New Orleans, Louisiana, hosted the Foundation’s Annual Meeting of Membership on March 18.
New Orleans is renowned for its music, food, and joie de vivre. And now it can add the Dermatology Foundation’s Annual Meeting of Membership to its roster of attractions.
The Big Easy was host to an event where people reconnect, acknowledge the year’s successes, and celebrate the people who have received Foundation support.
Foundation President Dr. Janet Fairley opened the meeting and welcomed two new members to the Board: Dr. Ginette A. Okoye, Chair of Dermatology and professor at Howard University College of Medicine, long-time DF volunteer, and distinguished dermatologist Dr. Eric S. Fromer.
After she presented an overview of the DF’s 2022 activity, Dr. Fairley reiterated the Foundation’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion, and announced the Diversity Research Supplement Award (DRSA) will now accept applications twice a year — potentially doubling the number of applicants supported in previous years.
She went on to report on 2022 fundraising efforts. As a result, the Foundation was able to provide $2.8 million in research awards to 57 investigators across 15 categories, including the new BMS Psoriasis Research Award. Some of the award recipients were in attendance.
The mentors’ mentors
They have in common a career-long desire and record of mentoring, sharing knowledge and shaping the study, research, and practice of dermatology. Their colleagues nominated them, and the Foundation has bestowed upon them Honorary Awards in one of four categories.
In 2023, four distinguished individuals received an Honorary Award: Dr. Timothy G. Berger, Lifetime Career Educator award; Dr. Michael T. Goldfarb, Practitioner of the Year award; Dr. R. Jeffrey Herten, Clark W. Finnerud award; and Dr. John J. Voorhees, Distinguished Service Medallion award.
The Foundation has conferred the Distinguished Service Medallion only seven times in 59 years.
Dr. Fairley closed the award ceremony by announcing Dr. Junko Takeshita is the first to receive a DF BMS Psoriasis Research Award. Dr. Takeshita is Assistant Professor of Dermatology and Epidemiology at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine. She will receive annual funding of $100,000 over three years.
Dr. Fairley thanked everyone for their support and for coming to New Orleans for the membership meeting, and she acknowledged donors’ generosity. The relationship between the Foundation and its corporate partners has resulted in decades of discoveries and treatments from researchers across dermatology sub-specialties. Their donations help make support possible — in 2022 alone, their contributions increased by more than 200% over the previous year.
Good music, good food, and vintage airplanes
With the soul-stirring sounds of Louisiana jazz in the background, the impressive architecture of the US Freedom Pavilion, reception guests — DF donors, residents, award recipients, and top corporate supporters alike — enjoyed the mood of this year’s Annual Reception.