“The most rewarding aspect of my work is the progress we've made in managing people with HIV. People with HIV can now get on and live a full life. That's a huge difference from what it was before.”
“PROMINENT HIV/AIDS RESEARCHER AND CLINICIAN”
As an undergraduate at Wellesley College, Ann Collier loved both science and working with people, but she was focused on biological research. One day while trying to explain a research project to a favorite aunt, she suddenly realized she "was doing pretty esoteric stuff" and that she was headed for a career as a researcher who would have little contact with people.
She changed direction, deciding to study medicine and use her scientific skills to directly help others. For the many who have benefited from her groundbreaking work as both a clinician and researcher in the scientific battle against HIV infection and AIDS, that early decision has proven to be immensely important.
Collier came to the University of Washington as a Fellow in Infectious Diseases in 1982, near the beginning of the AIDS epidemic. "Hardly anything was known about HIV back then," she recalls. "I wasn't sure what I wanted to do as a physician at the time, but as soon as HIV was identified in Seattle, I wanted to treat and do research on this new illness."
At the time, she was Medical Director of the Harborview Medical Center-Seattle King County STD Clinic and the Madison Clinic (Harborview AIDS Clinic), one of the first in the nation organized in response to the AIDS epidemic. By 1986 she had become director of the National Institutes of Health-sponsored Adult AIDS Clinical Trials Unit (ACTU), where she remains today, continuing the research work on antiretroviral therapy that has brought her international recognition.
Nominated as a Local Legend of Medicine by Rep. Jim McDermott (D-WA-7), Collier is Professor of Medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine. A graduate of Dartmouth Medical School, she completed residencies at the University of Washington School of Medicine, and was Chief Medical Resident, Attending in Medicine at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center.
She has served on the AIDS Research Advisory Committee at NIH, the HIV Medicine Association Planning Board, and the Executive Committee and Scientific Agenda Steering Committee for the AIDS Clinical Trials Group.
She has more than 120 original research articles, chapters, book reviews and editorials related to HIV infection and antiviral drug research to her credit.
Walter Stamm, M.D. and Head of the Division of Allergy & Infectious Diseases at the University of Washington has written of her, "Ann Collier is an incredibly dedicated, skilled and insightful investigator who has been among the national and world leaders in defining the most appropriate drug therapeutic regimes for management of HIV/AIDS.
"Her dedication, energy, diligence, intelligence, and compassion have made her a leading figure in both the local and national medical scene...she is a superb clinician and teacher, and is a physician loved by those patients fortunate enough to have her as their primary care provider."
"The most important thing for me is my family," Collier says, "that and being a compassionate physician to the patients I treat and trying always to see the human side of medicine."
Appointed Acting Assistant Professor of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine; also, Medical Director, Seattle-King County Department of Public Health, Harbor view Medical Center Sexually Transmitted Diseases Clinic, Seattle
Appointed Director, Adult AIDS Clinical Trials Unit, University of Washington, Seattle
Appointed Medical Director, AIDS Clinic (Madison Clinic), Harborview Medical Center
Appointed Professor of Medicine, University of Washington School of Medicine
Dartmouth Medical School