Daniela P. Ladner, MD, MPH
Photo: Daniela Ladner
Elected 2023

Daniela P. Ladner, MD, MPH, is the endowed John Benjamin Professor of Surgery at the Northwestern Department of Surgery and Department of Medical Social Sciences. She also serves as the Vice-Chair of Research and Innovation in the Department of Surgery. Dr. Ladner graduated from the University of Zurich School of Medicine and completed her postdoctoral research fellowship at the Yale School of Medicine. She then pursued residency in general surgery and fellowship in transplant surgery at Stanford. She holds a Master of Public Health (MPH) from the Harvard School of Public Health. 

As a surgeon-scientist, Dr. Ladner specializes in liver and kidney transplantation and hepatobiliary surgery. Her extensive research portfolio is sponsored by the National Institutes of Health (NIH), making her one of the most NIH-funded surgeons in the field. She is the Founding Director of the Northwestern University Transplant Outcomes Research Collaborative (NUTORC), a collaborative effort that brings together faculty from across Northwestern to address important questions related to end-organ disease and transplantation. 

Dr. Ladner's research focuses on several key areas, including cirrhosis epidemiology [U24DK130164], risk prediction and health disparity [R01DK13164], cost of cirrhosis [R01DK13164], clinical trials to improve access to transplantation for African American patients [U01DK137258], biomarkers (proteomics) of cirrhosis progression, and process improvement for liver cancer screening. 

Aside from her research accomplishments, Dr. Ladner demonstrates exemplary leadership through her involvement in various professional organizations. She recently graduated from the Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine program (ELAM) and currently serves as a councilor of the American Society for Transplant Surgeons (ASTS). She is also sought after as a featured speaker for named lectureships. Her memberships include the American Surgical Association (ASA), and the Alpha Omega Alpha (AOA) society. 

Recognized for her commitment to mentorship, Dr. Ladner has an impressive track record of guiding and supporting trainees and faculty. Her dedication has earned her numerous teaching awards, and she was honored with the Mentor of the Year Award in 2023, the highest recognition for mentors at Feinberg. Additionally, Dr. Ladner is the Founder of the transplant Summer Student Immersion Program, which provides valuable opportunities for high school, college, and medical students. She also serves as the Program Director of the Northwestern Summer Research Program for Medical Students [T35DK126628] and as the Program Director for the postdoctoral T32 Transplant Surgery Scientist Training Program for physician-scientists [T32DK077662].  

Overall, Dr. Ladner is a nationally recognized leader in the field, renowned for her expertise in cirrhosis and transplantation, as well as her commitment to advancing research and mentorship in the medical community.