The official newsletter of the
American Association for Women Radiologists

January 2014 • Volume 34 • Number 1

 Dear Esteemed AAWR members,

It is my honor and pleasure to serve as the 34th president of AAWR, an organization with over 3 decades of success supporting professional women in these fields. AAWR has assisted thousands of women in their career advancement and has the potential to play an important role in fields of radiology and radiation oncology (which includes over 8000 women practitioners in the US alone), and it is my goal to help us reach that potential.

There is a lot for us to do. Women are still underrepresented in the medical profession and even more so in positions of leadership. Despite women making up 50% of medical school applicants, only 34% of practicing physicians and 24% of radiologists are women. The ratio of women to men practicing physicians has not changed in the past eight years. In past years, AAWR has identified barriers and women-specific challenges that contribute to these continuing inequities. As physicians, we understand that diagnosis is the crucial first step to any treatment, and AAWR is a crucial platform for the discussion of these pathologies in the workplace. This year, however, I would like us to focus our energies on moving resolutely past the diagnosis stage into treatment, to identify problems and work on specific actions towards solutions.

In working towards solutions, I want to encourage us all to move forward with an attitude of win-win collaboration. This means approaching problems not in terms of what women suffer, but rather in terms of what organizations suffer when they exclude women—and thus, what they can gain from including and supporting women. Win-win collaborations are in place in our everyday work, from collaborations between radiologists and radiation oncologists to collaborations between physicians and physicists to collaborations between physician and patient. One important collaboration to keep in mind, perhaps especially in an organization for women, is the collaboration between men and women. To this end, AAWR must work to recruit even more men members, not only to increase the diversity and range of available mentors, but also to educate and impassion more men to champion the cause of women. With a win-win attitude, we must convince men that it is in their best interests to use the strengths of women in the workplace.

In the same vein, AAWR must recognize its strengths as an organization full of professional women, and its own strong position to help contribute to other organizations. Instead of asking other organizations such as RSNA, ACR, ASTRO to help us, let’s ask them what they need, and ask ourselves what we can do for them. In approaching organizations that lack female representation in leadership, we can offer our assistance in finding strong candidates from the many talented professionals in AAWR. We can make our partnership with other organizations and events a valuable stamp of approval. As members of AAWR, we can reach out to those individuals in need and ask, how can AAWR help? After all, women and AAWR have much to offer!

Finally, in the spirit of collaboration, I would like to invite all members, leaders, and previous presidents to share your ideas. What, in your view, are the priorities for women professionals in radiology and radiation oncology? What has worked in the past? What do you wish to do, but have not yet done? Everyone, please think of one goal that is the most important for you, and write to me or call me to let me know. Contact Michele, our executive director, or any of our executive committee members. We would like to know what you need, and focus on the issues most important to you.

I look forward to working with you for an exciting new year.

Feng-Ming (Spring) Kong, MD, PhD
President of American Association for Women Radiologists/Radiation Oncologists
Professor and Chair
Department of Radiation Oncology
Medical College of Georgia
Georgia Regents University


Below are a few of the highlights from the AAWR meetings at RSNA.


Looking Back and Moving Forward; Transformation of AAWR

Immediate Past President - Yoshimi Anzai, MD MPH; University of Utah

 I would like to express my sincere appreciation to all of you, AAWR members, for your continuous support for AAWR.  Serving as the AAWR President was one of the most rewarding and fulfilling experience in my academic career.  My presidency started at the RSNA Presidential luncheon during Mrs. Beverly Huckman’s inspirational and compassionate address for which she received a standing ovation from the capacity audience. Read More

Marie Curie Award Winner; Elizabeth L. Travis, PhD, FASTRO
Lecture: Homage to Marie Sklodowska-Curie

President: Feng-Ming (Spring) Kong, MD, PhD, MPH

President Elect: Susan Johnston Ackerman, M.D

Vice President: Margaret Szabunio, MD, FACR

Treasurer: Chelsea C. Pinnix, MD, PhD

Secretary: Dr Jocelyn D Chertoff, MD, MS, FACR

Past President: Yoshimi Anzai, MD, MPH

Member-at-Large, Diagnostic Radiology: Dr. Elizabeth Arleo

Member-at-Large, Radiation Oncology: Maria D Kelly MB, BCh, FACR

Member-at-Large, Member-in-Training: Dr. Wendy Gao & Dr. Kristina Hoque

ACR Councilor: Barbara Pawley, MD

ACR Alternate Councilor: Dr. Rachel Gerson


Learn more about the 2015 Executive Committee

1. AAWR'S Inaugural Book Club

    a. Book Selection: “Lean In” Women, Work, and The Will to Lead by Sheryl Sandberg
    b. Tuesday, February 17, 2015. 7 pm Eastern
    c. Conference call: 1-866-670-5102
       Participant: 971529
        Please RSVP

