Dr. Kathryn Cullen and Award Plaque

Three U of M faculty honored with CTSI Mentor of the Year awards

CTSI honored three University of Minnesota faculty members with awards for their excellence in research mentorship at its annual Poster Session held Sept. 12:

Individuals were nominated by their mentees, and evaluated based on the research guidance they provided as well as their interpersonal and motivational skills, promotion of career development, mentor training record, and personal research accomplishments.

Mentor of the Year: Dr. Kathryn Cullen

Dr. Kathryn Cullen and Award Plaque

Kathryn Cullen, MD, is an Associate Professor and Division Chief of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, and Director of the Child and Adolescent Mood Disorders Clinic in the University of Minnesota’s Department of Psychiatry.

Dr. Cullen has mentored 16 trainees, including five from CTSI supported programs, ranging from undergraduate to doctoral students in various areas of adolescent psychiatry.

Dr. Cullen’s work focuses on treating adolescents with mental health problems such as depression and non-suicidal self-injury and her research aims to advance understanding of the neurobiology of these clinical problems while providing knowledge about the effects of new treatments

Excerpts from nomination letters

Letters nominating Dr. Cullen describe her inspiring effect on mentees and peers through expertise, professionalism, support, and empathy. One nomination noted that volunteers, staff, and mentees seek out ways to continue working with Dr. Cullen throughout their careers. Following are excerpts from Dr. Cullen’s nominations from mentees and a colleague:

Biostatistical Mentor of the Year: Dr. Cavan Reilly

Dr. Cavan Reilly and Award Plaque

Cavan Reilly, PhD, is a Professor with the Division of Biostatistics in the University of Minnesota’s School of Public Health. Additionally, he serves as Associate Director of the Coordinating Centers for Biometric Research, and teaches two courses in the Biostatistics program.

Dr. Reilly’s work focuses on design, implementation, and analysis of clinical research on infectious diseases as well as HIV/AIDs and Ebola virus disease (EVD), and he has additional expertise in chronic diseases, genetics, Bayesian analysis, high throughput assays, clinical trials, and data management systems.

Excerpts from nomination letters

Dr. Reilly’s nominations underline his enthusiasm for his mentees’ research, as well as his invested attention to the details of securing funding for their work.

Outstanding Junior Mentor: Dr. Elizabeth Rogers

Dr. Elizabeth Rogers and Award Plaque

Accepting the award on Dr. Elizabeth Roger's behalf is her mentee, Hani Abi.

Elizabeth Rogers, MD, MAS, is an Assistant Professor with a joint appointment in Medicine and Pediatrics in the Division of General Internal Medicine, Department of Medicine at the University of Minnesota’s Medical School. Additionally, she has an appointment in the Applied Clinical Research Program.

Dr. Rogers is a primary care physician working in an urban safety net clinic that provides care to underserved adults and children who have multiple chronic conditions and preventive health needs. Her deep commitment to making health care available for all Minnesotans is evident in the grassroots physician organization she helped start to address socioeconomic and ethnicity-based disparities.

Excerpts from nomination letters

Mentees and Dr. Rogers’s own mentor and colleague highlighted her outstanding dedication to quality mentorship, particularly for someone in an early stage of their career.

About the awards

CTSI has bestowed awards to outstanding mentors since 2012, when it first created the Mentor of the Year award. The program has expanded since then to recognize outstanding junior mentors (since 2014) and biostatistical mentors (since 2015).

CTSI’s mentorship approach

Scholars across CTSI’s seven research career development programs, which support students, trainees and junior faculty, are paired with a research mentor, who provides budding researchers with dedicated guidance and support as they begin their research careers.

Faculty interested in becoming research mentors are encouraged to complete a brief interest form. CTSI offers a free online mentor training module used nationally to train and prepare research mentors to effectively help advance the career of their mentees.