AOF W. Douglas Ward, PhD, Educator of the Year Award

Deadline: 2021 Application Cycle is closed

National Industry Recognition Award

The designation Educator of the Year is awarded to an individual who not only emulates the osteopathic profession’s highest standards of excellence in teaching, but one who is passionate about osteopathic medicine has made a significant impact on the academic advancement of osteopathic students and has made long-standing contributions to the profession in the academic arena. 

Congratulations to the 2021 Educator of the Year, Per Gunnar Brolinson, DO - VCOM


The nominee need not be a DO, but must be associated with and currently involved in osteopathic education.  The nominee must also meet the following criteria:

  • Has made a demonstrated impact on students, peers, his/her academic institution, and the osteopathic profession
  • Has made long-standing contributions to the profession in the academic arena
  • Demonstrates compassion in his/her role as an educator
  • Exhibits leadership in his or her role as an educator
  • Demonstrates commitment to osteopathic medicine and the profession
  • Exemplifies and encourages osteopathic principles in his or her teachings



  • Completed nomination form - self-nominations not accepted
  • Four (4) letters of recommendation/support from four references, including:
    • Letter of Support from Nominator
    • Letter of Support from a current or former employer or a current or past member of the AOA, AOF, or institution’s board of directors. A signed Letter of Support must be submitted by the supporter on their affiliation’s letterhead.
    • Letter of Support from a current/former student
    • Letter of Support from a direct report
  • The nominee’s current Curriculum Vitae or Resume (include current memberships, osteopathic or other)
  • Optional: Supporting documentation in the form of formal commendations, citations or awards, newspaper or magazine articles, or other media-related profiles will be accepted, but shall serve only as evidence to support the nomination



The recipient will be recognized at the 2021 AOF’s Honors event. In addition, the winner will be recognized in various AOF publications, on the website, and through social media outlets.

The award was re-named in 2015 after W. Douglas Ward, PhD, passed away. Dr. Ward was a twenty-eight year veteran of the American Osteopathic Association, a member of AOF’s inaugural grant review committee and a recognized leader throughout the osteopathic profession. Throughout his life, Dr. Ward was dedicated to raising the standard of osteopathic medical education within the profession.