Susan Chubinskaya, PhD was the 2017 recipient of the ORS Women’s Leadership Forum Award.

She is currently the Klaus Kuettner Professor of Osteoarthritis Research, Associate Provost for Faculty Affairs and Vice-Chair for Research and Faculty Development in the Department of Pediatrics at Rush University Medical Center.

Specific Area of Interest
Post-traumatic osteoarthritis, cartilage repair and regeneration, growth factors

What are you currently working on?
My current research focuses on biologic approaches to cartilage repair and regeneration, one of which is the use of umbilical cord stem cells. In more general terms, my main interests are on the mechanisms of human chondrocytes responses (catabolic and anabolic) to injury and potential therapeutic approaches to repair.  Through the access to human cadaveric tissue I collaborate with multiple investigators across the globe.

What has been the biggest challenge/issue for you lately in your research?
My biggest challenge is lack of time due to my heavy administrative load.

What advice would you give investigators who are just starting out in the field?
Don’t give up! Stay focused, yet explore options for collaborations. Be persistent and find good mentors. Hard work will always pay off.

Is there anything in your career/research that, if you had it to do over, you would change?
Not really. I was fortunate to have great mentors who became my life friends. Being part of an internationally recognized team and having phenomenal, charismatic, and supportive department chair (Klaus Kuettner) predetermined my success, along with my dedication and hard work.

What has receiving this award meant to you?
It meant the world to me. This award is the recognition of my 25 years of dedication to the ORS community and ORS research. Through my leadership role I have had the privilege to support, mentor and impact careers of many faculty, especially women. In such, this award is the testament that I am helping to shape the future of the ORS leadership. Accomplishments and success of people who I mentor is the biggest satisfaction of mine.

September 2017