Announcing New ASH Executive Committee Members, ASH Visitor Training Program

ASH Executive Committee Election Results Revealed

On October 14, the American Society of Hematology announced the election of three new members to its Executive Committee, the governing body of the organization, for terms beginning after the 2015 ASH Annual Meeting December 5-8 in Orlando:

  • Alexis A. Thompson, MD, MPH, will serve a one-year term as vice president, followed by successive terms as president-elect and president.
  • Steven L. Allen, MD, and Jane N. Winter, MD, will each serve a four-year term as councillor.

“Hematology is experiencing a period of unprecedented growth as a result of previous investments in research and new technologies, as well as evolving insights in the way we treat blood disorders. These advances necessitate continued commitments to funding, training, and access to care that will require thoughtful leadership,” said 2015 ASH President David A. Williams, MD, president of Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center and professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School. “I am delighted to welcome Drs. Thompson, Allen, and Winter and am excited about the diverse perspectives they represent.”

Learn more about the newly elected members below.

Alexis A. Thompson, MD, MPH, is head of the hematology section of the Division of Hematology Oncology Transplantation and director of the Comprehensive Thalassemia Program at Ann and Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago, where she also serves as the A. Watson and Sarah Armour Endowed Chair for Childhood Cancer and Blood Disorders. Dr. Thompson is also associate director of Equity and Minority Health at the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center of Northwestern University. Her major fields of interest include sickle cell disease, thalassemia, transfusional iron overload, and stem cell transplantation for pediatric patients. In her position as vice president, Dr. Thompson wants to enhance training programs to attract the next generation of scientists to hematology as well as increase collaboration between ASH and global partners to improve hematology care and capacity around the world. Dr. Thompson served as an ASH Councillor from 2010 through 2013 and is a member of the ASH Sickle Cell Task Force. She has served as a mentor for the Minority Medical Student Award Program for more than 10 years and is currently a reviewer for ASH’s journal, Blood.

Jane N. Winter, MD, is professor of medicine in the Division of Hematology/Oncology at the Feinberg School of Medicine of Northwestern University in Chicago. She also serves as a member of the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dr. Winter’s research interests include the clinical and biologic markers of prognosis in diffuse large B-cell lymphoma and clinical trials with novel agents in lymphoma. An ASH member for more than 30 years, Dr. Winter has recently served as chair of the Committee on Educational Affairs as well as faculty for the ASH Clinical Research Training Institute and the ASH/European Hematology Association Translational Research Training in Hematology.

Steven L. Allen, MD, is associate chief of hematology at the Monter Cancer Center, North Shore-LIJ Health System and Professor of Medicine at Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine in Hempstead, New York. Dr. Allen has maintained an active clinical practice and has been highly involved in the Society’s practice initiatives for more than 30 years. He currently serves as chair of the Committee on Practice and is a participant in the ASH Practice Partnership program. Dr. Allen received the ASH Outstanding Service Award in 2006 for his leadership on the ASH Pay-for-Performance Task Force. (Learn more about Dr. Allen in “Pulling Back the Curtain” from our April 2015 issue.)

Medical Professionals in Developing Countries Train With Hematologists in the Field

Nineteen hematologists and medical professionals have been selected to participate in the ASH Visitor Training Program. Participating hematologists, researchers, and laboratory staff from developing countries are granted the opportunity to receive up to 12 weeks of training on a specific area of hematology from an ASH member located anywhere in the world. After the program, participants return to their home institutions to implement their new skills and knowledge, building hematology capacity in their countries and improving the care of patients with blood diseases worldwide.

The ASH Visitor Training Program is offered to hematologists and scientists from developing countries at any level of their careers. This year’s program includes participants from 13 countries training in various areas of malignant and non-malignant hematology. Hematologists selected for the ASH Visitor Training Program are paired with a research mentor at their host institution as well as a member of the ASH International Members Committee who is charged with helping participants prepare for and evaluate their training program experience.

