigator
    • Cande Ananth (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Professor and Vice Chair, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences: For his unique ability to blend epidemiologic and clinical research through meaningful collaboration to promote women’s health.

    Distinguished Mentor Award

    • Judith Deutsch (School of Health Professions), Professor and Director, Rivers Lab, Department of Rehabilitation and Movement Science:  For being a highly competent mentor, challenging her mentees to problem-solve through constructive feedback.
    • Debra L. Laskin (Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy), Distinguished Professor and Chair, Roy A. Bowers Endowed Chair, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology: For being a dedicated, selfless, and effective teacher, advocate, and mentor to scores of high school, undergraduate and graduate students, postgraduate trainees, and new faculty throughout her career.

    Excellence in Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Award

    • Charletta Ayers (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Associate Professor, Vice-Chair, Clinical Services, Chief, Division of General OB/GYN, Director, Urban & Global Scholars Program, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology & Reproductive Sciences: For promoting and advocating diversity, equity and inclusion for learners, faculty, and patients locally and globally. 
    • Michelle DallaPiazza (New Jersey Medical School), Associate Professor, Department of Medicine, Division of Infectious Diseases:  For championing health equity and social justice education, and patient care.
    • Fatmata Kabia (School of Health Professions), Co-Chair of Admissions/ Program Development Analyst, Doctor of Physical Therapy Program: For working diligently to create equitable admissions criteria, and to recruit, admit, and support a more diverse student body.
    • Ravi Maharajh (University Behavioral Health Care), Director, Marketing & Communications: For developing the UBHC Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Committee, and creating a UBHC Black, Indigenous, (and) People of Color (BIPOC) mentorship program.

    Basic Sciences Researcher Award

    • Early Career
      • Phoebe Stapleton (Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy), Assistant Professor, Department of Pharmacology and Toxicology: For identifying molecular links between maternal inhalation of nanoparticles and generational disease. 
    • Established Investigators
      • Zhiyuan Shen (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Professor of Radiation Oncology, Professor of Pharmacology, Chief of Division of Radiation Cancer Biology: For his pioneering work on DNA damage and for building a world class radiation cancer biology program at Rutgers.   
      • Yuan-Xiang Tao (New Jersey Medical School), Professor/Vice Chair of Research, Director, Center for Pain Medicine Research, Department of Anesthesiology: For his fundamental discoveries in understanding the mechanisms of neuropathic pain.

    Community Service Award

    • Karen D’Alonzo (School of Nursing), Associate Professor, Director, Center for Community Health Partnerships, Division of Nursing Science: For striving to improve the quality of life for Latina immigrant families using culturally appropriate community engagement strategies.
    • Tynisha Coleman (Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences Central Administration), Director of Special Projects: For her contributions to the Alumnae at Douglass College.
    • Shawna Hudson (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Professor, Research Division Chief and Henry Rutgers Chair of Family Medicine and Community Health, Director, Center Advancing Research and Evaluation for Patient-Centered Care (CARE-PC): For her leadership and commitment to community-engaged, health equity-focused research and cultivating trusted community partnerships.

    Distinguished Educator Award

    • Janet Alder (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Associate Professor, Dept of Neuroscience & Cell Biology, Assistant Dean for Graduate Academic and Student Affairs, SGS: For her creative implementation of new curricula, and mentoring of students and faculty.
    • Margaret Quinn (School of Nursing), Clinical Associate Professor, Specialty Director – Pediatric Nurse Practitioner Program: For demonstrating qualities of a well-rounded and well-qualified practitioner and educator and an exemplar whom all nurse educators aspire to be.

    Sustained Service Award

    • Suzanne L. Anderson (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Program Assistant, Chair’s Office, Department of Pediatrics: For her unwavering support for a division, a department and to RWJMS in the midst of a challenge, exemplifying a positive attitude, persistence, professionalism, and fortitude.
    • Filiz Carus Ozen (School of Health Professions), Instructional Designer, Dean’s Office: For being the sole SHP Instructional Designer who goes above and beyond to promote the success of the educational mission.
    • Arlene F. Clarke (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Manager of Administrative Services, Office of the Dean/Operations & Administration: For persistently going above and beyond to meet the needs of RWJMS employees, students, and patients in a manner that exceeds all expectations.
    • Cynthia Ferrer-Cespedes (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Program Director, Offices of Student and Multicultural Affairs, Assistant Director, Office of Special Academic Programs: For making it seem easy to be instrumental to the functioning of the offices of student affairs, special academic programs, and student groups.
    • Lisa A. Mulé (Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy), Senior Executive Associate for Administration: For working tirelessly to foster a positive work environment successfully supporting EMSOP’s core missions.
    • Bruce Ruck (New Jersey Medical School), Managing Director, NJ Poison Information and Education System: For overseeing the New Jersey Poison Control Center, and being instrumental in launching, operating, and maintaining the NJ COVID-19 Information Hotline.

    Emerging Leader Award

    • Erik Bopp (Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences Institute), Business Manager I: For being the epitome of an emerging leader, gaining the respect and trust of mentees, co-workers, and leadership. 

    Leadership Award

    • Kathleen Faup (Robert Wood Johnson Medical School), Faculty Practice Manager, Dept. of Pediatrics: For being a creative problem-solver and leader during RWJMS clinical services pod reorganization, COVID transformation of services, and EPIC implementation.

    Team Award

    • Violence Prevention and Victim Assistance Team (Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences Central Administration) – Kerry Camerer, Director; Sana Chawla, MS Candidate-Health Outcomes, Policy and Economics; Sheetal Ganesan, Graduate Assistant; and Taylor Miller, Education & Programming Coordinator: For their creative, responsive, and full engagement with RBHS schools and students in violence prevention and victim assistance.



    Bishr Omary, MD, PhD

    Senior Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Research

    Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences


    Brian L. Strom, MD, MPH

    Chancellor, Rutgers Biomedical and Health Sciences

    Executive Vice President for Health Affairs, Rutgers University