Support the Next Generation of Young Investigators

Sally E. Wenzel, MD

The highest honor given by the ATS Foundation in recognition of philanthropy—the Breathing for Life Award—will be presented to Sally E. Wenzel, MD, internationally recognized expert in severe asthma. Dr. Wenzel will be honored at the Eighth Annual ATS Foundation Research Program Benefit, taking place at the San Francisco Marriott Marquis on Saturday, May 14, 2016. ATS 2016 attendees are invited to this special evening reception, centered on supporting research for the next generation of young investigators.

Dr. Wenzel gives back to the pulmonary community through her expertise, commitment to patient care, passion and advocacy for women in science, mentoring of young scientists, and her long-standing generosity toward the ATS Foundation Research Program.

She is a professor of medicine and director of the University of Pittsburgh Asthma Institute at UPMC. Her studies of asthma phenotypes have led the field in understanding the complexities of severe asthma, and her laboratory is one of few that can match cellular and molecular responses to asthma therapies. Those most likely to benefit initially are the 10 to 20 percent of asthma patients whose symptoms are poorly controlled by standard therapies.

Among her many honors, Dr. Wenzel is one of seven investigators in the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute’s Severe Asthma Research Program network. She is the recipient of an ATS Recognition Award for Scientific Accomplishment and the ATS Elizabeth A. Rich Award for her leadership and mentoring of women in science.

Since 2004, the ATS Foundation has awarded more than $11 million in grants to 183 junior investigators, launching careers for a new generation of researchers. Past research program grant recipients have gone on to secure $143 million in additional research funding from the National Institutes of Health and other funding resources, publish in many prestigious national and international journals, and become mentors to the next generation of researchers.


James F. Donohue, MD

ATS Foundation Chair James F. Donohue, MD, whose sixth and final year as a trustee comes to a close, recalls the challenges faced in early stages of the foundation. Dr. Donohue collaborated with ATS staff, executive committee members, assemblies, committees, and fellow trustees to build the ATS Foundation, from the ground up. “In the beginning,” he explains, “we all had to get together, roll up our sleeves and help the future generation, like the generations before us have done.” As outgoing chair, Dr. Donohue is most proud of member engagement with the foundation and increasing levels of participation. “The pulmonary, critical care, and sleep community is generous,” he says, “and it is extremely gratifying.”

In 2016, the ATS Foundation will fund more than 20 awards, including unrestricted research awards in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine; research partner awards; and awards for outstanding alumni from the Methods in Epidemiologic, Clinical and Operations Research (MECOR) program. Applications for the 2016 Research Program are being accepted now, with letters of intent due by June 5, 2016.

The Benefit promises to be among one the most important—and fun—social events at ATS 2016. Dr. Donohue calls it a “great social occasion” to meet people from around the world. “There are no speeches,” he says, “Instead it is a large informal gathering. Conference goers can enjoy themselves at the benefit, while doing a bit of good.”

If you plan to attend ATS 2016, please register for the benefit. Every dollar contributed will go directly to support research awards for early career scientists. If you are unable to attend the benefit but wish to place an ad or make a donation to the Research Program in honor of Dr. Wenzel, please contribute online.

We look forward to seeing you and to achieving our shared vision of supporting a new generation of researchers in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine. For more information on corporate packages, please contact Michelle Turenne at or 212-315-6448. For more information on academic medical institution, nonprofit organization, or individual ticket packages, contact Lydia Neumann at or 212-315-8622 or Ally Felix at or 212-315-6464.

The Eighth Annual ATS Foundation Research Program Benefit is generously supported by:

Sapphire Level—$100,000

Platinum Level—$60,000

Crystal Level—$50,000
Mylan, Inc.

Gold Level-$25,000
AstraZeneca LP
Boehringer Ingelheim Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation
Sanofi Genzyme and Regeneron

Silver Level-$10,000

Gilead Sciences, Inc.
Meda Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Teva Respiratory

Bronze Level-$5,000
Boston Scientific Corporation, Inc.
Insmed Incorporated
Sunovion Pharmaceuticals, Inc.
Theravance Biopharma

The ATS Foundation thanks UPMC & University of Pittsburgh, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy and Critical Care Medicine and the many individuals and medical institutions that have stepped forward to support the Research Program and young investigators in pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine.

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