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People and Events

Dreger, Marianne

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: July 2007 - Volume 49 - Issue 7 - p 816-817
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0b013e318126bcef
People and Events: News Highlights

Department Editor

The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) has recognized four physicians, and the authors of the paper judged to be the best article published in JOEM in 2006, for their contributions to the field of occupational and environmental medicine (OEM). The award ceremony took place in New Orleans during the Opening Session of the 2007 American Occupational Health Conference (AOHC), the College’s annual spring meeting. Award winners are as follows:

William S. Knudsen Award—The highest award in OEM, the Knudsen Award was created in 1938 by William Knudsen, then president of General Motors, to recognize an individual who has made outstanding contributions to the field.

Clifford Rodney May, MD, DIH, FACOEM, of Edmonton, AB, Canada, received this year’s Knudsen Award for his distinguished career in and historic contributions to occupational medicine, specifically in the Canadian governmental arena where he was responsible for creating the Alberta Occupational Health and Safety Division; for transforming the provincial government safety agencies of Ontario and later Nova Scotia into major enforcement agencies; and for establishing a network of university-based teaching and service programs in all three provinces that have directly benefited millions of workers.

A member of ACOEM since 1958, Dr May received his MBBS from the University of London. He entered occupational medicine in 1954, after completing his internship and residency, as Area Medical Officer for the British Transport Commission. He was elevated to ACOEM Fellowship in 1967, and in 1968 he relocated to Canada and joined the Alberta Department of Health in Edmonton where he began his historic contributions to Canada’s national occupational medicine programs. Although Dr May retired last year from the Alberta Workers’ Compensation Board, the centers he helped establish continue to dispense life-saving information to workers, physicians, and businesses.

Meritorious Service Award—The Meritorious Service Award was established in 1945 to recognize an ACOEM member who has provided laudable service to the College.

The 2007 Award was presented to Kathryn L. Mueller, MD, MPH, FACOEM, Medical Director for the Colorado Division of Workers’ Compensation, and Director of the University of Colorado Occupational Medicine Residency Program. Dr Mueller was honored for her significant contributions to the College, specifically her service as a member of the ACOEM Board of Directors from 2000 to 2004, and as Secretary-Treasurer from 2004 to 2006. In addition, Dr Mueller was also cited for her service to the College as chair of the State Government Affairs Committee, and as a significant contributor to the ACOEM Occupational Medicine Practice Guidelines.

Dr Mueller received her medical degree from the University of Nebraska, and her MPH from the Medical College of Wisconsin. A member of ACOEM since 1989, she was elevated to Fellowship in 1997. Dr Mueller is certified by the American Board of Preventive Medicine in occupational medicine. She is a member and past president of the Rocky Mountain Academy of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, one of ACOEM’s component medical societies.

Health Achievement in Occupational Medicine Award—Created in 1948, this annual award is presented to recognize an ACOEM member for a unique achievement in the field of OEM.

Rosemary K. Sokas, MD, MOH, MSc, FACOEM, Director of the Division of Environmental and Occupational Health Sciences for the University of Illinois at Chicago School of Public Health, was the recipient of the 2007 Award. An educator and researcher, Dr Sokas was recognized for her contributions to OEM while serving first with the U.S. Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and later with the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH). As Director of the OSHA Office of Occupational Medicine, she developed the first formal goals, objectives, and occupational plan for the Office and oversaw the integration of occupational medicine support services into major field compliance activities. While at NIOSH, Dr Sokas played a crucial role in the aftermath of 9/11 and the anthrax attacks.

Dr Sokas received her medical degree from Boston University School of Medicine, and her MOH (in occupational health), and MSc (in occupational physiology) from the Harvard School of Public Health. She joined ACOEM in 1982 and became a Fellow in 1988. Dr Sokas is certified by the American Board of Preventive Medicine in occupational medicine and by the American Board of Internal Medicine. She is a member of the Central States Occupational Medical Association, an ACOEM component society.

Robert A. Kehoe, MD, Award of Merit—Created in 1957 and named for Robert A. Kehoe, MD, a past president of ACOEM and a pioneer in the field of OEM, this award is presented annually to an individual who has shown distinction in and made significant contributions to OEM.

