Philip Kern, MD, professor of medicine, has served nearly 50 years providing exceptional education and clinical care and conducting groundbreaking research, with 14 of those years dedicated to advancing the mission of the University of Kentucky.

To recognize his incredible contributions, Dr. Kern was awarded the UK College of Medicine’s highest honor in medical education at the 2023 Awards Convocation ceremony.

Dr. Kern received the William R. Willard Dean’s Recognition Award, bestowed upon a faculty member who has demonstrated significant and longstanding dedication to students and trainees in the medical field.

Dr. Kern is an endocrinologist, physician-scientist, and professor in the UK College of Medicine Department of Internal Medicine. His storied career includes leading the Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS) for the past 14 years. He has also served as the associate vice president for clinical and translational sciences for the University of Kentucky since 2021. Previously, he was director of the Barnstable Brown Diabetes and Obesity Center from 2009-2015.

As an educator, Dr. Kern is an active mentor who has impacted hundreds of graduate students, postdoctoral fellows, and early-career faculty. Many learned under him when he served as a principal investigator and founding member of the Alliance for Diabetes and Obesity Research (ADORE), an interdisciplinary team that was dedicated to finding solutions for one of Kentucky’s most urgent health needs.

Dr. Kern’s wealth of experience in research is a vital component of his successful mentorship. In 40 years of receiving National Institutes of Health (NIH) funding, he has been integral to more than 200 publications, articles, reviews, book chapters, and monographs. His research involves the study of obesity, metabolic syndrome, inflammation, lipid metabolism, diabetes and insulin resistance.

In 2019, Dr. Kern was selected by peers and leadership as a University Research Professor, the premier research recognition at UK. He has also been given the Fred and Marcielle de Beer Award.

Dr. Kern is a member of many national organizations. In 1992, he was elected into the prestigious American Society for Clinical Investigation (ASCI), and is the institutional representative at UK. In 2004 he was elected into the sister organization the American Association of Physicians (AAP). He is also a member of the American Diabetes Association, The Endocrine Society, and the American Heart Association. Since 2007, he has been named among the Best Doctors in America.

Congratulations to Dr. Kern on this incredible, well-deserved honor!