The inaugural winners of the Lustgarten Foundation-AACR Career Development Awards for Pancreatic Cancer
Research in Honor of Ruth Bader Ginsburg and John Robert Lewis were announced at the 2021 AACR annual meeting.
For Dr. Avery Posey
it was a bout with chickenpox when he was in 4th grade that spurred his interest in science. He was quarantined in one room for about a week and still remembers his grandmother lovingly applying calamine lotion to his blisters. “I was miserable, itchy, missed school, missed my friends, and all I kept thinking was there had to be a way to prevent this,” Posey says. A few years later, the chickenpox vaccine was unveiled and “most kids today don’t even know what chickenpox is,” he continues. “I thought for a while I wanted to be a doctor, but I realized in undergraduate school that real important changes in how we look at disease and treat disease is due to research.”
Dr. Dannielle Engle thought she was going to be a violinist, a virtuoso maybe along the lines of Joshua Bell. She started college majoring in music, but switched gears and wound up majoring in biology. When she took a low-level job in a research lab while still an undergrad, it was the fruit fly and its simple genetic structure as well as the creativity shown by the investigators with whom she worked that made her realize science was her calling. “I was a pretty good violinist, not great,” she laughs. “But I got completely hooked on my work in the lab and I knew at that point my future was in research.”