Winter Brain Pioneer Awards were introduced in 2017 to honor individuals that have made a lasting impact on the field of neuroscience, as well as the Winter Conference on Brain Research.

Pioneers are nominated by their colleagues and chosen based on a review of their careers as well as their contribution to Winter Brain over the years.  Pioneers will present an overview of their career followed by shorter presentations from junior investigators whose work was inspired by the Pioneer’s work.

In continuing with the tradition of recognizing excellence in the field of neuorscience and committed contributions to Winter Brain, two new Pioneers will be selected for the upcoming 56th meeting. To nominate someone for this award, please visit the WCBR submission website, log in, and submit the required description of the candidate’s contributions to neuroscience and to WCBR. Self nominations are allowed. The deadline for Pioneer nominations is Friday, June 23, 2023. If you nominated someone last year and they weren’t selected, we encourage you to nominate them again for 2023. Please note that the effort you put into the nominating process helps us very much, as you may have historical information about the nominees contributions to WCBR as well as other contributions to science that are not readily available. 

Standard panel and poster submissions will open in mid-June and announcements will be made via email. 

Past Pioneers


Marisela Morales, M.S., Ph.D.

Phil Skolnick, Ph.D., D.Sc.


Jacqueline F. McGinty, Ph.D.
Mark Geyer, Ph.D.


Eliot L. Gardner, Ph.D.
Fritz Henn, D.Phil., M.D.


Barry E. Levin, M.D.
Oswald (Os) Steward, Ph.D.


Lakshmi Devi, Ph.D.
Daniel Weinberger, M.D.


Jill Becker, Ph.D.
William Catterall, Ph.D.
Miles Herkenham, Ph,D.
George Koob, Ph.D.
Sarah Leibowitz, Ph.D.
Roger Nicoll, M.D.
Charles O’Brien. M.D., Ph.D.
Suzanne Zukin, Ph.D.