Glass Block M Award
Distinguished Alumni Awardees

Michigan alumni awarded for their outstanding service and leadership.

Distinguished Achievement Award
Jonathan Rubin, M.D., Ph.D.

Jonathan Rubin, M.D., Ph.D.

Jonathan Rubin, M.D., Ph.D. is an emeritus professor of radiology at the University of Michigan and the former William Martel Collegiate Professor of Radiology. Since 1984, he has been on the radiology faculty at U-M and was either co-director or director of ultrasound in the Radiology Department for 30 years. He has over 240 peer-reviewed publications and 16 patents. He has been deputy editor of Academic Radiology and associate editor of Ultrasound in Medicine and Biology and the Journal of Ultrasound in Medicine

Dr. Rubin received the Lawrence Mack Lifetime Achievement Award from the Society of Radiologists in Ultrasound, the Joseph H. Holmes Clinical Pioneer Award from the American Institute of Ultrasound in Medicine, and the U-M Medical School Innovations Award. He is a distinguished investigator in the Academy of Radiology Research and has been the primary investigator on many industry and NIH grants. The U-M Department of Biomedical Engineering recently named a collegiate professorship in his honor.

His research has focused on the basic physics and clinical applications of medical ultrasound. His achievements include the development and clinical introduction of power Doppler, a method now widely used in multiple clinical situations for evaluating blood flow that has become a standard function on most diagnostic ultrasound machines. He was also instrumental in introducing ultrasound into the neurosurgical operating room for real-time guidance during intracranial and spinal surgery. 

Dr. Rubin’s recent interests relate to blood volume flow measurements using ultrasound for assessing placental function. The placental measurement technique analyzes umbilical venous Doppler spectra to determine the placenta’s response to maternal and fetal arterial input flows. This method enables evaluation of placental function and structure in new ways.

Distinguished Service Award
Sanjay Saint, M.D., MPH, MACP

Sanjay Saint, M.D., MPH, MACP

Sanjay Saint, M.D., MPH, MACP, is the chief of medicine at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System and the George Dock Professor of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan.

He is an international expert in patient safety with a focus on why some hospitals are better than others at preventing hospital-acquired complications. He has authored approximately 400 peer-reviewed papers with nearly 120 appearing in the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, The Lancet, or the Annals of Internal Medicine. He serves on the editorial board of seven journals including NEJM Catalyst and BMJ Quality & Safety, and is an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians. 

Dr. Saint has written for The Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review, and has given a TEDx talk on culture change in health care. He has co-authored several books including Teaching Inpatient Medicine: Connecting, Coaching, and Communicating in the Hospital (2nd Edition) and The Saint-Chopra Guide to Inpatient Medicine (4th Edition). He has also co-authored 3 books published by U-M, titled Thirty Rules for Healthcare Leaders, The Mentoring Guide: Helping Mentors and Mentees Succeed, and Pickleball for Life: Prevent Injury, Play Your Best, & Enjoy the Game

In 2016 he received the Mark Wolcott Award from the Department of Veterans Affairs as the National VA Physician of the Year and was elected as an international honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians. In 2017 he was awarded the National Health System Impact Award from the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Distinguished Mentor Award from U-M. In 2019 he was named a Master of the American College of Physicians.

Early Distinguished Career Award
Allecia M. Wilson (M.D. 2004)

Allecia M. Wilson (M.D. 2004)

Allecia M. Wilson (M.D. 2004) is a Detroit native and United States Army veteran. She earned several awards during her military service, including the NATO Soldier of the Year (European Division).

Following an honorable discharge, Dr. Wilson returned home with the goal to be the first in her family to graduate college. She earned her bachelor’s in medical technology at Michigan State University before receiving her medical degree from the University of Michigan Medical School, where she also completed her residency training in anatomic pathology. With a passion for medicine, science, and law, she subspecialized in forensic medicine and completed a forensic pathology fellowship at the Miami-Dade County Medical Examiner’s Office in 2008. She then served as deputy medical examiner of the Genesee County Medical Examiner’s Office in Flint, Michigan.

