The John Song Award was established in memory of Dr. John Song, who worked on behalf of CTSI for seven years as a member of the CTSI Research Education, Training, and Career Development (CTSI-Ed) Internal Advisory Board and mentor to summer program scholars, until his tragic death in March 2019.
John was devoted to promoting ethical clinical research to those who are underprivileged and was known for his outstanding ability to teach bioethics topics. His contributions to our community will have a lasting impact as an enthusiastic role model and supportive colleague and physician.
To honor his legacy, the John Song Award was established this year and will be given annually to a CTSI staff, faculty member, or contributor who has made substantive, sustained, and outstanding contributions to CTSI over a period of at least three years; demonstrated an ability to build relationships; shown courage; exhibited resiliency; performed in an outstanding capacity, with an emphasis on innovation and efficiency; and demonstrated strong ethics and concern for colleagues and others.
At the CTSI Translational Science Symposium and Poster Session on Sept. 20, 2023, the inaugural John Song Award was bestowed on Megan Hoffman.
Megan joined CTSI in 2012 and currently serves as the Program Director of Research Training and Participant Engagement. In this role, she helps to build and train a highly skilled clinical and translational research workforce; bridge UMN research teams to the community (and vice versa); partner with key stakeholders within CTSI, the University of Minnesota, and community partners and across the CTSA Consortium to understand gaps and barriers to catalyzing high impact research; and develop solutions.
Megan’s work also includes driving research awareness efforts, developing novel recruitment strategies, and supporting the integration of research into clinical care.
Megan has shown dedication to CTSI’s mission and goals, most notably in shaping the Translational Workforce Development program, developing several high-value and high-impact trainings for research professionals and PIs, and her tremendous effort to re-envision CTSI’s recruitment services and enhance StudyFinder.
“I have deep regard for the person John Song was and the legacy he created through his teaching and research,” said Hoffman. “His impact is realized through increased access to health care throughout the community, health and health care advances that his mentees carry out, and compassion he inspired in the people who knew him. It means a lot to me to be the inaugural recipient of the John Song Award. He was one of the kindest people I crossed paths with during my seventeen years in health research at the University of Minnesota. John has been influential in my work and inspires me to create programs that will have a positive impact on people’s lives.”
Megan's work to develop and support others and her broad impact in building skills and capabilities in research staff is well recognized. Her principled and ethical leadership has led to major clinical and translational science contributions both locally and nationally, with deep impact on the staff and research teams at the University.
Megan is a skilled relationship builder who’s collaborative by nature as well as a strategic thinker with an innovative perspective. Those who have the privilege of working with Megan have seen her impressive ability to inspire others and add value to everything she touches. CTSI benefits greatly from Megan’s imagination, skill, leadership, and invaluable contributions to its mission and to the University of Minnesota.