Thomas Annesley, PhD, receives award from the IFCC

By Lynn McCain | June 11 2020

Congratulations to Thomas Annesley, PhD, (active professor emeritus of pathology) on winning the 2020 International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine (IFCC) Award for Distinguished Contributions in Education.  This award is given to one educator every three years from among more than 45,000 members of the IFCC organizations.  This is truly an outstanding honor for Annesley and the Department of Pathology! Several of Annesley’s colleagues provided their recollections of his service leading to this award.

“After his post-doctoral training at the Mayo Clinic, recalls Dr. David Keren, professor of pathology, former director of the division of clinical pathology, and long-time colleague, “Tom Annesley brought his talents to Michigan effectively deploying and expanding mass spectrometry in our toxicology laboratory. Tom is an extraordinary educator. For almost 40 years, including the present academic one, he taught principles of mass spectrometry and scientific writing to our residents and fellows. Recognizing his talents, Tom has served in the prestigious post as one of the lead editors of Clinical Chemistry. His publication Guides to Scientific Writing and Peer Review are standards in the field. Tom Annesley is highly deserving of the International Federation of Clinical Chemistry and Laboratory Medicine 2020 Award for Distinguished Contributions in Education.”

Dr. Duane Newton, associate director of the division of clinical pathology and director of the clinical microbiology laboratory, expressed his appreciation for Annesley, “Tom’s passion for and excellence in teaching has always been clearly evident. I learned so much from him, not just about the content he presented, but also his approach to sharing his knowledge.  He has been a mentor and friend to me…I am very proud of him for receiving this very deserved honor…and I miss having him around here.”

“Tom is highly deserving of this prestigious award,” stated Dr. Don Giacherio, associate professor of clinical chemistry and the director of chemical pathology. “During his years at U of M, he was instrumental in bringing liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry methods into the toxicology laboratory, particularly in the area of immunosuppressant drug monitoring. He has played a significant role in both the local Michigan Section and national AACC organization, helping to educate clinical chemists. Tom has always been a great educator, and with his mid-career shift to teaching scientific writing, he was able to use his passion for teaching to help positively shape the  careers of an incredible number of young scientists.”

Since 2014 Dr. Annesley has provided multiple in-person and virtual scientific writing seminars for the Michigan Institute for Clinical Health Research (MICHR) for more than 600 graduate and post-doctoral students. The students greatly value his knowledge and teaching style, providing feedback such as:

“Dr. Annesley is a terrific speaker and I will refer to his slides for years to come.  It is great advice.”

“Tom is an excellent teacher.  He is outstanding at explaining things clearly and giving a variety of examples.  I feel confident that I know what I need to do to write and submit journal articles.”

“He is continually updating and improving his teaching materials, providing instruction that is perfectly tailored for each group he is working with,” stated Brenda Eakin from MICHR. “Knowing how to communicate well through scientific writing is a critical skill for emerging researchers to learn. Through his engaging style, humor, and deep knowledge of scientific writing, Dr. Annesley easily connects with a wide variety of audiences, helping them to understand and learn this much-needed ability.”

Laura Denton, Assistant Director of Faculty Development at the U-M Medical School added, “Dr. Annesley has been a wonderful partner to the Medical School Office of Faculty Development.  He facilitated 25 workshops for us over the years and was able to reach more than 300 faculty with his wisdom in developing successful scientific papers.  His workshops are consistently well-received with comments such as “The step by step approach for each section was greatly appreciated. This course is excellent for the new and seasoned writer” and “I have written many research articles and am always amazed at how there is always something more to learn. Tom really organized the most salient points for each section very clearly. This has really been inspiring for a manuscript I am currently struggling with.”

“Tom Annesley is an educator to the core, said Dr. Charles Parkos, chair of pathology, “ I have been impressed by his commitment to teaching, not only through formal class instruction but in the many informal conversations he has had with trainees and peers over the years.  I applaud the IFCC for recognizing him with this prestigious award and offer heartfelt congratulations to Tom.”

Read the press release here regarding the 2020 IFCC Award for Distinguished Contributions in Education.