Sunday’s opening plenary session featured a luminary of science, C. Ronald Kahn, MD, chief academic officer of the Joslin Diabetes Center and Mary K. Iacocca professor at Harvard Medical School in Boston. Recipient of the 2013 Wallace H. Coulter Lectureship Award, Kahn for more than 3 decades has been a pioneering researcher in the field of insulin receptors and their role in type 2 diabetes and other diseases, earning him world-wide recognition. He leads a large consortium of investigators using gene and protein expression studies to define obesity, diabetes, and other insulin-resistant states.
Recognition of Kahn’s exceptional contributions to medical research is but one way AACC and the Wallace H. Coulter Foundation will be honoring Coulter during the centennial of his birth. Five years of effort by AACC’s Emerging Countries Program along with the unfailing support of the Coulter Foundation also are being showcased this week.
With a visionary grant from the Coulter Foundation, AACC created the Emerging Countries Program to promote global cross-cultural learning and leadership opportunities. This initiative reflects the Association’s vision of better health and healthcare through laboratory medicine as well as Coulter’s life-long commitment to improving healthcare and embracing the diversity of world cultures.
“I’m very excited about what’s been accomplished, and the support from both AACC and the Coulter Foundation. I’m really pleased with how things have developed and progressed over the last five years,” said Latin American Working Group (LAWG) Committee chair Barbara M. Goldsmith, PhD, FACB. “The AACC board has been unwavering and extremely positive, and there’s such commitment of staff resources and time from the organization. Likewise, the Coulter Foundation has been very supportive of our intent to focus initially on Latin America. Their involvement has been critical, and without it we wouldn’t have been doing this.” The LAWG provides advice and oversight in planning and implementing Emerging Countries Program educational projects. Goldsmith also praised the LAWG Committee, whose members have volunteered countless hours and energetically guided and promoted Emerging Countries Program initiatives (see Box, below).