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CDC 24/7 – Saving Lives. Protecting People. Saving Money Through Prevention. Learn More About How CDC Works For You…

CDC Scientist Wins Distinguished Physician Award

Pickering: 2007 Distinguished Physician Award Recipient

Published: May 16, 2007

Photo: Dr. Larry Pickering

The highest recognition one can receive is to be awarded for a lifetime of achievement in a distinguished career.

On May 7, Larry K. Pickering, MD, senior advisor to the director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, was awarded the 2007 Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society's Distinguished Physician Award for his contributions and accomplishments in pediatric infectious diseases.

The award, which Dr. Pickering received at the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society's 29th Annual Dinner and Awards presentation in Toronto, Ontario, Canada, is given annually to a pediatrician whose clinical work, research, and teachings have been recognized both nationally and internationally over a long period of time.

"I was really thrilled about being awarded the Distinguished Physician Award," said Dr. Pickering. "I think it's a great honor to receive an award from your peers. It was an award for my body of work, particularly in the areas of patient care, teaching, and mentoring."

Mentoring Makes a Difference

Throughout his career, Dr. Pickering has focused on not only providing the best patient care and conducting his own research; but also on fostering the careers of other pediatricians and health care providers.

"The opportunity to mentor young physicians and healthcare professionals is something that I not only enjoy but also have been rewarded for I see how the people I have had the opportunity to mentor have continued on and further developed their careers and to provide care to children."

Dr. Pickering learned the value of mentoring early on in his own career and credits his own mentoring experience as a young physician with teaching him how important it is to have a mentor.

"My first year in medical school, I had the opportunity to work with a pediatric neurologist. That was really the defining moment. It illustrated to me the importance of having a strong, committed mentor."

Public Health Policies for Immunizations

Dr. Pickering has been at CDC for six years. He believes that working at CDC has not only given him the opportunity to work with "an outstanding group of people" but also "the opportunity to help with public health policies that impact large numbers of children in the areas of immunization."

"None of us like to see either our children or any child ill from an infectious disease. In the last 10 to 20 years, there has been a plethora of immunizations that have been developed that have prevented thousands of deaths in this country and throughout the world."

Learning of Dr. Pickering's receiving this honor, CDC Director Julie L. Gerberding, MD, MPH, said:

"CDC is very proud of Dr. Larry Pickering for receiving the Distinguished Physician Award from PIDS. His cumulative contributions to children's health in the US and around the world are extraordinary. I'm really heartened to see our societies recognizing CDC's work."


Larry K. Pickering, MD, is senior advisor to the director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Executive Secretary of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) and Professor of Pediatrics in the Department of Pediatrics at Emory University School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia. He is board-certified in pediatrics and pediatric infectious diseases by the American Board of Pediatrics. He received his medical degree from the West Virginia University School of Medicine, and subsequently completed his pediatric residency and infectious diseases fellowship at St. Louis Children's Hospital, Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri.

Dr. Pickering is past president of the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society of North America and a past member of the Infectious Diseases Sub-Board of the American Board of Pediatrics. He is a member of the Board of Directors of the National Foundation of Infectious Diseases. Dr. Pickering is a past member of the Board of Directors of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), the Program Committee of Inter-Science Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy, the Maternal and Child Health Subcommittee Study Section of the NIH, the Executive Committee and chair of the Research Committee of the Section on Breastfeeding of the AAP, and Research Advisory Committee A of the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation. He is a member of the International Society for Research in Human Milk and Lactation, the Society for Pediatric Research and the American Pediatric Society and the Program Committee of IDSA.

Dr. Pickering's research interests include immunizations, infectious diarrhea, child-care related illnesses, and protective factors in human milk. He is past associate editor and the current editor of the Red Book® of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), coeditor of the third edition of the book Principles and Practice of Pediatric Infectious Diseases, and sits on several editorial boards. Dr Pickering is a recipient of the Edward J. van Liere Research Award and the Distinguished Alumnus Award of the West Virginia University School of Medicine and the Founder's Award of the Southern Society for Pediatric Research. He was named Outstanding Clinical Faculty Member by the graduating class at the University of Texas Medical School at Houston and Outstanding Faculty Member for Research by the Eastern Virginia Medical School in Norfolk.

Page last updated: May 16, 2007
Content source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
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