AGA Family of Websites:

Distinguished Mentor Award

Established in 2004, this recognition prize honors an individual for achievements as an outstanding mentor over a lifelong career. To read about all 2021  AGA recognition prize winners, please read the press release

Recognition Award nominations are under review. AGA will announce the 2024 recipients by press release in Spring 2024.

Recognition Award nominations are open through Sept. 28, 2023.


Established in 2004, the Distinguished Mentor Award recognizes one individual for their achievements as an outstanding mentor.


  • Nominees have dedicated long-term efforts to the mentoring of others in in digestive disease fields. Mentees may range from students and trainees, to fellows, junior faculty or those in practice.
  • Nominees must have a current AGA membership.
  • Recipients of the Distinguished Mentor Award become ineligible to receive other AGA recognition prizes for a period of three years subsequent to their receipt of the award.

Selection process

  • The recipient is selected by the AGA Recognition Prizes Panel constituting members of the AGA Diversity Committee, AGA Institute Clinical Guidelines Committee, AGA Institute Education and Training Committee, AGA Institute Practice Management and Economics Committee, and AGA Institute Research Policy Committee.
  • The AGA Governing Board ratifies the recipient.
  • An individual may only receive one AGA recognition prize per year.

Nominations are reviewed according to the eligibility criteria listed above and the following review and selection criteria. Nominees:

  • Have demonstrated exemplary service to AGA through service or leadership on AGA committees, journal editorial boards and/or the governing board. Recognition as an AGA Fellow is also considered.
  • Have fostered the utmost, ethical and inclusive academic standards in classroom, clinical and research environments, including a focus on diversity, equity and inclusion.
  • Have positively influenced the professional pursuits of mentees, through for example, inclusion as co-authors on publications or co-investigators on grants, by providing opportunities for presentations at extramural research conferences, and/or through sponsorship in other professional pursuits related to digestive health.
  • Have numerous former mentees who have gone on to clinical practices or faculty appointments, and to success in securing professional appointments, leadership positions, research discoveries, honors and awards, and/or grant funding. Irrespective of the mentoring focus, the nomination should quantify and describe the impact of the mentorship on the development of others.

Current members of the AGA Recognition Prizes Panel and AGA Governing Board are prohibited from submitting or supporting nominations.


The recipient is recognized at the AGA Awards Ceremony during Digestive Disease Week®.

Nomination process

All nominations are submitted online by a primary nominator who is an AGA member. The names of additional AGA members who support the nomination should be listed on the nomination form and included as signatories in the nomination letter.

Complete nomination packages include the following supporting materials, uploaded in PDF format. Please title the files using the nominee’s last name, first initial and the type of file (i.e., DoeJ_Letter.pdf, DoeJ_CV.pdf).

  • A nomination letter, not to exceed three pages, signed by the primary nominator and additional AGA members who support the nomination. Additional signature pages beyond the three-page limit are allowed when the letter has multiple signatures.
  • Nominee’s curriculum vitae.

Please direct all questions about this and other AGA recognition prizes to 301-941-2619 or via email at [email protected].

Recipients (2005-2024)

2024 John Pandolfino, MD
2023 Satish S.C. Rao, MD, PhD, AGAF
2022 Anna Lok, MD, AGAF
2021 Vay Liang W. Go, MD, AGAF
2020 Juanita Merchant, MD, PhD
2019 Fred S. Gorelick, MD
2018 Mary K. Estes, PhD, AGAF
2017 John Carethers, MD, AGAF; Emeran Mayer, MD, PhD
2016 Pauline K. Lund, PhD; Anil K. Rustgi, MD, AGAF
2015 Susan J. Henning, PhD; M. Bishr Omary, MD, PhD
2014 Gregory J. Gores, MD, AGAF; Robert S. Sandler, MD, MPH, AGAF
2013 John T. LaMont, MD, AGAF
2012 Michael Camilleri, MD, AGAF
2011 Chung Owyang, MD
2010 Tadataka Yamada, MD, AGAF
2009 Jerry S. Trier, MD, AGAF
2008 Michael Field, MD
2007 Henry J. Binder, MD
2006 Young S. Kim, MD
2005 Nicholas F. La Russo, MD, AGAF