The COMP Gold Medal

The Gold Medal is the highest award given by the Canadian Organization of Medical Physicists and is given to currently active or retired individuals to recognize an outstanding career as a medical physicist who has worked primarily in Canada. A significant contribution is defined as one or more of the following:

  • A body of work which has added to the knowledge base of medical physics in such a way as to fundamentally alter the practice of medical physics.
  • Leadership positions in medical physics organizations which have led to improvements in the status and public image of medical physicists in Canada
  • Significant influence on the professional development of the careers of medical physicists in Canada through educational activities or mentorship

The medal will be awarded as appropriate candidates are selected and generally will not be given more than once per year.

Nominations for the 2022 medal are hereby solicited. Nominations are due by March 30, 2022 and must be made by a Full Member of COMP. Nominations must include:

1. The nominator's letter summarizing the contributions of the candidate in one or more of the areas listed above;
2. The candidate's CV;
3. The candidate's publication list (excluding abstracts) which highlights the candidates most significant 10 papers;
4. Additional 1 to 2 page letters supporting the nomination from three or more members of COMP.

Please forward nominations electronically to Khadija Cutcher (khadija@comp-ocpm). 

Candidates selected for the medal will be invited to attend the COMP Annual Scientific Meeting where the award will be presented by the COMP President. Travel expenses will be paid for the medal winner. The medal winner may be asked to give a 30 minute scientific presentation at the COMP meeting in addition to a short acceptance speech when the medal is presented.

2022 COMP Gold Medal Winner

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The Canadian Organization of Medical Physicists (COMP) is pleased to announce that the recipient of the 2022 Gold Medal is Dr. Joanna Cygler.  The Gold Medal is the highest award given by COMP and recognizes an active or retired member who has worked mainly in Canada, has had an outstanding career, and has made a significant contribution to the field of medical physics in Canada. 
 
A significant contribution is defined as one or more of the following:
 
  • A body of work which has added to the knowledge base of medical physics in such a way as to fundamentally alter the practice of medical physics.
  • Leadership positions in medical physics organizations which have led to improvements in the status and public image of medical physicists in Canada
  • Significant influence on the professional development of the careers of medical physicists in Canada through educational activities or mentorship
Over a career that has spanned nearly 5 decades, Dr. Cygler has provided global leadership in radiation physics and has tirelessly trained a future generation of professionals to her exacting standards. Today she is considered a pioneer of critical medical physics technologies and a driving force behind efforts to enhance the recognition of medical physicists in the radiation oncology workplace. 
 
After starting her career as a research scientist in Poland, Dr. Cygler moved to Canada, and in 1984 became a research associate in the Medical Physics Department at the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton. Since then, she has held increasingly senior positions in both research and academia and is currently the Senior Medical Physicist at the Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre.
 
As a lead of the radiation oncology physics residency program at Ottawa University, Dr. Cygler cultivated a reputation as an inspirational educator who worked tirelessly to ensure her students were armed with the knowledge required to excel in their careers.  With high standards for success, Dr. Cygler demanded excellence from her students, and provided excellent guidance in return. Her nurturing of the next generation didn’t end in the classroom; Dr. Cygler’s CV is full of the names of former residents that she has mentored, co-authored publications with and who have moved on to successful careers in medical physics.
 
While a distinguished teacher, Dr. Cygler is perhaps best known for her academic clinical practice which bridged the gap between clinical need and the development of technology and processes. Following the discovery of a serious error in computer generated dose distributions Dr. Cygler spearheaded an Ontario task force to create guidelines for the safe implementation of computer-based treatment planning systems. The work of this task force served as the provincial quality standard and was long recognized as international best practice. She has also developed and pioneered the use of many devices and software that are in regular use by medical physicists worldwide, including MOSFET detectors, OSL dosimetry systems, and electron MC. 
 
Dr. Cygler has been an active contributor to the international medical physics landscape, and through her leadership in IAEA, AAPM and ESTRO committees, training initiatives and task groups, has been impactful in improving the status and public image of Canadian medical physicists. In recognition of her accomplishments, she is one of only a very small number of Canadian physicists who have been appointed both as a fellow of COMP and a fellow of AAPM.
 
