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July 2008 Issue

Robert Lukin, MD, is chair of UC's radiology department.
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Distinguished Radiology Professor Receives Neuroradiology Society's Highest Honor

By Amanda Harper
Published July 2008

People whoíve met Robert Lukin, MD, know he is an unassuming, laid-back person. But behind that kind demeanor resides a driven, visionary leader who has been instrumental in guiding his chosen field, neuroradiology, for nearly 40 years.

Lukinís career achievements were recently recognized with the American Society of Neuroradiologyís (ASNR) highest honor: the Gold Medal. He accepted the award at the societyís annual meeting in New Orleans on June 5.

The Gold Medal was established in 1995 to honor individuals who have made "exceptional contributions" to the field of neuroradiology. Medal awardees are selected for both professional and personal excellence.

His colleagues say the award is well deserved.

"Bob Lukin has contributed mightily to the field of neuroradiology," says Gary Becker, MD, executive director of the American Board of Radiology (ABR) and vascular and interventional radiology professor at the University of Arizona. "He helped to shape the field as it was formed, and has worked to strengthen it ever since.

"At the time when neuroradiology was emerging as a subspecialty, he guided the ABR and the ASNR through difficult-to-navigate waters," Becker adds. "Bob had a vision of how the new discipline would serve the public, and that vision has indeed been realized over the past 14 years."

As only the third radiology chair at UC, Lukin led the radiology department with what his colleagues called a "calm, strong leadership style" for 15 years. He stepped down as chair in February 2008 to focus on clinical activities.

Lukin is credited with strengthening UCís radiology residency program and expanding clinical programs and services. In his time at UC, he has participated in the training of more than 300 residents and 60 neuroradiology fellows.

"Despite his numerous contributions to the field of neuroradiology, Dr. Lukin takes greatest pride in his clinical practice and education of residents and trainees," says Frank Eggers, MD, a neuroradiologist in Memphis, Tenn., who completed fellowship training under Lukin at UC.
"Even as chairperson, he maintained a significant role clinically, teaching residents and fellows on almost a daily basis."

During his tenure at UCóboth as a division director and department chairóLukin ensured that the radiology department regularly secured the most advanced equipment and implemented innovative new imaging techniques. He worked with Jerome Wiot, MD, his predecessor, to bring the first computer tomography (CT) scanner to the Tristate in 1974.

Lukin served in a leadership role with the ASNR for 14 years as part of the executive committee responsible for managing critical issues related to certification.

"Dr. Lukin has been the individual most responsible for shaping subspecialty certification in neuroradiology through his service as a trustee on the ABR," says Douglas Yock Jr., MD, a fellow ABR neuroradiology trustee.

"He has contributed a huge amount of time as well as diplomatic and organizational skill to this effort. Its success is largely a result of his ability and dedication."

As an active member of the ABR, Lukin was a board examiner for 30 years. In this role, he chaired a subcommittee that developed the first computer-based recertification examination for neuroradiology. He also played a key role in the development of subspecialty certification exams, which allowed neuroradiologists to be certified and examined within their subspecialty.

"Bob worked tirelessly as a trustee of the ABR, doing the work that ordinarily takes two trustees to accomplish. He has maintained his leadership role and stature, not just at the ABR, but in ASNR, and at his home institution, UC," Becker says.

"Bob is a genteel individual and the consummate professional. His Gold Medal from the American Society of Neuroradiology is richly deserved."

True to form, Lukin says he was surprised to receive the Gold Medal.

"Iíve joined the ranks of a pretty staggering group of people," he says. "Iím deeply honored and bit humbled."

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