The New Mentors of the Year for 2020

August 24, 2020

The Irving Institute for Clinical and Translational Research in collaboration with our TRaining And Nurturing Scholars FOr Research that is Multidisciplinary (TRANSFORM) and the Columbia University Irving Medical Center Office of Academic Affairs, are delighted to announce the recipients of the

Truly great mentors can change the direction of their colleagues’ lives and careers. Research has demonstrated that effective mentorship can lead to greater research productivity, teaching effectiveness, and job satisfaction. Each year, mentors from the CUIMC community are nominated by student, postdocs, and faculty for their outstanding guidance and support provided to their fellow colleagues. 

We owe thanks to the selection committee with representatives from across the health sciences campus for their efforts in reviewing the many nominations received.

The 2020 Mentors of the Year Award


Anne-Catrin Uhlemann, MD, PhD; Associate Professor of Medicine

Dr. Uhlemann is the Florence Irving Assistant Professor of Medicine in the Division of Infectious Diseases in the College of Physicians and Surgeons at Columbia University. Her laboratory investigates the evolution of bacterial pathogens such as Staphylococcus aureus and carbapenem-resistant Klebsiella pneumoniae.




Steven L. Spitalnik, MD; Professor of Pathology and Cell Biology

Dr. Steven Spitalnik, MD is the Co-Director of the Laboratory of Transfusion Biology, which pursues NIH-funded research aimed at improving transfusion practice. Dr. Spitalnik is a Professor of Pathology and Cell Biology and the Vice-Chairman of Laboratory Medicine at Columbia University Medical Center (CUMC). As the Medical Director of the Clinical laboratories on the CUMC campus of the New York-Presbyterian Hospital, he coordinates the clinical service, educational, and scholarly activities of the Division. He is a long-standing member of the Academy of Clinical Laboratory Physicians & Scientists, serving as its President in 2002-03 and, in 2005, receiving its Gerald T. Evans Award for outstanding leadership and service to the Academy. In addition to being board certified in both Anatomic and Clinical Pathology, Dr. Spitalnik is a member of the Editorial Boards of Transfusion, Transfusion Medicine Reviews, and Current Opinion in Hematology, and is the lead author of Clinical Pathology Board Review.



José A. Luchsinger, MD, MPH; Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology 

He is a general internist. He has been conducting research and clinical practice in Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD) since 1999. His areas of interest include ADRD risk factors, caregiving and diagnosis. His research portfolio in ADRD has been funded by the Alzheimer’s Association, PCORI, and the National Institutes of Health.






Dustin T. Duncan, ScD; Associate Professor of Epidemiology

Dustin T. Duncan, ScD (he/him) is a social and spatial epidemiologist, studying how neighborhood characteristics influence population health and health disparities. Dr. Duncan's intersectional research focuses on Black gay, bisexual and other sexual minority men and transgender women of color. His research has a strong domestic focus--including in New York City and the Deep South--and his recent work spans the globe such as in West Africa, especially with Columbia's International Center for AIDS Care and Treatment Programs (ICAP). Methodologically, his research utilizes a geospatial lens to apply advanced geographic information systems, web-based and real-time geospatial technologies, and geospatial modeling techniques. Working in collaborations with scholars across the world, he has over 150 high-impact scientific articles, book chapters, and books. In 2019, he was awarded the mid-career Emerging Public Health Professional Award from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

To learn more about past mentors, click here