Robert Smith, MD, professor emeritus in the department of family and community medicine, has been selected to receive the American Headache Society’s (AHS) Lifetime Achievement Award, the society’s highest honor, for recognition of his service to the society and to the field of headache medicine.
The award will be presented to Smith at the AHS 54th Annual Scientific Meeting in Los Angeles June 21, 2012.
Smith has played a leading role nationally and internationally in migraine headache research dating from the early 1950s. As a general practitioner in England, he won the British Medical Association Hawthorne prize for research on pain sensitivity, was a researcher with the Wellcome Foundation on migraine from 1960-63 and played an integral role in the formation of the Migraine Trust—"the most prominent world organization promoting migraine research,” says Smith—in 1965.
Smith continued his headache research in family medicine after immigrating to the United States in 1967. He was an active member of the AHS and on its board, representing primary care practitioners, and was the founder and past director of the UC Headache Center.
He came to the University of Cincinnati in 1975 to establish the department of family medicine and was subsequently named the first Fred Lazarus Jr. Professor of Family Medicine at UC. Before coming to Cincinnati, he established the family medicine department at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, one of the first family medicine departments in the U.S.
”I was surprised, delighted and proud,” Smith says about learning of being honored with this award. "The fact that they gave this award to a family physician was something I was very happy about as well.”