The 2015 Visitor Training Participants are:

  • Ademola Adewoyin, MBBS, Benin, Nigeria: Transfusion medicine, specifically blood component preparation, aphaeresis, and compatibility testing
    Mentor: Gowthami Arepally, MD, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC
  • Faiq Ahmed, MBBS, MD, Hyderabad, India: Diagnosis and classification of lymphoproliferative disorders
    Mentor: Vishala Neppalli, MD, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY
  • Mafruha Akter, MBBS, FCPS, Dhaka, Bangladesh: Allogeneic stem cell transplantation (SCT)
    Mentor: Gary Schiller, MD, University of California – Los Angeles School of Medicine, Los Angeles, CA
  • Samir Bele, MBBS, MD, Karimnagar, India: Sickle cell disease (SCD) patient management
    Mentor: Alex George, MD, PhD, Texas Children’s Hospital; Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX
  • Halima Bello-Manga, MBBS, MPH, FMCPath, Kaduna, Nigeria: SCD patient management
    Mentor: Adetola Kassim, MD, MS, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, TN
  • Daniel Coriu, MD, PhD, Bucharest, Romania: Bone marrow transplantation (BMT) for treatment of acute myeloid leukemia (AML) patients
    Mentor: Mark Levis, MD, PhD, The Johns Hopkins University, Baltimore, MD
  • Sharat Damodar, MD, DM, Bangalore, India: Haplo-identical and matched unrelated SCT
    Mentor: Daniel Weisdorf, MD, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN
  • Silvia Fernández Martínez, MD, San Lorenzo, Paraguay: FISH and cytogenetics
    Mentor: Fabiola Traina, MD, PhD, University of São Paulo, Ribeirão Preto, Brazil
  • Ana Glembotsky, PhD, Buenos Aires, Argentina: Molecular diagnosis of patients with inherited platelet disorders
    Mentor: Nicole Casadevall, MD, Institut Gustave Roussy, Villejuif, France
  • Obinna Iheanacho, MBBS, Benin, Nigeria: Donor and therapeutic apheresis
    Mentor: Bruce Sachais, MD, PhD, New York Blood Center, New York, NY
  • Mehreen Khan, MBBS, MCPS, FCPS, Rawalpindi, Pakistan: Haplo-identical BMT
    Mentor: Qaiser Bashir, MD, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
  • Lan Luo, MD, Beijing, China: Heparin-induced thrombocytopenia assay
    Mentor: Demin Wang, PhD, Blood Research Institute and Blood Center of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI
  • Flordeluna Mesina, MD, Manila, Philippines: Development of disease registry for hematologic malignancies
    Mentor: Jorge Cortes, MD, The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX
  • Chizoba Nwankwo, MBBS, Abuja, Nigeria: Preparation of blood components/products with emphasis on apheresis
    Mentor: Aleksander Mijovic, MBBS, PhD, FRCPath, King’s College Hospital, London, UK
  • Matilda Ongóndi, MD, Nairobi, Kenya: Performance and interpretation of peripheral smears, iron studies, and electrophoresis
    Mentor: Anand Karnad, MD, University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio, TX
  • Allan Pernudy, MD, Managua, Nicaragua: MRD detection by flow cytometry
    Mentor: Martin A. Horstmann, MD, Children’s Cancer Center, Hamburg, Germany
  • Victor Salinas, MD, Asunción, Paraguay: Allogeneic SCT
    Mentor: David Gomez, MD, Universidad Autónoma de Nuevo León, Monterrey, México
  • Jangbhadur Singh Sarna, MBBS, MD, Srinagar, India: Flow cytometry
    Mentor: Vishala Neppalli, MD, Roswell Park Cancer Institute, Buffalo, NY
  • Cyprien Shyirambere, MD, Kigali, Rwanda: Diagnosis of AML, peripheral blood smear interpretation, and bone marrow biopsy interpretation
    Mentor: Leslie E. Lehmann, MD, Dana-Farber/Boston Children’s Cancer and Blood Disorders Center, Boston, MA