Francis H. Straus Mentorship Awards

In 2016, the Biological Sciences Division received a gift to support a new faculty award for mentorship. The Francis H. Straus Mentorship Award honors the memory of Dr. Francis H. Straus II, MD ’57, SM ’64 as a mentor of students, residents, and fellows during his many years as a member of our faculty in the department of Pathology. Award recipients, as well as their Departments, receive a cash prize.


    • One to a clinical faculty member.  Click here for a list of BSD clinical departments
    • One to a non-clinical faculty member (PhD faculty in clinical departments and basic departments.) Click here for a list of BSD basic science departments.

Previous Award Winners


Wendy Stock, MD, Anjuli Seth Nayak Professor of Medicine


Victoria Prince, PhD, Professor of Organismal Biology and Anatomy

Nicole Cipriani, MD, Associate Professor of Pathology

  • Anita Chong, PhD, Surgery (Transplant)
  • Ralph Weichselbaum, MD, Radiation and Cellular Oncology
2017 - 2020

  • Stacie Levine MD, Medicine
  • Anne Sperling, PhD, Medicine


  • Vineet Arora, MD, Medicine
  • Stephen J. Kron, MD, PhD, Molecular Genetics and Cell Biology


  • John Alverdy, MD, Surgery
  • Catherine Pfister, PhD, Ecology and Evolution


  • Matthew Brady, PhD, Medicine
  • John Kress, MD, Medicine



  • Nominations are accepted from alumni who have either graduated or completed a residency or fellowship program more than three years ago (in this cycle, only those who received a terminal degree from the BSD or completed their training program in 2020 or before can participate).  This provides an opportunity to reflect back on your time at the University of Chicago and to consider a faculty member who has had a longstanding impact on your career path and served as an important mentor for you.
  • The nominee must be a current member of the employed (non-voluntary) faculty at the University of Chicago and hold their primary appointment in a BSD department.
  • The mentoring relationship will have had to begin while both the student/post-graduate trainee and the faculty member were on campus.
  • Current elected members of the Faculty Advisory Committee are ineligible; see list of members here.


Nomination Requirements

Nominee’s CV

    • Highlighted with activities and achievements that are relevant to this award

Nomination Letter from an alumni of a residency or fellowship program; the letter can be co-signed by multiple mentees and should describe the following:

  • The nominee’s approach to mentorship, including what actions/behaviors the mentor utilizes to optimize the mentoring relationship
  • The impact that the mentor had on the alumni’s career (from training and beyond) with specific examples
  • The broader mentoring impact on others, if known


Nomination Submission Process

  1. Complete the Google form to notify us of your nomination HERE 
  2. Upload all required materials to BOX, HERE
Nominations close on May 7th 2024

Francis H. Straus Mentorship Award

Dr. Francis H. Straus II, MD ’57, SM ’64

About Dr. Francis H. Straus

Over the course of his 40 year career at the University of Chicago, Francis H. Straus, who died in 2014 at 81, left his mark as a surgical pathologist, researcher, teacher and mentor in the department of Pathology.

An expert in endocrine pathology, Dr. Straus made numerous important contributions to the field including identifying the pathological basis of male infertility and conducting research on a team that identified the cause of a local spike in Thyroid cancer as being radiation-induced.

Although his contributions to research and patient care were important, Dr. Straus considered himself first and foremost to be an educator and mentor to trainees in the department of Pathology and students in the Pritzker School of Medicine. His contributions were significant, both inside and outside the classroom. Between 1971 and 1989, he was recognized by fourth year Pritzker students with a teaching award over 15 times.

His passion for the intellectual development of his students was just as important to him as offering encouragement and support to his students throughout the course of their training. His work could be deeply impactful, helping students identify their own skills and pursue areas that suit their interests.  His substantial and long lasting impact on those he trained was widely felt.  His wife Lorna P. Straus, LAB ’49, SM’60, PHD ’62 is professor emerita of the Department of Organismal Biology and Anatomy and herself a celebrated teacher.

Lorna, together with their son Christopher Straus, LAB’84, AB ’88, MD’92, sought to create this award as an opportunity to formally recognize the kind of longstanding and impactful mentorship exemplified by Francis Straus, in both basic science and clinical settings.