Pauline W. Chen attended Harvard University and the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University and completed her surgical training at Yale University, the National Cancer Institute (National Institutes of Health), and UCLA, where she was most recently a member of the faculty. In 1999, she was named the UCLA Outstanding Physician of the Year. Dr. Chen's first nationally published piece, Dead Enough? The Paradox of Brain Death, appeared in The Virginia Quarterly Review and was a finalist for a 2006 National Magazine Award. She is also the 2005 co-winner of the Staige D. Blackford Prize for Nonfiction and was a finalist for the 2002 James Kirkwood Prize in Creative Writing.