UCSF Chancellor, Three Faculty Named to Institute of Medicine, Adler Honored for Outstanding Service

October 11, 2010

UCSF Chancellor Sue Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH, and three UCSF faculty are among the 65 newly elected members to the Institute of Medicine (IOM), an independent, nonprofit organization that works to provide unbiased and authoritative advice to improve health.

The new members were announced today (Oct. 11) at the IOM’s 40th annual meeting in Washington, DC, where Eugene Washington, MD, vice chancellor of UCLA Health Sciences and dean of the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA introduced the program.

Election to the IOM is considered one of the highest honors in the fields of health and medicine and recognizes individuals who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care and public health.

The new UCSF members of the IOM are:

  • UCSF Chancellor Susan Desmond-Hellmann, MD, MPH, a renowned oncologist and biotechnology leader who took the helm of the nation’s largest public biomedical research institution in August 2009;

  • Elena Fuentes-Afflick, MD, MPH, professor, UCSF departments of pediatrics, epidemiology, and biostatistics and chief of pediatrics at San Francisco General Hospital;

  • Neil J. Risch, PhD, Lamond Family Foundation Distinguished Professor of Human Genetics and director, Institute for Human Genetics; and professor, UCSF Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics; and

  • Kevan M. Shokat, PhD, investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute; and professor and chair, UCSF Department of Cellular and Molecular Pharmacology.

Nancy Adler, PhD, professor of medical psychology in the departments of psychiatry and pediatrics at UCSF, and director of its Center for Health and Community, was honored on Oct. 11 for her outstanding service to the IOM. Adler was presented the David Rall Medal, which is given to an IOM member who has demonstrated particularly distinguished leadership as chair of a study committee or other such activity, showing commitment above and beyond the usual responsibilities of the position. 

“Adler’s outstanding leadership skills proved invaluable in chairing the Committee on Women’s Health Research, as the committee often found itself challenged by an abundance of data and struggled to narrow its focus to issues particularly relevant to women,” the IOM reported in its news release. “Her ability to synthesize diverging opinions provided the critical guidance the committee needed to produce a substantive, evidence-based, and well-regarded report.”

Established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences, the institute is recognized as a national resource for independent, scientifically informed analysis and recommendations on health issues. With their election, members make a commitment to volunteer their service as members of IOM study committees, boards and other activities.

New members are elected by current active members through a highly selective process that recognizes individuals who have made major contributions to the advancement of the medical sciences, health care, and public health. The Institute’s charter stipulates that at least one-quarter of the membership is selected from outside the health professions, from such fields as the natural, social, and behavioral sciences; law; engineering; and the humanities.

The IOM total active membership is now 1,649 and the number of foreign associates to 96. IOM’s total membership, including 72 members holding emeritus status, is 1,817.

Related Links:


Institute of Medicine Honors Members Nancy E. Adler and David R. Challoner for Outstanding Service
National Academy of Sciences

Institute of Medicine Elects 65 New Members, Five Foreign Associates
National Academy of Sciences