UMKC School of Medicine Welcomes New Chair of Pediatrics

The UMKC School of Medicine has announced that Jeanne M. James, M.D., FAAP, MBA, has been named the school’s new chair of the Department of Pediatrics. James will also serve as pediatrician-in-chief at Children’s Mercy and pediatrics department chair at the University of Kansas School of Medicine.

“Dr. James has incredible expertise and experience that will further enhance the academic excellence of Children’s Mercy and I look forward to working with her on behalf of our students” said Mary Anne Jackson, M.D., dean of UMKC School of Medicine.

Most recently, James served as chief of cardiology at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW) and held the Leigh Gabrielle Herma Endowed chair for cardiology and served as the medical director of cardiology for the hospital.

Before joining MCW in 2017, James spent more than two decades at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital and the University of Cincinnati advancing through the academic ranks, ultimately achieving the rank of professor and earning progressive leadership roles. She began at the academic rank of instructor in the Department of Pediatrics, a faculty position accompanying her appointment as a Proctor Scholar in the department and a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of Jeffrey Robbins, Ph.D..

Throughout her career in Cincinnati, James continued working with the lab and developed many productive research collaborations. In addition, she served the Heart Institute as Pediatric Cardiology Fellowship program director, medical director of Cardiovascular Genetics and director of the Mouse Echocardiography Core. Among other roles, James served the University of Cincinnati as chair of the Department of Pediatrics Reappointment, Promotion and Tenure Committee and was a member of the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Institutional Review Board.

James earned her bachelor’s degree in chemistry at West Virginia University and went on to the West Virginia School of Medicine. At 20 years of age, she was the youngest member of her class, but was widely recognized not for her age, but for her early achievements and leadership. She completed her pediatrics residency at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, followed by her fellowship in Pediatric Cardiology, also at Vanderbilt. During this time, she was a research fellow in the Molecular Physiology and Biophysics lab of Michael M. Tamkun, Ph.D.

A year-long, national search to fill this position was co-led by Drs. Shawn St. Peter and Tamorah Lewis and included many representatives from UMKC School of Medicine, Children’s Mercy and KU Hospital.

“I thank all who played a role in helping us fill this important position – expectations were high and the committee delivered,” said Jackson. “No doubt Dr. James will be a leader and a great addition to our faculty.”

SOM research office taking applications for SPiRe Grant

The School of Medicine Office of Research is seeking applications for the Sarah Morrison Pilot Research Fund (SPiRe), an internal grant for clinical and basic scientists. Application deadline is noon, March 1.

The grant provides support to develop preliminary data or pursue high-risk innovative research that will enable submission of highly competitive applications to national funding sources.

To be considered, research must either be performed at the School of Medicine or be in collaboration with faculty at the school where at least 50 percent of the research is performed. Tenure-track, tenured, research and clinical faculty are eligible to apply for the grant.

Standard awards are $15,000 to be spent during the course of two years. If a compelling case can be made for additional funding, up to $20,000 may be requested.

Full application guidelines and the application packet are available online.

Questions prior to preparing and submitting applications may be directed to Paula Monaghan-Nichols, associate dean for research, at nicholsap@umkc.edu or 816-235-6663. Questions about applications should be directed to Mark Hecker, director of research administration, at heckerm@umkc.edu or 816-235-6015.

Changes announced in Physician Assistant program, Department of Graduate Health Professions

Lindsay Abernethy
Lindsay Abernethy

Lindsay Abernethy, MMSc, PA-C, has been selected to serve as the interim program director of the School of Medicine’s Master of Medical Science-Physician Assistant program. The appointment is part of a recent restructuring within the Department of Graduate Health Professions in medicine and the PA program.

Abernethy takes over the role held previously by Katherine Ervie, who served as program director from the inception of the program in 2012 until January 2021. Abernethy will direct the clinical curriculum and provide overall leadership of the PA program.

She first joined the School of Medicine faculty in 2018 as an adjunct assistant professor. She previously served as assistant director of clinical education with the South University Physician Assistant Program in Savannah, Georgia.

Abernethy received her master’s degree in Physician Assistant Studies from Emory University. Before joining UMKC, she was the first physician assistant to practice medicine on the island of Anguilla, where she provided family and emergency medicine care. Upon moving back to the United States, she found her niche in occupational and urgent care medicine. She continues to serve the Kansas City area through clinical practice one day a week.

