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Prof Marta Cohen elected VP of The Royal College of Pathology

Professor Marta Cohen OBE
30 November 2023

Congratulations to Professor Marta Cohen OBE, who has been elected as a Vice President (VP) of The Royal College of Pathology (RCPath).

Back in 2018, Marta became the first female professor in the RCPath and she’s now broken new ground again. 

She said: “It fills me with pride to be the first Latin American woman to reach this position. I first found out when I received an email from the College. And the first thing I did was to call my family – oh my god! – I was delighted. I tried to video call my daughters but they didn’t answer, and they reacted with concern about the reasons for the urgency!

“Then I got a call from an unknown number and it was the President of the RCPath calling to congratulate me.”

Pathology is the study of disease. It can relate to every aspect of patient care, from diagnostic testing and treatment advice to using cutting-edge genetic technologies and prevention. As Marta puts it: “We’re like detectives. We’re diagnosticians and we can form conclusions about a patient depending on the different samples – it might be hair, or nails, or something else – and the wider context of the patient.”

Marta has been elected to the role of VP with a focus on learning and will serve a three-year term in office. She said: “I love teaching others to see how they develop. I want to bring more people into the field. I’m passionate about post-graduate education, and I want to help nurture new young pathologists into our profession. There is a big hole in the workforce and some countries are struggling to recruit.”

Marta has been a part of Sheffield Children’s for 20 years and is the Trust’s Head of Department and Clinical Director of Pharmacy, Diagnostics and Genetics.

She said: “Sheffield Children’s feels like a family. My colleagues are amazing, and we are flexible with each other and supportive of one another. We have a good working environment, and a fantastic team; you can speak up and not be scared.”

Away from Sheffield Children’s, Marta’s work has led her to be involved in an incredible range of national and international organisations, and her role in the investigation of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) was recognised in 2020 when she was awarded an OBE.

Alongside Sheffield Children’s and The RCPath, Marta has held a number of other roles including President of IPPA (International Paediatric Pathology Association) 2016-2018, IPPA Course Director (2014-2018); ESP Council Board (2022-2024), Director of the ESP Giordano Fellowship in Paediatric and Perinatal Pathology (2015-), Scientific Advisory Group Lullaby Trust, Academic Advisory Board, Academy of Forensic Sciences and Sudden Unexplained Death in Childhood Foundation UK.

Marta is also the academic lead of RCPath’s Pre/Perinatal/Paediatric Pathology Speciality Advisory Committee (SAC).

The RCPath recently announced Marta’s appointment after their Annual General Meeting. The RCPath has 11,500 members worldwide and oversees training in 17 different specialties.

Congratulations Marta on another incredible recognition!

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