Ten doctoral students, 17 post-doctoral fellows and nearly 100 clinical research fellows: These are all of the people that Dr. Dolores Lamb, who was recruited to Weill Cornell Medicine from Baylor College of Medicine as a professor of molecular biology in urology, has mentored in her professional career. Now, Dr. Lamb is being recognized for the positive impact she’s had on her trainees with the Endocrine Society’s Outstanding Mentor Award and the Society of Women in Urology’s Christina Manthos Mentoring Award.
The Outstanding Mentor Award is one of the Endocrine Society’s prestigious Laureate awards, which were established in 1944. This year, 13 leading endocrinologists, including Dr. Lamb, will be honored with a Laureate – an award that is considered to be the highest achievement in the endocrinology field. She will receive her award March 23 at the Endocrine Society’s 101st annual meeting in New Orleans.
The Christina Manthos Mentoring Award recognizes physicians and scientists who demonstrate extraordinary mentoring skills in supporting the careers of female urologists. For this, Dr. Lamb was nominated by one of her mentees, Dr. Rose Khavari, a urologist at Houston Methodist who worked with Dr. Lamb during her residency at Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Lamb will accept her award on May 4 at the American Urological Association’s annual meeting in Chicago.
“I am thrilled to be recognized in this way – both awards are surprises to me, and I am tremendously honored,” said Dr. Lamb, who joined Weill Cornell Medicine’s faculty in 2018 as vice chair for research in the Department of Urology and director of its Center for Reproductive Genomics.
“Dr. Lamb is an accomplished scientist with an extraordinary track record of mentorship as well as a role model for scientists, especially for women in science,” said Dr. Peter Schlegel, chairman of the Department of Urology and the senior associate dean for clinical affairs at Weill Cornell Medicine. “We are thrilled for her and offer our warmest congratulations on her achievement and these awards.”
Dr. Lamb has an open-door policy when it comes to her mentees – many of whom are still at her previous institutions – regardless of where she is. “If they need to talk to me, I am always available, even in a distant time zone,” she said.
She cares deeply about her trainees and is known for her many team-building exercises. At Baylor College of Medicine, Dr. Lamb encouraged her lab group to compete in Halloween contests and participate in Valentine’s Day “aphrodisiac lunches” – a tradition she’s since brought to Weill Cornell Medicine that involves students bringing in foods that have aphrodisiac properties and explaining the science behind them.
She maintains a close relationship with most of her mentees, nine of whom are now department chairs in the United States and abroad. “My mentees are the cream of the crop,” she said. “I feel like a proud mother. I am constantly nominating them for awards, or to give talks at major meetings. I really try to promote them at every stage of their careers.”
Since joining the faculty, Dr. Lamb has sat on Dean Augustine M.K. Choi’s strategic planning committee for mentoring and career development. “Dr. Choi’s commitment to mentoring is extremely refreshing,” she said, “and it was hugely important to me in terms of thinking about the culture here at Weill Cornell Medicine.”