The CAR is proud to congratulate two radiologists on receiving the tremendous honour from the Governor General of Canada. In late December, Dr. Paula Gordon and Dr. Conor Maguire were appointed to the Order of Canada, an award whose recipients are chosen for making extraordinary contributions to the country.
The Governor General’s Office credits Dr. Gordon for “advancing ultrasound imaging and technology in the early detection of breast cancer, as a prominent radiologist and researcher.” She is hopeful the appointment will bring much needed attention to several key issues facing women in Canada and our healthcare system.
“I am beyond thrilled to be appointed,” she said. “As a radiologist who has never had any ‘protected time’ for research, it’s a huge pat on the back.”
Looking back over the course of her career, Dr. Gordon credits a combination of timing and knowledge base for many of the major high points.
“I think the major highlights of my career are in some respects, accidental: being in the right place at the right time with an unusual (for its time) skill set. It was my superb fellowship training in ultrasound with Dr. Cooperberg that led me to perform whole breast, rather than targeted ultrasound. I started finding ‘incidental’ cancers that were neither palpable nor visible on mammography. That was followed by the Avon ACRIN 666 trial, which established ultrasound as a supplemental screening modality for women with dense breasts who are at average risk or women at high risk who cannot tolerate MRI.”
Dr. Maguire, a loyal CAR member, is dual certified in radiology (Memorial University of Newfoundland 1987) and nuclear medicine (University of Western Ontario 1989). His appointment to the Order of Canada was for his “contributions to nuclear medicine and radiology, and to improving health care for patients in Alberta and in Newfoundland and Labrador.”
Dr. Maguire’s major contributions were in nuclear medicine, both in clinical program development and academic medicine. He was Chief of Nuclear Medicine at the University of Alberta Hospital from 1991 to 2012, and helped develop a comprehensive nuclear medicine service in Edmonton, including PET/CT imaging at the U of A Hospital. As a Nuclear Medicine Residency Program Director he designed a very successful combined radiology/nuclear medicine residency training program which has produced numerous dual certified specialists who continue to make significant contributions to nuclear medicine in Canada. In 2012, he returned to his home province of Newfoundland to help establish a new cyclotron facility and PET/CT imaging service in St. John’s, and during that time he served as Academic Chair of Radiology. Dr. Maguire was rendered a quadriplegic after a cervical spinal cord injury in July 1977, shortly after completing his first year of medical school at MUN. He views his Order of Canada appointment as a recognition of the incredible support that he received, primarily from his wife of 44 years, Carolyn, along with his family, friends and innumerable like-minded colleagues “This collective support has given me a full happy life and allowed me to pursue my medical vocation to the fullest of my ability.”
Congratulations to both doctors on their incredible careers and appointments to the Order of Canada.