Jonathan A Showstack Career Advancement Award

The Jonathan A. Showstack Career Advancement Award in Health Policy/Health Services Research is sponsored by the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies at UCSF. The award provides up to $10,000 to enable post-doctoral fellows and junior faculty to pursue educational and other opportunities that will help shape and advance their careers.

This Award was created through generous contributions honoring Jonathan Showstack’s long-standing service to the Institute and to UCSF. These gifts supported many early-career researchers since the Award’s establishment.

We are not currently accepting nominations for this Award, but hope to do so in the future as new donations to the fund are received. 

Previous Recipients

The Award has been successful in supporting a variety of faculty and trainees in conducting their health policy/health services research. The Award has provided up to $10,000, but most of the requests have varied from approximately $350 to about $5,200. The primary use of the funds has been to support course work, biostatistics consultation, and salary support for summer trainees. Their proposals were judged upon the relevance of their proposed activity to the advancement of their careers and for the most part, reflect a collaboration or mentorship with an IHPS core or affiliated faculty member. 

Several grants supported summer students to work with IHPS faculty, supporting their summer salary and contributed to the faculty having additional emerging scholar support. The following reflect several examples of how the award was used and how the award contributed to the awardee’s career pathway.

Jennifer Yarger

I was able to attend the Population Association of America conference, which otherwise, I would not have been able to attend. This provided me with professional development and networking opportunities. I used these connections as I planned additional collaborative research projects, some which helped me secure additional grant support, including a study of community factors in the incidence of teenage pregnancy with Dr. Mara Decker (an IHPS faculty member).

David Boettinger

The TICR coursework that the Showstack award helped to fund was fantastic and immensely helpful. The JS award funding allowed me to undertake a 3-day course on health economics modelling using TreeAge software. TreeAge is one of the most commonly used programs for economic evaluation and the training greatly complemented the aims of my post-doctoral work evaluating the cost-effectiveness of cardiovascular disease prevention in people living with HIV. Since undertaking the training I have completed two complex economic assessments which are currently under review at high-impact journals (CID and JIAS). Moreover, I have begun planning two future analyses that will utilize the skills I have developed in TreeAge -  1) a cost-effectiveness model of anal cancer screening in PLHIV, and 2) a cost-benefit analysis that will investigate routine SSRI use in repeat violent offenders.

Elan Guterman

The Showstack award provided funding to take a UCSF biostatistics course. In addition to new statistical tools from the course and mentorship from Drs. Kate Possin and Andrew Josephson, I collaborated with the course instructor, Dr. Elaine Allen. We examined the association between caregiver depression and emergency department use among patients with dementia using data from the Care Ecosystem trial which is based at the UCSF Memory and Aging Center. The manuscript resulted in a publication in JAMA Neurology in May 2019. I am continuing to collaborate with Dr. Possin on the Care Ecosystem trial and now have 5% salary support from the Care Ecosystem R01 grant. The increased methodological expertise was also incredibly valuable in writing an NIH K application and I am currently awaiting a summary statement for the K23 proposal that I submitted to NINDS in June 2019.

Cristin Kearns

The Jonathan Showstack support allowed me to enroll in the UCSF TICR qualitative methods course in 2013-14. This course was the first formal training that I had ever received in qualitative methods. It provided me with a broad introduction to various qualitative methodologies, which then allowed me to identify more specific methodologies that I could explore further and apply in advancing my work examining the role of the sugar industry in influencing health and health policy. This course provided me with practical training in developing appropriate research questions, and increased my network of colleagues that are using qualitative methods in their research. 

Shimi Sharief

I used the Johnathan Showstack fund to conduct study activities including paying for incentives for patients, as well as paying for the cost of publication fees of the original research paper that resulted from this study. The study was presented at multiple internal UCSF meetings as well as at the American Society of Nephrology meeting in 2017 in addition to the CMS quality conference in 2018.
It exposed me to colleagues within public health. It didn't have a direct effect on my current employment which is at a local initiative Medicaid managed care health plan, however it marks prominent milestones for both my fellowship and post graduate research training which I have represented at various job interviews.

SriLekha Tummalapalli

I am grateful for the support from the Jonathan A. Showstack Career Advancement Award which I used for data and bio-statistical resources that were instrumental in supporting my pursuits as an early clinical investigator. I have been conducting health policy research under the mentorship of Dr. Salomeh Keyhani, Professor of Medicine at San Francisco VA Medical Center and Principal Investigator of the Population Health and Policy Research Group, along with Dr. Adams Dudley.
Several areas of our research relate to foundational work led by Dr. Showstack. During the past year, I have conducted research using multiple national administrative and clinical datasets, including the National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, National Health Interview Survey, and national cohorts. My research evaluates value-based strategies to deliver high quality care for patients with kidney disease. I use quasi-experimental research designs to evaluate the impact of health policy changes and care delivery interventions.
I have demonstrated that patients with chronic kidney disease (CKD) have had substantial gaps in chronic disease management and quality of care over the past decade. I have evaluated multiple national health policies, including Medicaid expansion and the Veterans Choice Program. I have shown that Medicaid expansion was not associated with improvements in kidney disease awareness or preventative care delivery, and that the Veterans Choice Program was not associated with worse primary care delivery.


  • UCSF trainee, post-doctoral fellow or faculty member at Assistant Professor level (any series).
  • Involvement in health policy and/or health services research.
  • Relevance of proposed activity to the advancement of trainee’s/fellow’s/faculty member’s career.
  • Collaboration or mentorship by an IHPS core or affiliate faculty member is encouraged.


  • Self-nominations are encouraged.
  • Nomination should include a 1-page statement from the nominee detailing the amount requested and proposed use of funds.
  • Collaborating/mentoring IHPS core or affiliate faculty member should indicate their concurrence by signing the statement or via a separate email.
  • For nominees not currently collaborating/mentoring with IHPS faculty, the committee may identify a potential faculty member at IHPS to serve in this role.

About Jon Showstack

Jonathan Showstack, PhD, MPH, joined the Philip R. Lee Institute for Health Policy Studies in 1976. He was instrumental in building the science of health policy and health services research and in the development of the Institute as a world leader in health policy/health services research. During his over 30-year tenure at IHPS, he was an active collaborator and mentor to many individuals who have since developed successful careers in health policy and health services research.

While at IHPS, Dr. Showstack’s research focused on evaluating the relationships among organizational characteristics, costs, clinical outcomes, and patient satisfaction; the impact of policies related to undergraduate and graduate health professions education; strategic planning in health care organizations; and the assessment of medical interventions and technologies. In 2006, he became Co-Chief Information Officer of UCSF’s Office of Academic and Administrative Information Systems, and was responsible for directing the development and implementation of strategic educational and research information system initiatives.

Dr. Showstack retired in 2009 from UCSF full-time faculty status. He continues to be involved as a researcher and mentor in IHPS as UCSF Professor Emeritus.