2. ARRS – Toronto, CA- April 23rd

    a. Luncheon session – 12:00-1:00 – panel format
    b. “Future woven Leaders In Radiology: How to climb the ladder & overcome challenges”
    c. Speakers – Elizabeth Arleo, Kathleen Fink, Ashley Simonak, Jennifer Favinger
        Register Here

3. ACR – Washington, DC – May 21st
     a. 1:30-3:00
    b.“Entrepreneurial Women Leaders in Radiology”
         i.   Stamatia Destounis – “ Skills of Entrepeneurship to build a Successful Private Enterprise”
         ii.  Kristen Destigter-  “ Women Leaders in Entrepreneurship in a large corporate group”
         iii. Carolyn Melzer – “ Women Leaders and Enrepeneurship in Academic Radiology”

4.  SPR – Seattle, WA – April 27th 
    a. Luncheon session - 12:00-1:15 PM
    b. “ Women in Radiology including challenges & climbing the leader to success”
    c. Speakers :
             i.      Jeanne Hill
             ii.      Meryle Ecklund 
             iii.      Melissa Hilmes

(reprinted with permission from the ACR Bulletin, November 2014, Vol. 69, issue 11)

Employment Unlocked

Follow these tips for a successful first job search.

Successful First Job Search in Radiology

The job search is anything but ordinary for radiologists — most of whom went directly from
college to medical school and on to internship, residency, and fellowship. “For a lot of us, this is the first time we’re looking for a job,” says Jonathan Flug, MD, MBA, assistant professor of radiology at the University of Colorado in Aurora, Colo. “And I think that, for a lot of people, it’s hard at first.”

On top of it all, the job market for radiologists hasn’t exactly been booming since the economic crisis in 2008, which may have led to “conservative hiring practices by radiology groups that are unsure what the future holds in terms of reimbursement.”1 For trainees, there is no crystal ball predicting which subspecialties will be popular or which geographic regions will have more job openings. In fact, the best advice comes — quite simply — from those who recently underwent their own search. Here are some tips from radiologists who succeeded in securing a full-time imaging gig.

1. Start Early

Timing is everything. And, luckily, radiologists are used to starting early. “You apply for medical school a year in advance,” Flug says. “You apply for residency two years in advance because we do a year of internship that’s separate. And you basically apply for fellowship two years in advance.” However, with the job search, Flug says, you only need to start applying approximately six months in advance.

Nonetheless, you will need to start thinking about other aspects of your job hunt much earlier. These decisions include subspecialization, geographic region, and what kind of practice — academic, private, clinic, etc. — you’d like to join. “Start paying more attention to the ACR Workforce Survey and what’s out there,” says Flug. For more information about this year’s survey  — an annual electronic survey to radiology practice leaders about workplace-related trends — turn to the end of the article. “As far as starting to gather information, the sooner you start, the better,” says Flug. “And if you know that you want to be in a specific location, you have to really start exploring early and be aggressive about seeking opportunities and networking, which is something we do not think about often in medicine.”

2. Network
In a stack of fifty CVs, it’s challenging to get noticed. That’s why networking is so important. For Flug, who discovered his job through a connection, national meetings like AMCLC and RSNA have been invaluable: “I went over to tell someone ‘Hi’ at a national meeting. They asked how my job search was going and introduced me to someone from their department. Next thing I knew I had an interview. Had we not met in person, I don’t think I would have gotten that interview and opportunity.”

Ryan Brady, MD, a breast-imaging fellow at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis, notes that ACR’s annual meeting is a “valuable source of information and networking opportunities and one of the best conferences that residents can get involved in.” He adds, “Residents shouldn’t undervalue the importance of networking in the job-seeking process. The people you meet can play an important role in helping determine the type of practice you want to join.” Brady recently accepted a position with Park Nicollet Health Services in St. Louis Park, Minn., beginning in July 2015. “Though residents may not need to formally apply for a job until their last year of training,” says Brady, “they shouldn’t hesitate to discuss employment opportunities with radiology practice leaders on a more informal basis earlier in their residencies.”

Flug also sees this process as one guided by the “pay it forward” mentality. “If somebody helps you, then two years from now, when a trainee calls you up, turn around and do the same thing for them,” he says. “If we keep helping each other out, we’ll get through the tough job market. And sooner or later, the market will hopefully turn around. We need to really look out for each other in radiology.”

