The Roland L. Weinsier Award for Excellence in Medical/Dental Nutrition Education, Supported by the Dannon Institute, is presented in recognition of an outstanding career in medical and/or dental nutrition education. The results of the nominee’s efforts should be widely recognized and have had a national or international impact. Nomination will depend on acknowledged excellence in nutrition teaching or nutrition education research that extends beyond the local institution and that includes innovations in medical/dental nutrition education.
The 2016 recipient of the Roland L. Weinsier Award for Excellence in Medical/Dental Nutrition Education is Douglas L. Seidner, MD, Director of the Vanderbilt Center for Human Nutrition, for his tireless leadership in the American Society for Nutrition on matters related to nutrition education in professional schools and on his nutrition education leadership in all the institutions where he has invested his career. He chaired CPNE from 2002 to 2010, when the committees were reorganized, and he has led the ensuing Nutrition Education Committee ever since. This longevity of service as a committee chair (2002 to the present) is unprecedented in the recent history of ASN/ASCN.
Doug Seidner has been an active educator in medical nutrition for nearly thirty years. Following his residency at Harvard Medical School, he first completed a fellowship in Nutrition and Metabolism at Harvard’s New England Deaconess Hospital, under Drs. Bistrian and Blackburn. He then pursued a fellowship in gastroenterology at George Washington University School of Medicine, where he joined the nutrition support team, as he subsequently did at Geisinger Medical Center, then the Cleveland Clinic, and more recently at the Vanderbilt University Center for Human Nutrition, which he has directed since 2008. Dr. Seidner was a key member of the curriculum development team for GI and Nutrition at the Cleveland Clinic and Case Western Reserve University. At Vanderbilt he directed nutrition problem-based learning for second year medical students and a medical school nutrition course, as well as being involved in several other courses. At the institutions where he has served, Dr. Seidner has served on multiple medical nutrition and dietetics committees, and has participated in many task forces to improve the quality of nutrition care offered in those medical centers. Dr. Seidner has also been a mentor and advocate for medical nutrition training of graduate and postgraduate medical trainees. He has supervised numerous medical students, residents, and fellows, and has supervised other health professionals in nutritional support, including dietitians and pharmacists. Among these are approximately 15 clinical nutrition fellows, 55 gastroenterology fellows (including one on a K30 CRCA from the Division of GI at Case Western Reserve University), 130 general surgery and anesthesiology residents on rotations, and ~55 dietitian, nurse and pharmacist trainees in nutrition support. To enhance his teaching effectiveness, Dr. Seidner invested in 6 education skill-building workshops. Dr. Seidner has been very active nationally in medical nutrition education. He was invited to present educational lectures at all ASN/EB annual conferences between 2010 and 2014.
Between 1991 and 2013, Doug Seidner organized and directed at least 8 nutrition symposia, including 4 for Clinical Congresses of the American Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (2006, 2007, 2009, and 2011), and he has served as an expert panel participant in several NIH sponsored workshops, most recently NHLBI’s “Future Directions for Implementing Nutrition across the Continuum of Medical Education, Training, and Research” in 2012. As a result, he has multiple conference proceeding publications. He is the editor of “The Science and Practice of Nutrition Support: A Case-Based Core Curriculum” and “Intestinal Failure and Rehabilitation: A Clinical Guide.” He has been especially active in medical nutrition education for the past decade at the American Society for Nutrition and he redesigned successfully the education subcommittees’ roles within the society. He has chaired or co-chaired ASN’s Nutrition Education Committee (2010-present) and its predecessor, the Committee on Professional Nutrition Education. He was the founding president of the Central Pennsylvania Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition (ASPEN) in 1991 and president of the Ohio Society of ASPEN in 1993-1994. He has been a member of several other nutrition-related committees in medical societies.
Among Doug Seidner’s more than 70 articles, 28 book chapters, and nearly 100 abstracts, nutrition education of health professionals has a consistent representation. Among them are publications providing guidelines for nutrition care of sick patients and calls for action such as the recent NHLBI efforts around “The need to improve nutrition education of medical and health care professionals and the research recommended to evaluate implementation and effectiveness.” Virtually all of his book chapters are devoted to nutrition education of health professionals. Doug Seidner has also a very long track record of supporting the development and use of innovative instructional approaches in nutrition education, devoting significant time serving for many years on the Advisory Board of the NIH-funded Nutrition in Medicine project for online nutrition education based at the University of North Carolina. He was instrumental in its widespread adoption by domestic and international medical schools. His enthusiastic and outstanding leadership in efforts for better nutrition education is now extending to a global reach through international collaborations of the ASN Nutrition Education Committee, joining in the establishment of an annual international medical nutrition education conference, and a joint venture on the development of e-learning aimed at low-income countries in Africa and elsewhere.
Doug Seidner has been a relentless mentor to NEPS for many years. As Vice Chair of NEPS (2010-2012) and chair of NEPS (2012-2015). He always finds time to organize yet another phone call to brainstorm and to advise on the next steps for a specific task or project, often in late evenings. He sees everyone in the subcommittee as an essential member of the team to move the projects ahead. He is very attentive to time limitations and goes the extra mile to help where needed.
This award is administered by the American Society for Nutrition. The Dannon Institute provides a monetary award and inscribed plaque. The award is presented at the annual Experimental Biology meeting.