Other staff and faculty changes include Laura Begley, Ph.D., serving as assistant dean for Gradate Health Professions; Sara Cox, MPAS, PA-C, as director of didactic education; and Stephanie Painter, MPA-PA-C, serving as director of assessment and student learning.

Begley joined the School of Medicine in 2009 as program assistant for the school’s Master of Science in Anesthesia program. She spent seven years as program coordinator for the Office of Allied Health and most recently was appointed associate director of the Department of Graduate Health Professions. She will provide leadership in accreditation and assessment, as well as supervision of student support personnel.

Cox has been part of the school’s PA program faculty since 2018 and will work to ensure that didactic curriculum content meets the program’s defined goals, student learning outcomes and accreditation standards.

Painter joined the School of Medicine in 2020. She will oversee the assessment needs across the program’s didactic and clinical curriculum to assess students for mastery of defined learning outcomes and competencies.

Two additional staff also have joined the department: Darlene Hirst as adjunct assistant professor in the PA program and Amber Blair as a student support specialist.

Edwin Kreamer, M.D., continues to serve as medical director for the physician assistant program and Julie Banderas, Pharm.D., will continue to serve as assistant dean and department chair for Graduate Health Professions in Medicine.

School of Medicine faculty among those to be honored at university-wide event

Kansas City Mayor Quinton Lucas spoke at the 2019 faculty recognition celebration

Six School of Medicine faculty will be among more than 60 UMKC faculty recognized in a university-wide virtual event to honor promotion, tenure, endowed chairs, distinguished professorships, and unique UMKC and UM System awards throughout 2020.

These recognitions occur throughout the year and are typically celebrated together at an annual event. They have taken on special meaning this year as all members of the university community have faced unprecedented challenges in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic.

This year, instead of a live event, faculty will be recognized at a virtual event on Feb. 12, where they will be honored in a special video celebrating their accomplishments. Following the event, the video will be posted on the Provost’s website for the remainder of the year.

“The effort, flexibility and patience our faculty have put into this difficult year have not gone unnoticed, and it is especially important to recognize the significant contributions of our faculty this year,” said Chancellor Mauli Agrawal. “Many of our students say their relationships with our faculty are some of the biggest reasons they love being a Roo.”

Last October, the School of Medicine recognized 73 faculty members who received promotions and tenure, and special School of Medicine awards.

Medical school faculty recognitions featured in the video include:

New Endowed Chairs:      

  • Jannette Berkley-Patton, Ph.D., James B. Nutter, Annabel Nutter and Harry Jonas M.D. Professorship, School of Medicine
  • Mamta Reddy, M.D., Vijay Babu Rayudu Endowed Chair of Patient Safety, School of Medicine

Chancellor’s Award for Career Contributions to the University:
This is one of the highest honors for a UMKC employee who has made significant contributions to higher education at UMKC over the course of their career and has significantly enhanced the mission of the university.

  • Paul Cuddy, Pharm.D., vice dean and professor, School of Medicine

Chancellor’s Award for Embracing Diversity:
This award recognizes and celebrates UMKC faculty, staff and registered student organizations that embrace diversity by celebrating diversity in all aspects of university life, creating inclusive environments, culturally competent citizens, and globally oriented curricula and programs.

  • School of Medicine Summer Scholars Program, School of Medicine

Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Teaching:
This is the university’s highest honor for excellence in teaching. It recognizes and celebrates UMKC faculty who are consistently superior teachers at the graduate, undergraduate or professional level over an extended period of time.

  • Mike Wacker, Ph.D., associate professor, School of Medicine

Provost’s Award for Excellence in Teaching:
This award recognizes and celebrates teaching excellence among UMKC clinical and teaching faculty.

  • Monica Gaddis, Ph.D., associate teaching professor, School of Medicine

Elmer F. Pierson Good Teaching Awards:
These are awarded annually to outstanding teachers in the Henry W. Bloch School of Management, and the Schools of Dentistry, Law and Medicine.

  • Jennifer Quaintance, Ph.D., assistant dean, School of Medicine

Trustees Faculty Fellows Award:
Through this award, trustees recognize the very best faculty who distinguished themselves through scholarship and creativity.

  • Peter Koulen, Ph.D., professor, School of Medicine

UMKC Vision Research Center receives NIH award to promote diversity in health-related research as part of ongoing glaucoma studies

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has awarded the UMKC Vision Research Center a new $120,399 grant that promotes the training of researchers from diverse backgrounds as part of ongoing research projects to develop novel glaucoma therapies.

