Annual Award Recipients
This award is being given in recognition of Jim Cramer’s work to raise public awareness of migraine, a disorder of the brain affecting tens of millions of people.
“As one of an estimated one billion people worldwide who live with migraine, I understand its debilitating effects. By sharing my story, I hope to advance quicker diagnosis and treatment. The brain is full of mysteries that neurologists around the world seek to solve. I just wish mine didn’t hurt so much, which is why I am drawn to be an advocate. I am deeply honored to receive this recognition from the American Brain Foundation.” – Jim Cramer
Public Leadership in Neurology Award
The Public Leadership in Neurology Award honors an individual or group outside of the medical profession. Honorees are known for advancing public understanding and awareness of neurologic disease, being effective advocates for neuroscience research, and making significant contributions to improve patient care.
“Thank you so much to the American Brain Foundation for honoring me as an advocate for people who are healing from brain injury. As someone living through her own recovery from brain injury, it’s really remarkable to be recognized for the work I’m doing in neuro-recovery, and I can’t tell you how much this award means to me.” – Emilia Clarke
Commitment to Cures Award
Sidney Crosby is being recognized for building awareness around concussion. After suffering a concussion during a hockey game in 2011, which resulted in his being sidelined for ten months, Crosby was open about his recovery process. Because of his openness about his “invisible injury,” he has been instrumental in raising awareness of the dangers of concussion.
“Having personally experienced how a concussion affected my life, I appreciate the importance of continuing to make medical advancements in neurology. Though it was a very difficult period of my life and my career, I’m pleased that my story has helped bring much needed awareness to the importance of proper diagnosis and care for those who have suffered a traumatic brain injury. Thank you very much for the award.” – Sidney Crosby
Scientific Breakthrough Award
This award recognizes the research achievements of neurologists and neuroscientists in the prevention, treatment and cure of brain diseases.
This year’s recipients, Doctors Michael Hill, Andrew Demchuk and Mayank Goyal of the Calgary Stroke Team coordinated the large, multi-center ESCAPE trial, which is the only trial to demonstrate the superiority of mechanical thrombectomy therapy to reduce disability and death in ischemic stroke patients compared to the traditional method. “Through their trial, this endovascular method was found to be more effective at removing recent clots and can lead to rapid recovery for stroke patients,” said Robert C. Griggs, MD, FAAN, a member of the American Brain Foundation Board of Directors. “The Calgary Stroke Team’s dedication to rigorous scientific inquiry is outstanding, leading them to a discovery that will make an impact for generations to come.”
“We are very honored to receive this Scientific Breakthrough Award on behalf of the Calgary Stroke Program. Our program is determined to change the present and future of stroke care through a culture of rigorous scientific inquiry in partnership with a terrific network of stroke trial sites around the world. Thank you!” – Calgary Stroke Team
Board Chair Award
The Board Chair Award is given to a key architect and builder of the American Brain Foundation—a person who has shaped the organization through their leadership and philanthropy.
This year’s recipient has dedicated the last 21 years of her career to advancing brain disease research. Her role in growing the American Brain Foundation and the American Academy of Neurology is unprecedented. Congratulations to the 2020 recipient of the Board Chair Award, CEO Emeritus of the AAN, Catherine M. Rydell, CAE.
“It has been a joy to actively participate and support the evolution of the ABF. Its unending commitment to a life without brain disease provides hope to us all. I am deeply honored and humbled to receive the American Brain Foundation Board Chair Award.” – Catherine M. Rydell
Ted M. Burns Humanism in Neurology Award
In order to maintain the idealism and compassion of neurology, humanism must remain primary as practices evolve. The Ted Burns Humanism in Neurology Award acknowledges the influence of the most benevolent and innovative in the field. The award aims to celebrate neurologists whose work embodies humanism–in patient care, education, advocacy and everyday encounters. By recognizing outstanding neurologists, the award aims to inspire others to improve healthcare delivery and the lives of their colleagues and patients.
This year’s recipient, Professor Jon Stone, MBChB, FRCP, is an outstanding educator, researcher and clinician. His advocacy and humanism toward patients with Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) have been transformative for the field. He is truly unique in this niche that bridges a humanistic approach with clinical care and research.
