Foundation for the NIH Opens Nominations for the Inaugural Trailblazer Prize for Clinician-Scientists

BETHESDA, MD, January 23, 2018 — The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health (FNIH) is pleased to open nominations for the inaugural Trailblazer Prize for Clinician-Scientists (Trailblazer Prize). This annual prize and $10,000 honorarium presented by the FNIH recognizes the outstanding contributions of early career clinician-scientists in the United States whose work has the potential to or has led to innovations in patient care. To nominate a colleague for this prize and learn about eligibility criteria, visit Nominations will be accepted through Friday, March 30 at 1:00 p.m. ET.

According to the American Medical Association, the percentage of physicians engaged in research and teaching has decreased in past decades. This concerning statistic means that there are fewer clinician-scientists that play the vital role of understanding basic biology and scientific discovery while considering the potential benefit to patients. Through the Trailblazer Prize, the FNIH celebrates the transformational work of clinician-scientists, whose research translates basic scientific observations into new paradigm-shifting approaches for diagnosing, preventing, treating or curing disease and disability.

“The FNIH is honored to bestow this new prize that recognizes promising early career clinical investigators and the unique role that they play in the evolution of medical practice, driving innovations that improve patient care worldwide,” said Maria C. Freire, Ph.D., President and Executive Director of the FNIH. “With the Trailblazer Prize, we hope to shed a light onto the essential medical contributions of clinician-scientists and inspire, encourage and promote the entrance of new talent into this critically important field.”

The Trailblazer Prize recipient will be selected by a jury of five distinguished clinical-scientists, including:

  • Steven M. Paul, M.D. (Jury Chair), Chairman of the Board, FNIH, President and Chief Executive Officer, Voyager Therapeutics, Inc., Venture Partner at Third Rock Ventures
  • Barry Coller, M.D., David Rockefeller Professor of Medicine, Head of the Allen and Frances Adler Laboratory of Blood and Vascular Biology, Physician-in-Chief of the Rockefeller University Hospital, Vice President for Medical Affairs, The Rockefeller University
  • John I. Gallin, M.D., NIH Associate Director for Clinical Research and Chief Scientific Officer of the NIH Clinical Center
  • Helen H. Hobbs, M.D., Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Professor of Internal Medicine and Molecular Genetics, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
  • Michael J. Welsh, M.D., Director, Pappajohn Biomedical Institute, University of Iowa

The Trailblazer Prize, made possible by an anonymous donation, will be presented at the FNIH Annual Fall Board Dinner on Wednesday, October 24, 2018 in Washington, D.C. For more information about the Trailblazer Prize, visit


About the Foundation for the National Institutes of Health

The Foundation for the National Institutes of Health creates and manages alliances with public and private institutions in support of the mission of the NIH, the world’s premier medical research agency. The Foundation, also known as the FNIH, works with its partners to accelerate biomedical research and strategies against diseases and health concerns in the United States and across the globe. The FNIH organizes and administers research projects; supports education and training of new researchers; organizes educational events and symposia; and administers a series of funds supporting a wide range of health issues. Established by Congress in 1990, the FNIH is a not-for-profit 501(c)(3) charitable organization. For additional information about the FNIH, please visit

Media Contact:

Abbey Meltzer
Foundation for the NIH
(301) 435-4103
[email protected]

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