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2016 Alumni Award Winners

These individuals were honored at the 2016 College of Medicine Alumni Awards Celebration on Monday, August 1, 2016. 


​Alumni Achievement Award

Michael Boninger, MD '89 

Michael Boninger, MD, is renowned for his extensive research on spinal cord injury, assistive technology and overuse injuries. His groundbreaking research has changed the way physicians and researchers across the globe view many aspects of human movement, from how a tendon responds to repetitive use to how people can control a prosthesis using a brain-computer interface. Boninger graduated from The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 1989, and now is vice chair for research of the Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at the University of Pittsburgh. He is senior medical director for Post-acute Care for the Health Services Division of UPMC (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center) and a physician-researcher for the Department of Veterans Affairs. Dr. Boninger is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine (formerly Institute of Medicine) and has served as president of the Association of Academic Physiatrists. He has received the American Congress of Rehabilitation Medicine John Stanley Coulter Award, Distinguished Mentor Award from the University of Pittsburgh 
Institute for Clinical Research Education, and the Estin Comarr Award for 
Distinguished Clinical Service from the Academy of Spinal Cord Injury Professionals.



Cindy Grines, MD '80 Doherty, Dennis 005.jpg

Cindy Grines, MD, FACC, FSCAI, has earned worldwide recognition and respect as a leading interventional cardiologist and researcher. She is widely acclaimed for her work with acute myocardial infarction, having initiated and designed the Primary Angioplasty in Myocardial Infarction (PAMI) studies, which revolutionized the treatment and management of heart attack patients. She graduated from The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 1980 and currently is vice president for academic and clinical affairs at Detroit Medical Center Heart Hospital and professor of medicine at Wayne State University. She has authored more than 500 publications, numerous book chapters and hundreds of medical journal articles regarding cardiac catheterization, angioplasty, acute myocardial infarction, chemical intervention to break down arterial blockage, and gene therapy. She also is editor-in-chief of the Journal of Interventional Cardiology, serves on the editorial boards of many leading national and international medical journals and has co-edited 
several medical handbooks. Dr. Grines is a member of the American Heart 
Association, American College of Cardiology and the Society for Cardiovascular 
Angiography and Interventions.​

Early Career Achievement Award

Kathleen Unroe, MD '05, MHARoychowdhurySameek.jpg

Kathleen Unroe, MD, MHA, knew she “wanted to be a doctor for old people” when she was in grade school, and she has remained focused on geriatric medicine and improving care in nursing homes throughout her training and into her career in academic medicine. She graduated from The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 2005, and after geriatrics fellowships at Duke University and at the Durham VA Medical Center, she is now assistant professor of Medicine at Indiana University, where she also is a center scientist in the IU Center for Aging Research. In less than five years on faculty, Dr. Unroe has been PI or co-PI on internal and external grants totaling more than $32 million. She has multiple publications in her field. She has also served as a grant reviewer for the National Palliative Care Research Center, and is chair of the Research Committee of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and vice chair of the American Geriatrics Society’s Public Policy Committee. She was a 2009-2010 Health and Aging Policy Fellow with a 
placement at Health and Human Services. 

Alumni Service Award

Phyllis Stephenson, MD '64 ​Tom_Williams (2).jpg

Phyllis Stephenson, MD, graduated from The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 1964, completed her training at Bellevue Hospital Center and Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center in New York City, and had a clinical oncology practice in Sarasota, Fla., from 1969 until she retired in 2005. She had a long history of service to her profession in Florida, including founding of the Florida Society of Clinical Oncology and presiding over the Florida division of the American Cancer Society. Throughout her career, Dr. Stephenson has maintained a longstanding commitment to the College of Medicine, as exemplified by her service on the Medical Alumni Society Board of Governors from 2008-14. During that time, she helped advise new projects to enhance the student experience and connect alumni with the college, students and each other. Dr. Stephenson served as her reunion class co-chair for multiple reunions and most recently helped her class of 1964 celebrate its 50th class reunion by encouraging class participants on and engagement with the college. She is a passionate supporter of the college and encourages alumni engagement and philanthropic support by sponsoring events, connecting with 
classmates, and leading by example.​ 


Faculty Teaching Award​​

Barry Friedman, MD ‘72 ​Curren (2).jpg

Barry Friedman, MD, was known as a “Doctor’s Doctor,” because of his dedicated service to his patients, the high respect of his medical associates (who also were his patients) and his insightful diagnostic skills. He graduated from The Ohio State University College of Medicine in 1972 and served his internship and residency at The Ohio State University Hospitals (now Wexner Medical Center) before he became an instructor in the Ohio State’s Department of Medicine in 1975 and assistant professor there in 1977. Dr. Friedman was considered a master clinician, and he earned numerous awards both for teaching and for clinical excellence during his career, including the Earl Metz Distinguished Physician Award and the Woody Hayes Leadership Award in the Department of Emergency Medicine. After retiring from patient care, he enjoyed teaching in the Internal Medicine Residency Clinic, where he inspired the next generation of young doctors until his death June 4, 2016. Patients, colleagues, students and friends admired not only his skills, but also his compassion and patience.​ 



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