“It’s a tremendous honor to be the first recipient of the Ted Burns Humanism in Neurology Award. Functional Neurological Disorder (FND) is one of the commonest, but most stigmatised and ignored conditions in neurologic practice. With this award, the American Brain Foundation has recognised the need to take people with FND seriously, combining a patient-centred approach with a scientific approach to diagnosis, pathophysiology, and treatment.” – Jon Stone
American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Scientific Awards
Potamkin Prize for Research in Pick’s, Alzheimer’s, and Related Diseases
Often called the “Nobel Prize of Alzheimer’s research,” The Potamkin Prize recognizes the achievements of scientific researchers who do innovative work, find groundbreaking discoveries, and push forward the field of study in Pick’s, Alzheimer’s and related brain degenerative diseases.
The Potamkin Prize is funded by the American Brain Foundation through the generosity of Alan and Robert Potamkin in remembrance of their mother, Luba Potamkin. The American Academy of Neurology selects recipients of this award.
This year’s recipient is J. Paul Taylor, MD, PhD, Chair of the Cell & Molecular Biology Department at St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital—a leader in research intro treatments for Alzheimer’s and other chronic neurodegenerative disorders. The Potamkin Prize recognizes Dr. Taylor’s groundbreaking studies that link the molecular mechanisms of several neurodegenerative diseases together—ranging from astute clinical observation to molecular mechanisms of disease and new therapeutics avenues.
Sheila Essey Award: An Award for ALS Research
The award recognizes significant research contributions in the search for the cause, prevention of and cure for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS). Since 1996, The ALS Association and the American Academy of Neurology have jointly chosen recipients of the award.
The Sheila Essey Award for ALS research is granted by the American Brain Foundation and made possible through the generosity of the Essey Family Fund through The ALS Association Golden West Chapter, in memory of Sheila Essey, who battled ALS for 10 years and died from the disease in 2004.
This year’s recipient is Guy Rouleau, MD, PhD from the Montreal Neurological Institute and Hospital. Dr. Rouleau has made tremendous contributions as an academic, as a clinician, and as a leader. His laboratory has been involved in the discoveries and understanding of almost every major ALS gene, and his group’s identification of the role of the hGle1 gene in ALS was the first time the nuclear pore was implicated in ALS. His commitment to collaboration and open science also led to the development of the Tanenbaum Open Science Institute (TOSI), which helps advance medicine through patient-centered science.
Additional AAN Scientific Awards:
Bruce S. Schoenberg International Award in Neuroepidemiology
Dreifuss-Penry Epilepsy Award
Harold Wolff-John Graham: An Award for Headache/Facial Pain Research
Irwin Schatz Award for Autonomic Disorders
John Stolk Award in Movement Disorders for Young Investigators
Neuro-oncology Investigator Award
Neuro-oncology Scientific Award
Norman Geschwind Prize in Behavioral Neurology
Michael S. Pessin Stroke Leadership Prize
Mitchell B. Max Award for Neuropathic Pain
Movement Disorders Research Award
Neuroendocrine Research Award
Sleep Science Award
S. Weir Mitchell Award
Wayne A. Hening Sleep Medicine Investigator Award
Lifetime and Humanitarian Awards
Association of Indian Neurologists in America Lifetime Achievement Award
Funded by the American Brain Foundation
The AINA Lifetime Achievement Award recognizes a leader in neurology by her/his peers. The recipient will be a North American neurologist chosen based on his/her dedication to advancing the training of North American neurologists of Indian origin and promoting innovation and research in the field of neurology.
“I am indeed very grateful to be chosen for the AINA Lifetime Achievement Award. More than any one individual, this award highlights the work of AINA members in advancing patient care, teaching, and research by neurologists of Indian origin in the United States, India, and elsewhere.” – Prakash Kotagal
Mridha Spirit of Neurology Humanitarian Award
Funded by the American Brain Foundation and through the philanthropy of Dr. and Mrs. Mridha
Sponsored by the American Brain Foundation and endowed by gifts to Dr. Debasish and Chinu Mridha Endowment Fund. Debasish Mridha, MD, and his wife, Chinu, are dedicated to improving the lives of others and recognizing others, through this award, who do the same.
“Being of service has been incredibly purposeful for me and has brought much joy to my career. Service is its own reward, but being recognized for it validates its importance. I am both touched and grateful for this honor.” – Karen Parko