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Portrait of Dr. Rebecca Johnson

May 12, 2010

SIU Med School Names Distinguished Alumna

Dr. Rebecca L. Johnson, director of the pathology residency training program at Berkshire Medical Center (BMC) in Pittsfield, Mass., and clinical professor of pathology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School, is the recipient of the Southern Illinois University School of Medicine’s distinguished alumni award for 2010.  Johnson, class of 1978, also is chairman of pathology and clinical laboratories at BMC.

The award from the School’s Alumni Society Board of Governors recognizes outstanding contributions to medicine and distinguished service to humankind.  It will be presented at SIU’s commencement ceremony on Saturday, May 22, in Springfield.

Comments from Johnson’s nominators included “Dr. Johnson has made extraordinary contributions to clinical pathology, physician education and research in flocytometry and immunopathology.  During her career, she has served in leadership positions in multiple medical and pathology organizations.  Dr. Johnson cares passionately about teaching and training the next generation of pathologists.  Her commitment to physician education is evident from her long tenure as residency program director and national leadership regarding maintenance of certification for physicians.  She represents all that is good in organized medicine and is a wonderful ambassador for SIU.”

Nominators also said Johnson is nationally recognized for her many leadership activities in pathology advocacy and education including serving as chairman of the American Board of Pathology.  Her service has been recognized by the College of American Pathologists with two named awards, the Lansky Award, given for demonstrated leadership and significant contributions to the field of pathology, and the Kuehn Award, given for outstanding contributions in the area of communications resulting in the strengthening of the image of pathology.  Johnson has published numerous articles and book chapters.

Johnson completed fellowships in hematology/hematopathology at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda (1982) and Hartford Hospital in Hartford, Conn. (1982) and residencies in anatomic and clinical pathology at Baystate Medical Center in Springfield, Mass., and Hartford Hospital.  She earned her bachelor’s at Illinois State University (1974).