Samantha Martin, Ph.D., postdoctoral student in the UAB School of Health Professions' Department of Nutrition Sciences, has been selected to receive an Outstanding Postdoctoral Award for her exceptional accomplishments. Martin received the Dr. Congeniality Award for being the postdoc who has a disposition so kind and pleasant, their presence brightens the atmosphere of the work environment.

Martin, who the first American Heart Association Postdoc for the Health After Pregnancy (Intergenerational Transmission of Obesity in a Cohort of Mother-Child Dyads) study, is known in her lab as a people person, with a disposition and friendliness that not only helps her recruit participants for projects but also enables her to turn negative situations into positive ones by describing them as opportunities for learning, a nominator said. Martin herself was new to clinical research when she began working to identify mechanisms associated with obesity and cardiometabolic diseases and certain children, so she is quick to understand a new researcher’s nervousness.

“She is always smiling, and approaches each challenge with a happy, can-do attitude,” a nominator wrote. “She is the first to encourage those around her with a quick ‘don’t worry, we’ll get there.'”

Martin joined Nutrition Sciences in January 2018 and is now focused on identifying physiological and epigenetic mechanisms associated with obesity and cardiometabolic disease in children following intrauterine exposure to gestational diabetes or maternal obesity.Her postdoctoral research is under the mentorship of Cora E. Lewis, Ph.D., Paula Chandler-Laney, Ph.D., and Bertha Hidalgo, Ph.D.