American Association for Clinical Chemistry
Better health through laboratory medicine
2013 Award for Outstanding Contributions to Management Sciences and Patient Safety

Charles D. Hawker, PhD

Dr. Charles Hawker is Scientific Director for Automation and Special Projects at ARUP, where he has been for 21 years. Dr. Hawker is also Professor (Adjunct) of Pathology in the University of Utah, School of Medicine. Prior to joining ARUP, over a twenty year period, he held various positions in research and development and management at Laboratory Procedures, Inc. (Upjohn) and SmithKline Beecham Clinical Labs. At ARUP he has installed several major automation and robotic systems that have made ARUP the most automated clinical laboratory in North America. He is a past president of the Association of Clinical Scientists (ACS), the National Academy of Clinical Biochemistry (NACB), and the Clinical Ligand Assay Society (CLAS). He is the current Secretary of the ACS and Secretary of the Management Sciences and Patient Safety Division of the American Association for Clinical Chemistry (AACC). He has received the John V. Bergen Award of the Clinical and Laboratory Standards Institute (CLSI) in recognition of unique and significant contributions that have advanced CLSI organizational directives and objectives, the Professor Alvin Dubin Award from the NACB for contributions to the profession and to the Academy, a Diploma of Honor from ACS, and the Becton Dickinson Award from the Association for Laboratory Automation for significant contributions to medical systems engineering.

Dr. Hawker received a BA (Chemistry) from Illinois Wesleyan University in 1962, an MS (Biochemistry) from the University of Wisconsin (Madison) in 1965, a PhD (Biochemistry) from the University of Pennsylvania (Philadelphia) in 1967, and an MBA from Washington University (St. Louis) in 1985. He is a co-author of chapters on clinical laboratory automation in the 4th and 5th Editions of the Tietz Textbook of Clinical Chemistry and Molecular Diagnostics, and the 6th Edition of the Tietz Fundamentals of Clinical Chemistry. He is also the author of a chapter on clinical laboratory automation in the December, 2007 issue of Clinics in Laboratory Medicine. He chaired two subcommittees that developed standards for CLSI and a special interest group that developed a new chapter in Health Level Seven’s Standard 2.4. He is a frequent lecturer on laboratory automation to national and international audiences. He has three issued patents and has published 42 peer-reviewed papers, 14 book chapters or invited reviews, two invited editorials, and 46 abstracts. His research accomplishments include the development of one of the first blood tests for human parathyroid hormone, which was widely used in the diagnosis of parathyroid and calcium disorders, and the discovery of a precursor form of the hormone, calcitonin, which lead to the development of a blood test useful in management of patients with septic shock. His most recent research efforts have focused on the use of machine vision systems for automated quality inspection of clinical laboratory specimens, particularly the development of an automated camera system that uses optical character verification (OCV) to identify mislabeled specimens.