From left: Joan Reede, Soha Ashrafi, Thomas Fleenor and Lisa Muto. Image: Rick Groleau
Soha Ashrafi, associate director of neuroscience research, and Thomas Fleenor Jr.,data analyst in the Office of Educational Quality Improvement, were honored with the 2019 Daniel D. Federman Staff Award for Exceptional Service at a Dec. 10 ceremony in Armenise Amphitheater.
“Ashrafi’s official job title does not come close to capturing her role within the Department of Neurobiology, nor the impact that she has had on the culture within the department and on the broader neuroscience community at HMS,” said Joan Reede, HMS dean for diversity and community partnership, and host of the ceremony.
“Soha has proposed and enabled a number of creative collaborations to capitalize the great potential of the neuroscience community, and at least one other department wants to create a position to replicate the practices Soha successfully created and implemented in her department,” added Reede.
Fleenor was recognized for leading the development of the new Education Data Warehouse, a system that centralizes the many IT platforms and data feeds that support the offices and programs in the Program in Medical Education. Through his efforts, faculty and staff can now access, visualize, interpret and act on critical data related to their students, courses and clerkships that previously would take months to access.
“Through his personal initiative, consistently going above and beyond his core job duties, Thomas has made a significant, direct and lasting impact on the students, staff and faculty at HMS,” said Reede.
The annual award, named for the late Daniel Federman, a former HMS dean for medical education, recognizes HMS staff for exceptional institutional engagement and the highest standards of service, as well as for serving as inspiration to their peers.
Federman, who was also the HMS Carl W. Walter Distinguished Professor of Medicine and Medical Education, championed the intrinsic value of staff contributions to the HMS mission and overall success of the School.
In a recorded video message, Federman said, “When an institution like Harvard … stands and comments, ‘This person did something that helped our mission,’ you can’t help but get a little catch in your throat. It’s an important moment.”
The call for nominations for the 2020 Daniel D. Federman Staff Award for Exceptional Service will be announced by email this spring in the MyHMS newsletter and on the Office for Diversity Inclusion and Community Partnershipwebsite.