Phil Hockberger, assistant vice president for research, received the President's Special Recognition Award from the Association of Biomolecular Resource Facilities (ABRF).
The honor, established in 2014, is awarded to the association’s members who have distinguished themselves by years of exceptional service to the organization and the shared resources community. This year marks just the second time the award has been bestowed.
Hockberger joined ABRF in 2010 and was a founding member of its first regional chapter, the Midwest Association of Core Directors, co-organizing the first and second regional meetings ever held in Chicago.
“Among his other contributions, Phil has been an active member of the light microscopy research group helping to increase the ABRF light microscopy program,” says William Hendrickson, ABRF president. “He was also a founding member of the highly successful Core Administrators Network, which has become a major segment of the ABRF community. He is a leader in the career development committee and chaired the program committee for the 2014 national meeting.”
The organization will recognize Hockberger at its annual meeting on March 28 in San Diego.
“To be just the second person recognized in this way is a true honor,” says Hockberger, who has overseen Northwestern’s Core Facilities since 2009. “A career in cores presents an amazing opportunity to bring high-end instrumentation and expertise to researchers. By overseeing these instruments — typically too expensive for any one lab — core directors play a pivotal role in pathbreaking discovery.”
As a leading member of the ABRF career development committee, Hockberger started a Chicago-based group mentorship program that brings core directors together once a month over dinner to discuss challenges of this career path.
“We began with a group of biomedical researchers and have since expanded to engineers,” says Hockberger. “One of my biggest passions is to influence the next generation of core directors to help them realize the affect they can have on the scientific discoveries of tomorrow.”
ABRF is an international society dedicated to advancing core and research biotechnology laboratories through research, technology, communication, and education. The organization includes more than 900 research community members working within or in the support of resource and research biotechnology laboratories.