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Recipients of the Society’s most prestigious honor to be recognized during 54th Annual Meeting in Boston

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) has selected J. Robert Cassady, MD, FASTRO, George T.Y. Chen, PhD, FASTRO, and Mark W. Dewhirst, DVM, PhD, FASTRO, as the Society’s 2012 Gold Medal recipients. Drs. Cassady, Chen and Dewhirst will be recognized with this honor at an Awards Ceremony held during ASTRO’s 54th Annual Meeting taking place October 28-31, 2012, at the Boston Convention and Exhibition Center in Boston.

The Gold Medal is the Society’s highest honor. It is bestowed on revered members who have made outstanding contributions to the field of radiation oncology, including research, clinical care, teaching and service. Recipients are drawn from any of the scientific disciplines represented by the members of the Society.

Dr. Cassady’s service spans over four decades with a major influence in the fields of pediatric oncology, prostate cancer and hyperthermia. During his residency at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City, Dr. Cassady published, with Robert Sagerman, MD, FASTRO, a highly regarded paper on the treatment of orbital rhabdomyosarcoma. After serving at the National Center for Radiologic Health in Rockville, Md., and a Fellowship at Stanford University in Stanford, Calif., Dr. Cassady joined the Joint Center for Radiation Therapy at Harvard Medical School, where he became a professor and division head at the Children's Hospital and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston. He is noted as an esteemed educator and clinician. In 1984, he became head of the radiation oncology department at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Ariz., and, in 1995, he became chairman of the department of radiation oncology at the Lahey Clinic in Burlington, Mass. Dr. Cassady was also professor of radiation oncology at Tufts University Medical Center in Boston. Dr. Cassady recently retired from his position at the Lahey Clinic.

Dr. Chen is a former member of the ASTRO Board of Directors and a 33-year member of the Society. During his long and prosperous career, Dr. Chen has been interested in the use of imaging in radiotherapy, particularly in multimodality image registration. In collaboration with Charles Pelizzari, PhD, and Marc Kessler, PhD, he was an early innovator in retrospective image fusion. He has also made contributions to 4-D CT imaging for target delineation of moving tumors, heavy ion radiotherapy treatment planning, and proton and photon radiotherapy. In addition to research, education has been a high priority for Dr. Chen, who served as professor of radiation oncology at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine in Chicago, and Harvard Medical School in Boston. Dr. Chen is currently a medical physicist at the Massachusetts General Hospital, where he served as head of the radiation physics division from 1999-2008.

Dr. Dewhirst is a 26-year member of ASTRO and a former member of the ASTRO Board of Directors. As a veterinary clinician for over 25 years, Dr. Dewhirst has gained world-wide recognition for his work, which has been cited a remarkable 17,400 times. His contributions have been essential to the research of hypoxia, angiogenesis and the development of heat activated drug delivery using liposomes. Dr. Dewhirst was an assistant professor in the department of radiation oncology at the University of Arizona in Tucson, Ariz. from 1979-1894. He currently serves as the Gustavo S. Montana professor in the department of radiation oncology at Duke University in Durham, N.C., with joint appointments in pathology and biomedical engineering. As a mentor, his knowledge has been transferred to trainees with interests in radiation oncology, pathology, pharmacology, surgery and medical oncology. In addition to his research, Dr. Dewhirst is the associate dean for faculty mentoring in the School of Medicine.

“It is exciting to have such a diverse group of winners this year,” Leonard L. Gunderson, MD, MS, FASTRO, chairman of the ASTRO Board of Directors and Awards Committee, said. “Having a radiation oncologist, medical physicist and a biologist win the Society’s most prestigious award is a true testament to the diversity of fields that can be found within ASTRO. It will be an extreme pleasure to present these outstanding individuals with their awards at the Annual Meeting.”

Content last updated 12/28/2012
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