Funded through the NIH’s National Eye Institute (NEI), the new funding is part of a larger NIH initiative to enhance the diversity of the research workforce. It will aid in recruiting and supporting students, postdoctorates and eligible investigators from diverse backgrounds including those from racial and ethnic groups that have been shown to be underrepresented in health-related research.

“We are pleased to receive this support from the NIH,” said Peter Koulen, Ph.D., director of the Vision Research Center. “This funding is a substantial contribution to our mission to provide a more diverse workforce in biomedicine and the overall mission to discover new and improved treatments and therapies for vision health world-wide.”

The funding is part of Koulen’s NEI-supported program exploring novel therapeutic strategies to preserve the viability and function of the nerve cells of the retina affected by glaucoma. The research targets a novel mechanism of nerve cell protection utilizing intracellular calcium signaling as a drug target to treat degeneration of nerve cells in glaucoma.

“The new award is part of research that will allow us to generate data needed for the development of novel glaucoma drugs to complement existing therapies targeting abnormally high pressure in the eye,” Koulen said. Koulen and his team at the Vision Research Center received a $1.16 million NIH grant earlier this year to investigate a mechanism that allows nerve cells to communicate effectively and could lead to the development of such new treatments for glaucoma.

Glaucoma is a major cause of irreversible vision loss and blindness in the United States and worldwide. The disease causes degeneration of the retina and optic nerve, which connects the eye to the brain. Preventing such degeneration and the death of affected cells is currently the only feasible way to prevent vision loss due to glaucoma.

In the past year, Koulen has won two other major NIH research grants. His current study of new chemical compounds to treat and prevent age-related macular degeneration received a $1.16 million grant. He is also part of an innovative $1.5 million project exploring a novel tissue-preservation method that could help meet far-reaching clinical needs in ophthalmology and other fields of medicine

This glaucoma research will focus on alternative strategies directly targeting the damaging effects of the disease on the retina and optic nerve.

“Just like elevated blood pressure predisposes patients to stroke, high pressure inside the eye is a predisposing factor for glaucoma,” Koulen said. “There are currently several therapies available to patients to reduce abnormally high eye pressure, but when these therapies fail or cease to be effective, glaucoma and the accompanying vision loss continue to progress.”

Koulen’s project, including the new award to promote diversity in health-related research, will determine how to boost the cell-to-cell communication that retinal nerve cells use to defend themselves from disease and injury. The hope is this will protect these cells from the damaging effects of glaucoma.

If successful, Koulen’s research will result in new drug candidates that would contribute to “neuroprotection” as a strategy to treat and prevent glaucoma.

New therapies could potentially act in concert with current eye pressure lowering drugs. Other areas of medicine, such as cancer treatment, have effectively employed the concept of using complementary drug action in combination therapies.

Grant will help Black churches fight COVID-19

Berkley-Patton, JanetteCOVID-19 has infected, hospitalized and killed Black Americans at a higher rate compared with whites. As it has with other health disparities, the University of Missouri-Kansas City is going to partner with churches to fight this one. The National Institutes of Health has awarded UMKC a two-year, $1.9 million grant to do so as part of its Rapid Acceleration of Diagnostics-Underserved Populations (RADx-UP) initiative.

“By working with 16 churches, which are trusted institutions in the African American community, we will greatly expand COVID-19 testing opportunities and access to care in low-income areas of Kansas City,” said Jannette Berkley-Patton, Ph.D., principal investigator of the grant, director of the UMKC Health Equity Institute and a professor at the School of Medicine. “This RADx-UP grant will help people who probably never would have gotten tested get the support they need.”

The team of investigators on the grant are from UMKC, Children’s Mercy, University of Kansas Medical Center, University of Massachusetts, University of California-San Francisco and Johns Hopkins University. In addition to churches and their leaders and members, they will work in partnership with Calvary Community Outreach Network and the Kansas City Health Department for testing, contact tracing and linkage to care services.

“By working with 16 churches, which are trusted institutions in the African American community, we will greatly expand COVID-19 testing opportunities and access to care in low-income areas of Kansas City. This RADx-UP grant will help people who probably never would have gotten tested get the support they need.” – Jannette Berkley-Patton

“One of our aims with the grant is to not only expand testing but to also help get the community prepared for the vaccine,” said Mary Anne Jackson, M.D., an investigator of the grant, dean of the UMKC School of Medicine and an infectious disease expert at Children’s Mercy. “Vaccine confidence relies on trust and transparent communication of vaccine science and safety. The mistrust among people of color about the COVID-19 vaccine stems back toward experience in other research impacting this population, namely the Tuskegee trials in 1932 to study syphilis where Black males were not provided treatment.”