A ceremony recognizing Joanna Cygler, her achievements, and this honour, will be held at the COMP ASM on Friday June 24, 2022.
The Canadian Organization of Medical Physicists (COMP) is pleased to announce that the recipient of the 2022 Gold Medal is Dr. Joanna Cygler.  The Gold Medal is the highest award given by COMP and recognizes an active or retired member who has worked mainly in Canada, has had an outstanding career, and has made a significant contribution to the field of medical physics in Canada. 
 
A significant contribution is defined as one or more of the following:
 
  • A body of work which has added to the knowledge base of medical physics in such a way as to fundamentally alter the practice of medical physics.
  • Leadership positions in medical physics organizations which have led to improvements in the status and public image of medical physicists in Canada
  • Significant influence on the professional development of the careers of medical physicists in Canada through educational activities or mentorship
Over a career that has spanned nearly 5 decades, Dr. Cygler has provided global leadership in radiation physics and has tirelessly trained a future generation of professionals to her exacting standards. Today she is considered a pioneer of critical medical physics technologies and a driving force behind efforts to enhance the recognition of medical physicists in the radiation oncology workplace. 
 
After starting her career as a research scientist in Poland, Dr. Cygler moved to Canada, and in 1984 became a research associate in the Medical Physics Department at the Cross Cancer Institute in Edmonton. Since then, she has held increasingly senior positions in both research and academia and is currently the Senior Medical Physicist at the Ottawa Hospital Cancer Centre.
 
As a lead of the radiation oncology physics residency program at Ottawa University, Dr. Cygler cultivated a reputation as an inspirational educator who worked tirelessly to ensure her students were armed with the knowledge required to excel in their careers.  With high standards for success, Dr. Cygler demanded excellence from her students, and provided excellent guidance in return. Her nurturing of the next generation didn’t end in the classroom; Dr. Cygler’s CV is full of the names of former residents that she has mentored, co-authored publications with and who have moved on to successful careers in medical physics.
 
While a distinguished teacher, Dr. Cygler is perhaps best known for her academic clinical practice which bridged the gap between clinical need and the development of technology and processes. Following the discovery of a serious error in computer generated dose distributions Dr. Cygler spearheaded an Ontario task force to create guidelines for the safe implementation of computer-based treatment planning systems. The work of this task force served as the provincial quality standard and was long recognized as international best practice. She has also developed and pioneered the use of many devices and software that are in regular use by medical physicists worldwide, including MOSFET detectors, OSL dosimetry systems, and electron MC. 
 
Dr. Cygler has been an active contributor to the international medical physics landscape, and through her leadership in IAEA, AAPM and ESTRO committees, training initiatives and task groups, has been impactful in improving the status and public image of Canadian medical physicists. In recognition of her accomplishments, she is one of only a very small number of Canadian physicists who have been appointed both as a fellow of COMP and a fellow of AAPM.
 
A ceremony recognizing Joanna Cygler, her achievements, and this honour, will be held at the COMP ASM on Friday June 24, 2022.

COMP Gold Medal Recipients

2021

Gino Fallone

Gino B. Fallone

   

2019

Terry Peters

 2012

 

David W.O. Rogers

David W.O. Rogers' gold medal talk - page 131

2018

Anna Celler

2011

Jake Van Dyk

InterACTIONS article on Jake Van Dyk - page 105

2017

Jerry Battista

Jerry Battista's acceptance speech 

2010

Aaron Fenster

2016

G. Peter Raaphorst

InterACTIONS article on G. Peter Raaphorst

2009

Margaret E. J. Young

Margaret E. J. Young's acceptance speech - page 136

2015

Michael S. Patterson

Michael S. Patterson's acceptance speech - page 72

2008

Ervin B. Podgorsak

Ervin B. Podgorsak's acceptance speech - page 116

2014

Chris Thompson

Chris Thompson's acceptance speech

2007

John C. F. McDonald

2013

John Aldrich

2006

John (Jack) Cunningham, Sylvia Fedoruk, Douglas Cormack

InterACTIONS article on gold medal recipients - page 135