David C. Christiani, MD, MPH, MS, Professor in the Department of Environmental Health at the Harvard School of Public Health, and Director of the Harvard Education and Research Center for Occupational Safety and Health, was the recipient of this year’s Kehoe Award for his international role as a teacher and mentor. Dr Christiani was specifically honored for creating, through his international collaborative research efforts, a strong network of former students and fellows who have taken up leadership positions in research and education in their home countries, and for directing Harvard’s OEM residency program for 10 years prior to assuming his current position.

Dr Christiani is a graduate of Tufts Medical School. He received his MPH and MS from the Harvard School of Public Health. An ACOEM member since 1988, Dr Christiani is certified by the American Board of Preventive Medicine in occupational medicine, and by the American Board of Internal Medicine in internal medicine and pulmonary disease. He is a member of the New England College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine, one of ACOEM’s thirty component societies.

Adolph G. Kammer Merit in Authorship Award—Named in honor of Adolph Kammer, MD, first editor of the College’s peer-reviewed Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (JOEM), this award recognizes outstanding articles published in the journal.

This year’s recipients were Richard Kanwal, MD, MPH; Greg Kullman, PhD, CIH; Chris Piacitelli, MS, CIH; Randy Boylstein, MS; Nancy Sahakian, MD, MPH; Stephen Martin, MS; Kathleen Fedan, BS; and Kathleen Kreiss, MD, of the Division of Respiratory Disease Studies at the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health, Morgantown, W.Va., for their article “Evaluation of Flavorings-Related Lung Disease Risk at Six Microwave Popcorn Plants,” which appeared in the February 2006 issue of JOEM. Their award-winning article definitively established the existence of a new occupational lung disease due to exposure to diacetyl in flavoring additives in the microwave popcorn industry. This project was supported by NIOSH.

The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM) and Integrated Benefits Institute (IBI) are co-sponsoring “HPM Clinic: Moving Health to the Bottom Line” on October 4, 2007, at the InterContinental Hotel in New Orleans, La. This full day training program is designed for HR/benefits professionals, physicians, and other occupational health professionals who want to know how to assess and manage the value from an investment in workforce productivity and be able to make the case for change to senior management. The Clinic follows the two-day HERO Forum for Employee Health Management Solutions to be held on October 2–3, 2007.

The HPM Clinic™ will provide a strong foundation in health and productivity management (HPM) for those who are seeking a basic or applied level of understanding. Built on four core attributes of the ACOEM/IBI collaboration, it has been developed by the leading employer-based practitioners from their own experience; builds bridges among internal stakeholders; provides business-case information and resources that can be put to immediate use; and supports flexibility through a modular approach that engages participants in the format that works best for them.

ACOEM designates this educational activity for a maximum of 6.0 AMA PRA category 1 credit(s)™ and satisfies up to 6.0 ABPM MOC credits. IBI, HERO, and ACOEM members all qualify for member pricing for the October 4 HPM Clinic. For more information or to register, contact ACOEM, 25 Northwest Point Boulevard, Suite 700, Elk Grove Village, IL 60007; telephone: 847/818-1800; Web site: ACOEM members may register for the October 2–3 Solutions at the HERO member price at

The Central States Occupational Medical Association (CSOMA), an ACOEM component society, has announced the election of the following officers and directors. Elected to a one-year term (2007–2008) were President, William S. Scott, MD; President-Elect, Stephen Wintermeyer, MD, FACOEM; Vice President, Brian C. Svazas, MD, FACOEM; and Secretary-Treasurer, Michael G. Parker, DO, FACOEM.

Elected to a three-year term (2007–2010) on the Board of Governors were: Melissa A. Bean, DO, FACOEM; Rick L. Garrels, MD, FACOEM; James Mozzillo, MD; Dennis Phillips, DO, FACOEM; and Jeffrey D. Williamson-Link, MD.

CSOMA will hold its Annual Fall Seminar, September 14–15, 2007, at the Milwaukee Hyatt Regency Hotel in Milwaukee, Wisc. For more information contact Marlyce Nutt, CSOMA Executive Director, 6 Phillippi Creek, Elgin, IL 60120; telephone: 630/497-0286; fax: 630/497-0364; e-mail:; Web site:

©2007The American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine