SNMMI Announces 2024 Fellows and Awards, Votes in New Leadership

The Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging recognized six new SNMMI Fellows at the society’s 2024 Annual Meeting, held June 8-11 in Toronto. The SNMMI Fellowship was established in 2016 to recognize distinguished service to the society as well as exceptional achievement in the field of nuclear medicine and molecular imaging. It is among the most prestigious formal recognitions available to long-time SNMMI members.

In keeping with tradition, SNMMI’s 2023-24 president, Helen R. Nadel, MD, director of pediatric nuclear medicine at Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford and clinical professor of radiology at the Stanford School of Medicine, in Stanford, California, was honored as an SNMMI Fellow following her term. Also recognized were:

  • Donna Cross, PhD, University of Utah, Salt Lake City, Utah
  • Frederick D. Grant, MD, Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Michael Hofman, MBBS, Peter MacCallum Cancer Centre, Melbourne, Australia
  • Heather Jacene, MD, Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Boston, Massachusetts
  • Andrew Scott, MD, Austin Hospital, Melbourne, Australia
  • Douglas Van Nostrand, MD, Washington Hospital Center, Washington, DC

Also at the 2024 SNMMI Annual Meeting, Cathy Sue Cutler, PhD, FSNMMI, chair of the Isotope Research and Production Department at Brookhaven National Laboratory in Upton, New York, has been named as president for SNMMI.

“While the nuclear medicine field is making substantial progress in improving patient outcomes, we are handicapped by an inadequate reimbursement system that limits patient access to these innovative imaging tools,” said Cutler. “As president, I will continue to work to support the Facilitating Innovative Nuclear Diagnostics (FIND) Act of 2023, which will ensure equitable access to care and treatment for patients.”

In her role as president, Cutler will continue the Society’s work to ameliorate the workforce shortage among radiochemists, medical physicists, radiopharmacists, nuclear technologists and physicians and ensure that potential entrants understand pathways into the field. She also intends to create training and education opportunities in theranostics and to educate the public on nuclear medicine and the value it holds for patients.

Jean-Luc C. Urbain, MD, PhD, FASNC, professor of Radiology/Nuclear Medicine and Medicine, has been named president-elect and Heather Jacene, MD, assistant chief of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, clinical director of Nuclear Medicine at Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, and associate professor of Radiology at Harvard Medical School in Boston, Massachusetts, has been named as vice president-elect for SNMMI.

For the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging Technologist Section (SNMMI-TS), Julie Dawn Bolin, MS, CNMT, program director of Nuclear Medicine Technology at GateWay Community College in Phoenix, Arizona, and nuclear medicine technologist at Banner University Medical Center in Tucson, Arizona, has been elected as the 2024-25 president and Cybil Nielsen, MBA, CNMT, FSNMMI-TS, nuclear medicine educator at Gurnick Academy of Medical Arts in Concord, California, has been elected as the 2024-25 president-elect.

Michael J. Evans, PhD, a chemical biologist known for his innovative approaches to imaging and treating a diverse array of diseases, has been named the 2024 recipient of the prestigious Sam Gambhir Trailblazer Award. 

Evans, a Professor in the Department of Radiology and Biomedical Imaging at the University of California San Francisco, was honored for his groundbreaking work in biomarker discovery and radiopharmaceutical development. His research has led to the translation of several novel radiopharmaceuticals into clinical use, including 11C-YJH08 (targeting the glucocorticoid receptor), 64Cu-GRIP B (targeting granzyme B), and 18F-TRX (targeting ferrous iron). Evans has also pioneered new chemical strategies to expand the therapeutic window for targeted radiotherapies.

“I am honored and humbled to receive the 2024 Sam Gambhir Trailblazer Award,” said Evans. “I aspire to emulate his remarkable accomplishments as a scientist and mentor. I’m grateful to the many exceptional colleagues and collaborators that I have been able to partner with throughout my career. I look forward to continuing our efforts to advance nuclear medicine and make a meaningful impact on patient care worldwide.”

David M. Goldenberg, MD, known for his pioneering work in monoclonal antibodies and immunotherapy, was awarded the Benedict Cassen Prize during the Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging 2024 Annual Meeting. This honor is awarded every two years by the Education and Research Foundation (ERF) for Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging in recognition of outstanding achievement and work leading to a major advance in nuclear medicine science.

“It is a tremendous honor to receive the Benedict Cassen Prize,” Goldenberg commented. “I have witnessed the growth and contributions of nuclear medicine over the past 50 years and am delighted that the development of radiopharmaceuticals now provides very selective targeting agents that disclose sites of cancer. These agents can now also advance this technology to a more specific and effective therapy, which I believe is providing a renaissance for nuclear medicine. It is benefitting patients with a whole new generation of agents that provide more personalized therapy. Indeed, the pharmaceutical industry has begun to invest substantially in this new class of cancer treatments.”

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