Gochberg, Pham Receive 2019 Distinguished Investigator Awards

Today, faculty in the Department of Radiology received 2019 Distinguished Investigator Awards from the Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research. Daniel Gochberg, PhD, Professor of Radiology, and Wellington Pham, PhD, Associate Professor, were among 37 researchers inducted into the Academy’s Council of Distinguished Investigators at Radiological Society of North America’s 2019 Annual Meeting in Chicago.

An honor only bestowed on the top 10 percent of academic radiology faculty, the Distinguished Investigator Award recognizes individuals who have made significant contributions to the field of imaging research. 

“It is a privilege and honor to be inducted into the Academy’s Council for Distinguished Investigators,” said Dr. Pham. “I would like to extend my appreciation to the Department of Radiology and the Vanderbilt University Institute of Imaging Science for the leadership and support that has enabled me to explore science, and collaborate with an incredible team of researchers across campus.”

“I am grateful,” added Dr. Gochberg. “The facilities, support and collaboration at the Imaging Institute and Radiology have made this possible, since they have allowed me to focus on the science.”

To be considered for the award, specific criteria must be met, including the publication of at least 25 peer-reviewed manuscripts as first or senior author, and at least six years of funding as a Principal Investigator (PI) on a major federal research grant. 

Currently, they serve as PIs on their respective National Institutes of Health R01 grants. Dr. Gochberg’s project, “CERT Imaging of Cancer,” has been funded by the National Cancer Institute. Dr. Pham’s project, “Validation of Retinal Abeta as a Potential Biomarker of Alzheimer’s Disease,” has been funded by the National Institute on Aging.

Together, they join 11 Vanderbilt radiology colleagues who have previously been honored with the Distinguished Investigator Award. Colleagues include Drs. Jeff Carr, Li Min Chen, Bruce Damon, Manus Donahue, John Gore, Charles Manning, Vicky Morgan, Reed Omary and Seth Smith. 

“I would like to congratulate Drs. Gochberg and Pham on this accomplishment, and welcome them to the Council,” said Reed Omary, MD, MS, Carol D. and Henry P. Pendergrass Professor and Chair, Department of Radiology, and Co-chair of the Academy’s Council of Distinguished Investigators. “Together, they are making great strides to advance imaging science. I’m excited to see what they achieve next.”

Dr. Gochberg joined faculty at Vanderbilt in 2002. He completed his PhD in Physics, as well as his postdoctoral training, at Yale University. His research is primarily focused on developing novel magnetic resonance imaging methods for quantitatively characterizing biophysical properties of tissue. 

Dr. Pham earned his PhD in Medicinal and Biological Chemistry from the University of Toledo. Following the completion of his postdoctoral training at University of California, Los Angeles, and Harvard Medical School, he joined Vanderbilt as faculty in 2006. His research interests include the integration of medicinal chemistry and nanotechnology with molecular imaging for the discovery of biomarkers and molecular imaging probes.

To read the full press release from the Academy for Radiology & Biomedical Imaging Research, click here.


Daniel Gochberg, PhD

Daniel Gochberg, PhD

Wellington Pham, PhD

Wellington Pham, PhD