Dr. Wilson returned to U-M in 2012 as faculty supporting the Wayne County Medical Examiner’s Office. She completed an additional fellowship in pediatric and perinatal pathology at U-M and is currently an associate professor in pathology and the director of Autopsy and Forensic Services at U-M. She also serves as the medical examiner for Washtenaw County. She leads the Michigan Medicine Autopsy Service, overseeing all non-natural and sudden unexpected deaths in Washtenaw County.

Dr. Wilson is active in numerous medicolegal, pediatric, and community committees and is the past president of the Michigan Association of Medical Examiners, the chair of the State of Michigan Committee on Child Fatalities, chair of the Washtenaw County Child Death Review Team, co-founder of the Washtenaw County Suicide Death Review Team, and member of Michigan Maternal Mortality Review Committee. She is regarded as an expert in forensic pathology and has consulted on major deaths — like George Floyd and Tyree Nichols — that impact social justice.

Basic Science Research Award
Luis Diaz (M.D. 1998)

Luis Diaz (M.D. 1998)

Luis Diaz (M.D. 1998) is a physician-scientist who leads the Division of Solid Tumor Oncology at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, where he cares for people with advanced colon cancer and pancreatic cancer.

Dr. Diaz’s research applies cancer genetics to find new ways to diagnose and treat the disease.  He is interested in uncovering how medicine can use cancer genetics to screen for, detect, diagnose, and monitor cancer by looking at DNA in tumor tissue and by using liquid biopsies.

With his colleagues, Dr. Diaz is working to develop a “molecular pap smear” that can diagnose early-stage ovarian cancer and endometrial cancer based on these genetic markers — a crucial advance that could catch more instances of these cancers and begin treating them as quickly as possible. The test is currently in clinical trials. Dr. Diaz hopes it will become part of the standard of care within the next few years.

His teams have also pioneered the use of circulating tumor DNA as a cancer biomarker for screening, monitoring, and detection of occult disease, and discovered the therapeutic link between cancer genetics and immunotherapy in patients with mismatch repair deficient tumors. This research led to the first tumor agnostic FDA approval for any solid tumor with this genetic lesion and the first cancer study that resulted in a 100% complete remission rate.

As part of his role as head of Solid Tumor Oncology, Dr. Diaz also works to improve mentorship for young scientists and enhance communication between researchers and departments across Memorial Sloan Kettering. He is the recipient of numerous awards and honors and was appointed by President Biden to the National Cancer Advisory Board in 2021.

Previous Awardees
  • 2023: Jonathan Rubin, M.D., Ph.D.  
  • 2022: Gail P. Jarvik, M.D., Ph.D. 
  • 2021: Tadataka Yamada, M.D. 
  • 2020: Arul M. Chinnaiyan, M.D., Ph.D. 
  • 2019: Eva Feldman, M.D., Ph.D.
  • 2023: Sanjay Saint, M.D. 
  • 2022: Deborah R. Berman, M.D.
  • 2021: James A. Knol, M.D. 
  • 2020: Deborah L. Gumucio, Ph.D. 
  • 2019: Joseph Metzger, Ph.D.
  • 2022: Louito C. Edje, M.D.
  • 2021: Jennifer Kim, M.D. 
  • 2020: Jeffrey D. Punch, M.D. 
  • 2019: Robert Z. Gussin, Ph.D.
  • 2018: John M. Cropsey, M.D. 
  • 2023: Allecia M. Wilson, M.D. 
  • 2022: Namandjé Bumpus, Ph.D. 
  • 2021: Renée A. Shellhaas, M.D. 
  • 2020: Carey N. Lumeng, M.D., Ph.D. 
  • 2019: Oluwaferanmi O. Okanlami, M.D.
  • 2023: Luis Diaz, M.D.
  • 2022: Sean J. Morrison, Ph.D. 
  • 2021: John M. Carethers, M.D.
  • 2020: A. Thomas Look, M.D. 

Learn more about how to nominate an alum for one of these awards.

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