Khakoo Honored with Inaugural Women in Science and Health Excellence Award

MORGANTOWN, W.Va. – Rashida Khakoo, M.D., professor and chief of infectious diseases at West Virginia University’s School of Medicine, was honored with the WVU Women in Science and Health Excellence Award.  This award recognizes the career achievements of women in the Health Sciences Center who demonstrate excellence in mentorship, leadership, research or education.

Other nominees were: Ann Chester, Ph.D., assistant vice president for health sciences for social justice; June Larrabee, Ph.D., associate professor in the School of Nursing; Mary Beth Mandich, Ph.D., associate dean of the professional program and chair of physical therapy; and Rebecca Schmidt, D.O., associate professor in the department of nephrology.

“All five of these women demonstrated excellence in their respective areas, and selection of one woman on whom to bestow this award was a difficult task for our awards committee,” said Linda Vona-Davis, Ph.D., associate professor of Surgery and chair of the Women in Science and Health Committee.  “Dr. Khakoo was ultimately chosen as our inaugural award winner.”

Khakoo joined the section of infectious diseases at WVU in 1976 and serves as associate chairman for the WVU Department of Medicine and the assistant vice president for faculty development at the Robert C. Byrd Health Sciences Center.  Her specialties include hepatitis, influenza, tropical diseases, HIV and AIDS. Khakoo developed a local program for educating West Virginia residents about infectious diseases, HIV and AIDS.  In addition, her research has been published in more than 35 papers, 115 abstracts, 12 book chapters and 28 grants.           

In 2005, Khakoo was elected a master of the American College of Physicians (ACP)—the highest honor offered by the college—and also received the ACP Laureate Award.  She was also one of 25 women nationally to be chosen for the inaugural ELAM award.

In a nomination of support letter, a colleague wrote that not only is Dr. Khakoo a masterful teacher, but she also inspires her students and residents with curiosity and fosters their interest in medicine.  Her presence at this institution touches the lives of many who come in contact with her.

The WISH committee served as the impetus behind the creation and recognition of WVU as a national center of excellence in women’s health. WISH has hosted networking sessions for women, and was instrumental in bringing the Women in Medicine exhibit to the HSC. For more information about the WISH committee, contact Linda Vona-Davis, Ph.D. at 293-1280. 

- WVU -

For more information:
Steve Bovino, HSC News Service, (304) 293-7087

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