National Food Magazine Awards 'Top Doc' Competition 'Best Special Event'

August 29, 2012

COLUMBUS, Ohio – The first-ever “Top Doc” Cooking Challenge – an informational and entertaining food event similar to the popular TV shows “Top Chef” and “Chopped” – has received the Best Special Event award from Food Management magazine.

The event held earlier this year featured four Ohio State University cancer experts each paired up with trained chefs from the Nutrition Services Department from the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center to create a unique dish using a mystery basket of ingredients that may help prevent cancer.

The Top Doc event was hosted by Dr. Steven Clinton, program leader of Molecular Carcinogenesis and Chemoprevention for the Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute (OSUCCC – James), along with Jim Warner, chef and program director in Medical Center Nutrition Services.

The cooking challenge featured these OSUCCC-James experts:

  • Dr. Michael Caligiuri, director of Ohio State’s Comprehensive Cancer Center and CEO of the James Cancer Hospital and Solove Research Institute,
  • Dr. Joseph Flynn, clinical director of hematologic malignancies,
  • Dr. Patrick Ross, director, division of thoracic surgery,
  • Dr. Charles Shapiro, director, breast medical oncology and leader of the breast cancer research program.

Clinton and Warner explained the cancer-fighting potential of the superfoods in each mystery basket, such as tomatoes, soy bread, cruciferous vegetables and various berries, all of which are being studied by Ohio State cancer researchers for their potential to prevent cancer.

After a panel of celebrity judges rated each meal based on taste, texture, color, appearance and presentation, Ross was declared the winner. The free event was hosted by JamesCare for Life, which provides support for cancer patients, family and friends.

“Food Management's Best Concept Awards competition is designed to shine a bright light on the innovative practices that often go unrecognized in onsite foodservice,” according to the magazine’s website. Entries are judged on a variety of factors, ranging from their creativity to their impact on a given program and their effectiveness in achieving targeted results.

“Ultimately, the Best Concept Awards are about the great, innovative, practical, think-outside-the-box ideas that allow onsite operators to manage foodservices more successfully and to better meet customer expectations,” according to the magazine.

This marks the third year that Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center has been honored by Food Management magazine. Last year, the Best Concept in Customer Service Award honored Ernie’s Café at Dodd Rehabilitation Hospital, which is a sit-down restaurant that allows patients to eat in a comfortable, communal environment that increases their social skills interactions, improves their confidence eating in a group and increases their nutrition intake.

In 2006, the magazine awarded Best Special Event to the Medical Center’s Nutrition Services Department for its Buckeye Bash. The event held at the 2005 opening Ohio State football game included a tailgate brunch and cooking demonstrations, featuring the Archie Griffin Cooking School, along the main walking route to Ohio Stadium.

The Ohio State University Comprehensive Cancer Center – Arthur G. James Cancer Hospital and Richard J. Solove Research Institute strives to create a cancer-free world by integrating scientific research with excellence in education and patient-centered care, a strategy that leads to better methods of prevention, detection and treatment. Ohio State is one of only 41 National Cancer Institute (NCI)-designated Comprehensive Cancer Centers and one of only seven centers funded by the NCI to conduct both phase I and phase II clinical trials. The NCI recently rated Ohio State’s cancer program as “exceptional,” the highest rating given by NCI survey teams. As the cancer program’s 210-bed adult patient-care component, The James is a “Top Hospital” as named by the Leapfrog Group and one of the top cancer hospitals in the nation as ranked by U.S. News & World Report.

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Click here for high-quality photo of the Top Doc competition:

Contact: Eileen Scahill, Wexner Medical Center Public Affairs and Media Relations, 614-293-3737, or

Contact Media Staff

Amanda Harper

Director of Media Relations

614-685-5420 (direct)

614-293-3737 (main)

Media staff are available by calling 614-293-3737 Monday through Friday between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m.


If after hours, please call 614-293-8000 (ask the operator to page the hospital administrative manager).

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