Dr. John G. Hanly

2018 Distinguished Investigator Award

John Hanly, born in Ireland, obtained his medical degree in 1978 at the National University of Ireland in Cork. Following post-graduate training in Internal Medicine and Rheumatology, he relocated to Canada in 1984 for fellowship training in Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology at the University of Toronto.  Additional research training followed at McMaster University and Cornell University, New York City.

In 1987, John joined the Division of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Dalhousie University, Halifax and was promoted to full professor in 1997. As part of a diverse clinical rheumatology practice, he has had a special interest in systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE). He has held administrative roles in education and received numerous teaching awards over his career. He was appointed Division Head of Rheumatology at Dalhousie University in 1994, a position which he held until 2005.

John’s passion for research paved the way to success despite competing responsibilities. His research program evolved from bench research early in his career to the study of clinical outcomes in rheumatic diseases. SLE has been a major interest, particularly its neuropsychiatric manifestations, but his work has touched on several areas of clinical rheumatology. With 230 publications to his credit, of which 150 report peer-reviewed original research, he has a notably prolific academic record.

Throughout his career, including his senior years, John has been a “builder”. Under his leadership, the Arthritis Centre of Nova Scotia (2002) and the Arthritis Research Centre (2006) were established to integrate clinical care with research. He has mentored junior researchers and is an active collaborator with many investigators, including the Systemic Lupus International Collaboration Clinics (SLICC) group that he chaired from 2008-2012. Since 2011, he has been Research Director for the Department of Medicine and his stewardship has coincided with an increase in faculty and resident research productivity. Currently, he is working to secure an endowed Research Chair in Rheumatology. If the words of Patrick Henry, “there is no way of knowing the future, but by the past” hold true, then success on this front can very reasonably be expected!