3. Be Open-Minded but Picky
When it comes to making decisions about the job search, the ACR Workforce Survey data shows it’s important to be open-minded. “People need to be open regarding geographic location and the type of work situation they seek for the first time,” says Edward I. Bluth, MD, FACR, chair of the ACR Commission on Human Resources, which conducts the annual survey.

However, being open-minded doesn’t necessarily mean you can’t be picky too. Remember that you want to find a position and a practice that’s a good fit for you personally. Brady suggests finding out as much as you can about a practice or department you’re considering joining — especially by talking to physicians who work there. “The more you can find out about the culture of a practice, the more informed decision you can make,” Brady explains.

Flug adds that it’s important to prioritize what’s meaningful to you — whether that’s being in a certain city or working in academic practice. “When I applied for a musculoskeletal imaging job, it was one of the hot fields,” Flug says. “But I chose it because it’s what I wanted to do.” Brady agrees, saying, “I think it’s important for residents to go into a field that they find interesting and that they think is the best long-term match for them, not to necessarily focus on a hot subspecialty in the short term just to gain a job.”

4. Provide Value
In the era of Imaging 3.0™, the ACR Workforce Survey can help gauge changes in expectations for practicing radiologists. According to Bluth, radiologists need to be open to taking on other duties and providing value outside of image interpretation. “Most job opportunities are for individuals who are subspecialists in a field but also are willing to do other radiologic activities, including interpreting other subspecialty areas,” says Bluth.

Employers are looking for well-rounded applicants who can add value, which can be difficult to prove through your CV. Brady notes, “Anything you can do to distinguish yourself during training, such as serving on committees, participating in organizations such as the ACR, or serving as a chief resident will demonstrate leadership and motivation. I think those would be attractive qualities in applicants.”

 5. Utilize Your Resources
“The ACR Career Center was the best resource for looking for jobs,” says Flug, who signed up for the daily job e-mail alerts. He notes that you can sign up based on subspecialty or location and the service is free. Flug also advises trainees to sign up as soon as they have a general sense of what they’re looking for. “You’ll get a feel for what’s out there,” he says. The ACR Career Center also has several other resources, such as information on CVs, interviews, and negotiation. Check it out at

Note: click on images below to enlarge.



Lynne Steinbach, MD, ACR

Dr. Lynne Steinbach just assumed the role of President of the International Skeletal Society (ISS) for the next two years. The ISS is an interdisciplinary society dedicated to the learning, understanding and teaching of musculoskeletal disorders. Dr. Steinbach is the first woman to be president of this prestigious society. She is a Professor of Clinical Radiology and Orthopaedic Surgery, and is one of the country’s top radiologists in sports imaging. Dr. Steinbach is a Past President of the American Association for Women Radiologists and the San Francisco Radiological Society. She has assumed leadership positions in the International Society for Magnetic Resonance Imaging in Medicine. Dr. Steinbach was the former Chief of Musculoskeletal Imaging at UCSF and now director of Musculoskeletal Imaging Fellowship at UCSF.   - See more at:



Want to praise a fellow AAWR member? Have an announcement to share? Send your " Kudos" to, with the subject line " Kudos"   


We’re pleased to announce the launch of a new online tool to help you access job search and career management information, the AAWR Career Center!


The goal of this website is to provide you with the latest online resources and tools regarding new jobs and resumes. Whether you are an employer seeking to hire someone knowledgeable in the field or a  resident looking to take the next step in your career, the AAWR Career Center can help!


Members even get a 30% discount when posting jobs to the site!

Search job postings with ease at the AAWR Career Center

Congratulations to the 2014 recipients of the Member-in-Training Awards give at 2014 RSNA!

2014 Member-in-Training Award for Outstanding RSNA Presentation in Diagnostic Radiology

Noushin Yahyavi Firouz Abadi, MD
Resting State fMRI as a Predictor of Vision Loss in Patients with Neurofibromatosis Type 1 (NF1)-associated Optic Pathway Gliomas

Dr. Yahyavi was born and raised in a family of physicians in Tehran, Iran. She entered the medical school after ranking 1st in the Iranian national universities medical examination among almost half a million participants. After obtaining her M.D. degree from Tehran University of Medical Sciences, she moved to the United States as a post-doctoral fellow. Subsequently, she did her internship in Internal Medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Foundation and Diagnostic Radiology Residency at the Mallinckrodt Institute of Radiology, Washington University in St Louis. She is currently a diagnostic Neuroradiology fellow at the Russell H. Morgan Department of Diagnostic Radiology at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. She has been author or co-author of more than 20 peer-reviewed journal articles and has presented in many international and national conferences. Her honors and awards include RSNA trainee research prize, RSNA Certificate of Merit award, and multiple  travel awards from European, American, and international societies.

