Philip Pizzo, MD, dean of the School of Medicine, was recently awarded the 2012 John Howland Medal, the highest honor bestowed by the American Pediatric Society and the most prestigious award in pediatric academic medicine.
At a dinner held on April 29 at the society's annual meeting, David Stevenson, MD, vice dean of the School, shared a history of Pizzo's distinguished career and broad and deep contribution to pediatrics. The medal honors Pizzo for a lifetime of achievement, spanning his four decades in research and care for children with cancer, AIDS and other infectious diseases, as well as his leadership and advocacy in pediatrics and academic medicine.
The son of Italian immigrants, Pizzo, 67, grew up in the Bronx and was the first member of his family to go to college. He graduated cum laude from Fordham University and received his MD degree with honors and distinction in research from the University of Rochester. Afterwards, he spent 23 years at the National Cancer Institute as head of the infectious disease section, chief of the pediatric department and acting scientific director of the Division of Clinical Sciences. He later served as physician-in-chief of Boston Children's Hospital and chair of the Department of Pediatrics at Harvard Medical School before coming to Stanford as dean in April 2001.
At Stanford, he has led multiple initiatives that have transformed clinical, research and educational programs, as well as the School's physical landscape. He was instrumental in building the Li Ka Shing Center for Learning and Knowledge, the school's distinctive new home.
A video of Pizzo accepting the medal was recently made available and can be viewed until June 14.