Key social determinants contribute to the disparities for Blacks and COVID-19 including essential public-facing jobs, cultural norms like medical and contact tracing mistrust and limited access to health care. African Americans also have a high burden of chronic health conditions including obesity, diabetes and heart disease, which put them at an increased risk for COVID-19.

Studies, including UMKC investigations led by Berkley-Patton, have shown that community-engaged research with African American churches has led to health screening uptake for HIV and STD testing and reducing risks for diabetes. Yet, no proven COVID-19 testing interventions exist for African American churches, which have wide reach and influence in their communities, high attendance rates and supportive health and social services for community members.

At churches, the grant aims to reach people through sermons, testimonials, church bulletins, and text messages. This also includes faith leaders promoting testing – and getting tested in front of their congregations – so that people can actually see what the testing process looks like.

To date, Berkley-Patton’s work has been supported by more than $12 million in federal grants over the past 14 years. The community-engaged research she has conducted in partnership with faith communities has benefited people in the Kansas City area as well as Alabama and Jamaica.

“At UMKC, we fight racial inequity at all levels, and that includes life-saving health care at our public urban research university,” said UMKC Chancellor Mauli Agrawal. “We are proud of the work Dr. Berkley-Patton is leading through proven strategies at places of worship. We know this team of investigators and their partners will help keep our community safer from COVID-19.”

UMKC Trustees honor SOM’s Peter Koulen for distinguished work in research

Koulen, PeterThe UMKC Board of Trustees has selected UMKC School of Medicine’s vision and neuroscience researcher Peter Koulen, Ph.D., as the recipient of the 2020 UMKC Trustees’ Faculty Fellow Award.

Dr . Koulen is the school’s Felix and Carmen Sabates/Missouri Endowed Chair in Vision Research and serves as director of basic research at the Vision Research Center. Under his guidance, the research center and the UMKC Department of Ophthalmology have secured millions of dollars in grants from the National Institutes of Health and other recognized sources for their groundbreaking work in developing technology and therapies to recognize and treat chronic diseases of the eye and brain.

He has been awarded more than 50 extramural grants totaling over $15 million, and he recently was the recipient of two R01 NIH/NEI awards totaling over $4 million. With a focus on the retina as part of the central nervous system, he has peer-reviewed publications in more than 100 prestigious journals including International Journal Molecular Science, Journal of Cell Science, Cellular Molecular Neurobiology, and Neuroscience. He also has been awarded three patents.

A member of an NIH study section committee, and active reviewer for prestigious scientific journals, he has been the recipient of more than 20 awards and honors since joining our School of Medicine, including recognition as the NT Veatch Award for Research and Creativity in 2013. Dr. Koulen’s work has been acknowledged worldwide. The Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology, a global organization of researchers, honored Koulen as a member of its 2018 Fellows Class.

He also serves as a mentor and sponsor for students involved in research and he has effectively launched the careers of the next generation of physician scientists. His mentorship has placed graduates in highly competitive research environments such as NIH, FDA, Harvard Medical School, Alcon Laboratories, Fresenius and numerous others.

“I am impressed that Dr. Koulen contributes with passion, grace and enthusiasm and that he truly represents what a faculty scholar should exemplify,” said School of Medicine Dean Mary Anne Jackson, M.D.. “It is my pleasure to call him a colleague and to work with him at our University.”

Each year, UMKC’s Board of Trustees selects an established faculty member for the Faculty Fellow Award to honor a nationally and internationally recognized record of research and creative achievements at UMKC.

Yusheng Liu, Ph.D., vice chancellor for research in the Office of Research and Economic Development, said the award helps the university enhance and pursue its goal to be a major urban research university with excellence, creativity, and scholarship across all disciplines.

 

 

SOM faculty recognized with annual awards, promotions

School of Medicine faculty took the spotlight during an Oct. 28 program to honor those receiving the school’s annual faculty awards and the recognition of 73 faculty members who received promotions and tenure.

The list of honorees included 58 faculty members who have been promoted to the rank of associate professor and 15 who were promoted to professor. Because of the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, the ceremony took place as a virtual celebration.

This year’s event recognized eight faculty with special honors for their outstanding contributions, including two new awards.

