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Michael Leavitt, Martin Gerstel, Alex Kotzer, Lana Skirboll, Amy Patterson, Alan Krensky, Joel Saltz

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The Personalized Medicine Coalition has awarded its Leadership in Personalized Medicine Award to Michael Leavitt, secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services.
 
Leavitt has served as HHS secretary since January 2005 and is scheduled to leave his post in early 2009. Prior to that, he headed the Environmental Protection Agency and was elected three times as the Governor of Utah.
 
Leavitt “has provided extraordinary leadership in the recognition of the importance of personalized medicine in healthcare,” Harvard Medical School’s Raju Kucherlapati said in a statement issued by the PMC.
 
Edward Abrahams, executive director of the PMC, said that Leavitt’s leadership “raised the level of awareness about the promise of personalized medicine to heights it would not have reached otherwise.”
 

 
Compugen has appointed Martin Gerstel as president and CEO, effective Jan. 1, 2009.
 
Gerstel, who has been chairman of the company since 1997, will take the reins from Alex Kotzer, who will remain a director of the company.
 
Gerstel previously was co-chairman and CEO of Alza, a member of the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America, and he is a director of Evogene, Itamar Medical, the Weizmann Institute of Science, the Hebrew University, and other companies and organizations.
 

 
Lana Skirboll, director of the National Institutes of Health’s Office of Science Policy, has been named acting director of a reorganized Division of Program Coordination, Planning, and Strategic Initiatives.
 
Amy Patterson will serve as acting director of the science policy office.
 
Alan Krensky will leave his spot as head of the former Office of Portfolio Analysis and Strategic Initiatives, which is being subsumed by DPCPSI, and will go back to work at the National Cancer Institute, while serving as a senior advisor to the deputy director of NIH.  
 

 
Joel Saltz has joined Emory University’s Woodruff Health Sciences Center as the Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholar in Biomedical Informatics.
 
Saltz is director of Emory’s Center for Comprehensive Informatics and also serves as Emory Healthcare’s chief medical information officer.
 
Saltz formerly was chair of the Department of Biomedical Informatics and a senior fellow at the Ohio Supercomputer Center at Ohio State University. He also has worked with the National Cancer Institute’s Cancer Biomedical Informatics Grid.

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