2009 - Judges Bios

The nominees were evaluated and two winners selected by a Judging Panel of three world-renowned cardiologists.
Chairman: Robert O. Bonow, M.D. Goldberg Distinguished Professor Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine Chief, Division of Cardiology Co-Director, Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute Northwestern Memorial Hospital, Chicago, IL (USA).


Robert O. Bonow, M.D.

Robert O. Bonow is the Goldberg Distinguished Professor at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, Chief of the Division of Cardiology at Northwestern Memorial Hospital, and Co-Director of the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute. He received his MD degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. Before joining Northwestern in 1992, Dr. Bonow was Deputy Chief of the Cardiology Branch at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. Dr. Bonow is recognized for his research and teaching in a variety of cardiac diseases, including coronary artery disease, valvular heart disease, and heart failure. He has authored or co-authored more than 370 published papers and 80 book chapters. He serves on the editorial boards of 11 medical journals, and is one of the four principal editors of the 7th and 8th editions of Braunwald’s Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine.

Dr. Bonow is past-President of the American Heart Association (2002-2003) and a Master of the American College of Cardiology (2008). He is a past member of the Board of Trustees of the American College of Cardiology, the Board of Directors of the American Heart Association, the Subspecialty Board on Cardiovascular Disease of the American Board of Internal Medicine, the Clinical Research Roundtable of the Institute of Medicine, and the Board of Extramural Advisors of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. He is past chair of the ACC/AHA guidelines committee on valvular heart disease and past chair of the ACC/AHA Task Force on Performance Measures.

Among his honors are the NIH Director's Award, the U.S. Public Health Service Commendation Medal and Outstanding Service Medal, and elected membership in the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians. He is the recipient of the Distinguished Leadership Award (2003), Distinguished Achievement Award (2005), and Gold Heart Award (2007) of the American Heart Association, and the Distinguished Fellowship Award (2000) and Distinguished Service Award (2006) of the American College of Cardiology.


Jeroen J. Bax, MD Department of Cardiology, Leiden Unversity Medical Center, Leiden (The Netherlands).


Jeroen J. Bax, MD

Professor Jeroen J. Bax is Director of non-invasive imaging at the Leiden University Medical Center (LUMC), Leiden, The Netherlands. He is also responsible for clinical research in the department of cardiology at the LUMC.

His research is related to clinical applications of cardiac imaging, in the fields coronary artery disease, heart failure and electrophysiology. He has developed an extensive international network and many collaborations to facilitate the conduct of extensive research on cardiovascular imaging.

He is currently (07-08) the program chair of the annual meeting of the European Society of Cardiology (ESC), and member of the ESC Board.

He will be the program chair of the annual scientific meeting of the American Society of Nuclear Cardiology (09). He has chaired the international conference of nuclear cardiology (ICNC) and cardiac CT imaging from 2004-2007.

He has authored more than 700 papers in international peer reviewed journals.

He is Associate Editor of the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. He is on numerous other editorial boards.


Alessandro Distante, MD FESC, FACC Cardiology Professor, University of Pisa ISBEM and IFC-CMR, Pisa, Brindisi and Lecce, Italy.


Alessandro Distante, MD

2009 Jury Panel

Cardiology Professor – Cardio-Vascular Department of the University of Pisa.

Clinical, Scientific and Teaching Experience

After receiving his education in Pavia, Boston, New York, Pisa and Lecce, he directed, from 1976 to 1998, the Cardiology Ultrasound Laboratory in the Clinical Physiology Unit of CNR in Pisa. He is one of the founders of the International Cardiac Doppler Society where he served as Chairman from 1976 to 1990. Since 1998 he held the position of Scientific Director of the Salento Division of the Clinical Physiology Institute of CNR and since 1999 served as Director of the Istituto Scientifico Biomedico Euro Mediterraneo (ISBEM – Euro-Mediterrenean Biomedic and Scientific Institute), located in Brindisi. As a co-founder of theEuropean Journal of Echocardiography and a member of the HALL of FAME of Echocardiography, he developed and chaired (1997 and 1998) EUROECHO within the European Society of Cardiology.

He has organized several national and international scientific seminars in the cardio-vascular field, and has provided scientific tutoring to students of different nationalities at the University of Pisa, at ISBEM and at IFC-CNR of Pisa and Lecce.

He has published, in cooperation with L. Donato, P.L. Prati and J. A. Salerno, 4 editions of "Il cuore: Arterie e Vene", J.W. Hurst et al, and is the author and co-author of more than 300 scientific papers published in International Medical Magazines with a citation impact factor of approximately 700 publications.

During 33 years (1975 to 2008), he has worked on national and international scientific projects serving as Director of the Operating Unit or as a Principal Investigator in the following areas of study: Biomedical technology, such as ultrasound (innovative echocardiography, Echo Stress, Echocontrast, non-invasive tissue characterization), techniques and drugs for the diagnosis and therapy of Angina Pectoris and of Myocardial Infarction, physiopathology of the coronary system and coronary reserve in arterial hypertension, Trasferimento Tecnologico nella Sanità (Technological Advancements in the Health Field), Nuova Ingegneria Medica (New Medical Engineering), Sistema Integrato Linee Guida Infarto miocardio (Guidelines of an Integrated System for Myocardial Infarction), Biomarkers per la Dissecazione Aortica (Biomarkers for Aortic Dissection), Disturbi Cardio-Polmonari indotti da alterazioni del Sonno e della Vigilanza (Cardio-Pulmonary pathologies induced by alterations in Sleep and Alertness).

He is the creator, in Brindisi, of the CERSUM (Centro Europeo Ricerca Sviluppo Ultrasuoni Medicine – European Center for Research and Development of Ultrasound in Medicine) and has contributed to the growth of the Summer School, located in Salento, dedicated to the study of Augmented Reality in Surgery, within the Marie Curie program.