Her research interests/expertise includes functional imaging (resting state and task based fMRI), head and neck imaging, spine imaging and intervention, and healthcare policies and management.


2014 Member-in-Training Award for Outstanding RSNA Presentation in Radiology Oncology

Jennifer Shah, MD
The Role of PET/CT in the Nodal Management of Squamous Cell Carcinoma of the Oral Cavity

A native of Massachusetts, Dr. Shah completed her undergraduate studies in nuclear engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. During this time, she was involved in multiple research projects pertaining to tumor biology, which led to her interest in medicine and oncology. She went on to earn her medical degree at the University of Michigan Medical School, where she was elected to the Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Society and received other awards for academic distinction. She excelled during her internship as well, receiving the Intern of the Year Award at the St. Joseph Mercy Hospital in Ann Arbor, Michigan.  She is currently a resident physician in the Department of Radiation Oncology at Stanford. She enjoys caring for cancer patients immensely. During her residency training, she has developed particular interest in clinical research pertaining to head and neck cancer, lung cancer, glioblastoma multiforme, and esophageal cancer. Her research focuses on the role of radiation therapy and neck dissection in oral cavity cancer. She is also initiating a prospective clinical trial investigating toxicity management for radiation dermatitis. In addition to her research endeavors, Dr. Shah has a strong interest in medical education and has played an active role in mentoring medical students and contributing to the educational resources in her residency program. Upon completion of her residency training, Dr. Shah looks forward to pursuing an academic career in radiation oncology.

Call for Applications

The AAWR is pleased to welcome its newest members that joined the Association between September 1st and December 31st, 2014.

Dr Katie Jones MD
Dr Alison Palumbo, MD
Dr Kellie Schenk, MD
Dr Allyson Chesebro, MD
Dr Aurela Clark, MD
Dr Shilpa Reddy, MD
Dr Preeti Sakerkar, MD PhD
Dr Morgan Telesmanich, MD
Ms Jennifer Cheng, DO
Ms Alison Esteva Sanders            
Dr Shenise Gilyard        
Dr Lori    Schoenbrun, MD
Ms Cathy Zhang
Dr Katherine Maturen, MD
Dr Camille McGann, MD
Dr Rilinda Cela, MD
Dr Teresa Liang, MD
Dr.Christina Ma, MD
Dr. Rachel Nelson, MD
Dr. David Zaenger, MD
Dr. Mayada Dabajeh, MD
Ms. Enyioma Okechukwu            
Rutuparna Sarangi            

The AAWR would like to thank the following people for their contribution to the Research and Education Foundation between December 1, 2014 and January 31st, 2015.

Dr. William Yuh MD, ARRT 
Dr. Feng Ming Kong MD, PhD, Medical College of Georgia
Dr. Cristina Fuss MD, Oregon Health & Sciences University
Dr. Maria Ines Boechat MD, FACR University of California Los Angeles


Thank you for your support of AAWR – we greatly appreciate it.  Membership in the AAWR provides the society with the means to continue the many projects supporting women in radiology and radiation oncology.  In addition to the financial support, your voice added to those of your colleagues helps the AAWR to continue to address the challenges facing women in radiology and radiation oncology in today’s practices.   

We are pleased to announce that AAWR members are able to renew their 2015 membership online!   In addition, the AAWR has migrated to a new membership database and has launched a new web site which has added increased value to our members. 

Renewing your membership is easier than ever with our new online renewal system. Simply follow these steps:

Please go to and click on the “Login” button located in the upper right hand corner. 

1.     Log in using your primary email address and password.   If you do not know your password, click on “forgot password”, and you will receive an email with instructions to reset it.

2. Click on "Renew Your Dues" located on the left hand side of the page under Member Links

3. Click on the "Renew Membership" located on the top tool bar or on the tool bar located on the left hand side of the page

4. Click on “Pay Open Orders” and follow the prompts to submit your payment

5. A confirmation will be emailed to you immediately after you have completed your transaction

After you have completed your renewal, take a moment and ensure your address, profile, and demographic information are up-to-date by clicking on "My Information"(located on the navigation bar on the left hand side of the page).

Don’t lose your valuable AAWR membership -- Renew online today!

If you have any questions, please contact one of our customer service staff directly in our membership department at 703-476-7650 or email them at

Thank you for your support of AAWR and the profession!  I look forward to you reinstating your membership.


Feng-Ming (Spring) Kong, MD, PhD
President, American Association for Women Radiologists (AAWR)

Chief Editor
Jocelyn D. Chertoff, MD, MS

Administrative Editor
Michele Wittling
Stephanie Huppert