Several leaders in the field of sleep medicine and two members of Congress are recipients of the 2020 American Academy of Sleep Medicine (AASM) awards.

“I would like to congratulate the 2020 award recipients, who join an elite group of past honorees due to their invaluable and unique contributions to the field of sleep medicine,” says AASM president Kelly Carden, MD, in a release. “These leaders and pioneers in clinical practice, academic research, education, and advocacy have helped support the American Academy of Sleep Medicine’s mission by advancing sleep care and enhancing sleep health to improve lives.”

The 2020 AASM award recipients, who were selected by the AASM board of directors, are:

Richard B. Berry, MD, FAASM

Nathaniel Kleitman Distinguished Service Award for dedication to the sleep field and significant contributions in the areas of administration, public relations and government affairs

Berry is professor of medicine at the University of Florida (UF) in Gainesville, medical director of the UF Health Sleep Center, and director of the UF Sleep Medicine Fellowship. He also is a staff physician at the Malcom Randall VA Medical Center. Berry is deputy editor of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, past president of the AASM Foundation, and served on the AASM board of directors. He was chair of the AASM Sleep Apnea Definitions Task Force, the NPPV Titration Task Force, and the AASM Scoring Manual Editorial Committee. Berry received the AASM Educational Excellence award in 2010 and the Stuart Quan JCSM Editorial excellence award in 2019. He served on the first American Board of Internal Medicine Sleep Medicine Test-Writing Committee and wrote Sleep Medicine Pearls, a popular sleep medicine textbook. His research interests include home sleep apnea testing, treatments for obstructive sleep apnea including positive airway pressure, and polysomnography technology.

Atul Malhotra, MD, FAASM

William C. Dement Academic Achievement Award for exceptional initiative and progress in the areas of sleep education and academic research

Malhotra is a pulmonary, critical care, and sleep medicine physician at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine. His research interests include the pathogenesis of obstructive sleep apnea and the pathophysiology underlying its complications. He runs a large NIH-funded laboratory and is the author of more than 500 research articles, books, chapters and reviews. Malhotra has delivered hundreds of lectures in the United States and around the world and has appeared in dozens of media reports on sleep and sleep disorders.

Madeleine M. Grigg-Damberger, MD, FAASM

Excellence in Education Award for outstanding contributions in the teaching of sleep medicine

Grigg-Damberger is professor of neurology at the University of New Mexico School of Medicine where she also serves as medical director of Pediatric Sleep Medicine Services, associate director of the Clinical Neurophysiology Laboratory, and program director of the Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship Training Program. A member of the editorial board of the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, Grigg-Damberger also helped develop the AASM criteria for recording and scoring polysomnography in adults, children, and most recently, infants.

Representative Zoe Lofgren and Representative Rodney Davis

Mark O. Hatfield Public Policy or Advocacy Award for developing public policy that positively affects the healthy sleep of all Americans

Representatives Zoe Lofgren (D-Calif.) and Rodney Davis (R-Ill.) are sponsors of the Sleep Health Caucus in the U.S. Congress. Their leadership will guide the prioritization of sleep health at the federal level to support the AASM in advancing sleep care and enhancing sleep health to improve lives. Lofgren also sponsored the “ZZZ’s to A’s Act,” a House Bill directing the U.S. Department of Education to study the relationship between school start times and adolescent health, well-being, and performance. Studies show that later school start times help reduce tardiness, enhance academic performance, and improve teen driving safety.