The Women in IR Champion Award was established in 2020 and is presented annually to recognize an individual who has consistently made a significant contribution to the advancement of women in IR, such as in sponsorship, mentorship, teaching, promotion, advocacy and recruitment. The nominee must be a long-term member of SIR.
2022 Recipient - Kari J. Nelson, MD, FSIR
Kari J. Nelson, MD, FSIR is an interventional radiologist practicing in Orange County, California.
Dr. Nelson completed her undergraduate studies at the University of California, Berkeley; her medical education at the Medical College of Wisconsin; diagnostic radiology residency at the University of Virginia; and IR fellowship at the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Nelson’s career has included academic and non-academic practice. She began her career as Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of California, San Diego, subsequently exiting for private practice. After the birth of her son, she returned to academic practice at the University of California, Irvine, where she completed a fellowship in Cardiovascular and Thoracic Imaging while serving as IR clinical faculty. Dr. Nelson was subsequently promoted to Associate Clinical Professor and later, to Clinical Professor of Radiological Sciences and Urology and served as Section Chief and Medical Director of Interventional Radiology from 2014-2020. At the beginning of the pandemic, Dr. Nelson accepted a private practice IR and cardiovascular imaging position with South Coast Radiological Medical Group in the MemorialCare system, where she is currently a partner.
Dr. Nelson’s activities toward the advancement of women in IR have included volunteering in the Women in IR governing council; helping to craft the SIR Parental Leave Statement; serving as faculty advisor for both the UC Irvine IR interest group and the UC Irvine AMWA student chapter; and mentoring, training, and recruiting women as IR Section Chief. Dr. Nelson has worked locally and nationally with AMWA and with the Medical Women’s International Association for the advancement of all women in medicine.
2020 Recipient - Meridith J. Englander, MD, FSIR
Meridith J. Englander, MD, FSIR, is a practicing interventional radiologist at the Albany Stratton Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Albany, N.Y., and associate professor at Albany Medical College.
Dr. Englander completed her undergraduate degree at Smith College and The University of Pennsylvania and attended medical school at Albany Medical College where she graduated cum laude. She completed her internship in orthopaedic surgery and her residency in diagnostic radiology at Albany Medical College. Dr. Englander then went on to complete her vascular and interventional radiology fellowship at Massachusetts General Hospital. She was a clinical instructor at Harvard Medical School and was promoted from assistant professor to the rank of associate professor at Albany Medical College, where she has mentored many medical students and residents.
Dr. Englander is one of the co-founders of the Women in Interventional Radiology (WIR) section of the Society of Interventional Radiology and served as chair of WIR from 2015-2018. Currently, Dr. Englander’s roles within the Society of Interventional Radiology include chair of the SIR Government Affairs Committee, chair of the SIR Data and Benchmarking Committee/Diversity and Inclusion Advisory Group, member of the Practice Development Committee, and member of the Ethics Committee, just to name a few. In addition to her current active roles in SIR, she has previously served on additional innumerable SIR committees throughout her career. Nationally, she is involved extensively with the AMA and locally with the Medical Society of the State of New York. Dr. Englander also presently serves as an examiner for the American Board of Radiology and as a result of all of her accomplishments, she was elected as a Fellow of the Society of Interventional Radiology in 2015.
Dr. Englander’s extensive list of publications demonstrates her interests in gender equity, diversity, and the unique issues female physicians encounter while pregnant and/or in the post-partum period during training and in practice. Among her many publications, Dr. Englander wrote the SIR position statement on parental leave. She has also published in the American Journal of Radiology on the topic of clinical practice patterns based on gender. Specifically, her work detailing the distinct issues faced by female IRs was published in AJR in 2018. She has also used her platform on social media to further promote women in IR and raise awareness around these critical issues by engaging with leadership in other specialties.
She has worked tirelessly to promote, sponsor and mentor women across interventional radiology while simultaneously raising awareness around gender equity, diversity and achieving academic success for all. We congratulate her as the inaugural recipient of the Women in IR Champion Award.