American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

2017 ACS/Pfizer Award Recipients

The ACS/Pfizer Surgical Volunteerism and Humanitarian Awards recognize and celebrate ACS Fellows and members whose altruism, vision, leadership and dedication provide models to emulate and whose contributions have made a lasting difference.

We are grateful to the philosophical and financial support for these awards provided by Pfizer, Inc., and in the past, the Pfizer Medical Humanities Initiative.

Surgical Volunteerism Award

The ACS/Pfizer Surgical Volunteerism Award—offered in four potential categories each year—is given in recognition of those surgeons who are committed to giving back to society by making significant contributions to surgical care through organized volunteer activities. The awards for domestic, international, and military outreach are intended for ACS Fellows in active surgical practice whose volunteerism activities go above and beyond the usual professional commitments, or retired Fellows who have been involved in volunteerism during their active practice and into retirement. ACS members who have been involved in significant surgical volunteer activities during their postgraduate surgical training are eligible for the resident award. Surgeons of all specialties are eligible for each of these awards.

For the purposes of these awards, "volunteerism" is defined as professional work in which one’s time or talents are donated for charitable clinical, educational, or other worthwhile activities related to surgery. Volunteerism in this case does not refer to uncompensated care provided as a matter of necessity in most practices. Instead, volunteerism should be characterized by the prospective, planned surgical care to underserved patients with no anticipation of reimbursement or economic gains. The Military category of this award is intended to recognize active duty Fellows who have performed volunteer and/or humanitarian activities beyond the course of assigned military duties.

Surgical Humanitarian Award

The ACS/Pfizer Surgical Humanitarian Award is given "In recognition of those surgeons who have dedicated a substantial portion of their career to ensuring the provision of surgical care to underserved populations without expectation of commensurate reimbursement."

This award is intended to honor an ACS Fellow who has dedicated a significant portion of his or her surgical career to full-time or near full-time humanitarian efforts rather than routine surgical practice. This effort may reflect a career dedicated to "missionary surgery", the founding and ongoing operations of a charitable organization dedicated to providing surgical care to the underserved, or a retirement characterized by surgical volunteer outreach. Having received compensation for this work does not preclude a nominee from consideration, and, in fact, may be expected based on the extent of the professional obligation.

Past Award Winners

Surgical Humanitarian Award

Domestic Volunteer Award

International Volunteer Award

Military Volunteer Award

Resident Volunteer Award


The 2010 ACS/Pfizer Surgical Volunteerism and Humanitarian Awards nomination process is now open. The awardees will be announced in September and recognized at the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress in San Francisco, CA, in October. These awards recognize ACS Fellows and members whose altruism, vision, leadership, and dedication provide models to emulate and whose contributions have made a lasting difference. The deadline to submit a nomination is February 15, 2019.

How to nominate