Clinical Affiliate Teaching Award
Emily Hillman, M.D., assistant professor of emergency medicine, received the first Clinical Affiliate Teaching Award. The honor celebrates a faculty member who is recognized for clinical teaching of medical students, graduate program students and/or graduate medical education residents and fellows at one of the school’s major clinical affiliates.

Hillman serves as director of simulation education at the school’s Clinical Training Facility as well as associate director of the emergency medicine residency program and director of the emergency medicine medical education fellowship.

Faculty Researcher Award
John Q. Wang, Ph.D., professor and endowed chair for research, received the school’s first Faculty Research Award. The honor recognizes faculty for clinical and/or bench research that contributes to the advancement of medicine, demonstrates collaboration and mentoring of medical students, residents/fellows, and/or graduate students and faculty, and also enhances the research reputation of the School of Medicine.

Excellence in Diversity & Health Equity in Medicine Award
Molly Uhlenhake, D.O., assistant professor of medicine and Red 7 Docent, receive the award that recognizes faculty engaged in efforts to create a more inclusive institutional culture that promotes success for all. It also recognizes efforts to advance the understanding of health equity, health disparities, cultural competence in medicine, and greater access and opportunities for our surrounding community.

Christopher Papasian, Ph.D., Excellence in Teaching Award
Darla McCarthy, Ph.D., associate professor of basic medical sciences and assistant dean for curriculum, received the honor for a faculty member who has contributed to medical student pre-clinical education innovation at the School of Medicine.

Louise E. Arnold, Ph.D., Excellence in Medical Education Research Award
Gary Sutkin, M.D., professor and associate dean of women’s health, received the award that acknowledges and celebrates a faculty member who has contributed and influenced the advancement of medical education innovation through scholarship and research.

Betty M. Drees, M.D., Excellence in Mentoring Awards
Fariha Shafi, M.D., associate professor of medicine, Gold 6 and Gold 7 Docent, received the 2020 Excellence in Mentoring Award. Peter Koulen, Ph.D., professor, endowed chair and director of basic research at the Vision Research Center, was honored with the Lifetime in Mentoring Award.

The mentoring awards are given annually to celebrate both a junior and a senior faculty member who have made significant contributions to enhancing and developing the careers of faculty trainees as a mentor through their generosity, listening, objectivity and by providing constructive feedback regarding career and professional and personal development.

UMKC Elmer F. Pierson Good Teaching Award
Jennifer Quaintance, Ph.D., associate research professor and assistant dean for assessment and quality improvement, was honored with the university-wide award recognizing outstanding teachers in the Black School and the schools of medicine, dentistry and law.

School of Medicine announces new assistant dean for Diversity, Equity, Inclusion

The School of Medicine announced that Doris C. Agwu, M.P.H., will serve in the new position of assistant dean for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

Agwu has 11 years of experience with diversity, equity and inclusion initiatives in academics, business and community work. Under the leadership of associate dean Tyler Smith, M.D., Agwu will work to expand the school’s focus on current diversity, equity and inclusion programs. Her new role will also include implementing new programs to recruit, educate and serve students, residents and faculty, and emphasize initiatives to ensure a positive learning environment.

At the University of Missouri-Columbia, Agwu earned a bachelor of arts in psychology, a bachelor of science in biology, a minor in business administration and a master’s degree in public health. She served as a research specialist at the University of Missouri Sinclair School of Nursing where she created strategies to address the health care needs of rural Missouri women over the age of 50. She also has served as medical department chair for Bryan University in Columbia, where she spearheaded diversity and inclusion initiatives, taught multiple courses and managed more than 20 direct reports.

In her most recent role as director of engagement and coordinator of underrepresented minority student recruitment at the University of Missouri-Columbia College of Arts and Sciences, she worked to drive inclusion, diversity and equity strategies through best practices to ensure an inclusive culture. She implemented long-term strategic outreach efforts for the college, and collaborated with senior leaders and key stakeholders on state and community programming.

A 2019 recipient of the University G.O.L.D. award for service to the alumni community, Agwu is the vice president of the Mizzou Black Alumni Network. She is also membership co-chair of the Griffiths Leadership Society for Women. She was selected as a member of the new, chancellor-appointed Equity Resolution Hearing Panel and is a charter member of the central Missouri chapter of The Links, Incorporated, serving as the technology/PR/communication chair.

Agwu said she understands the needs of all students to address issues of marginalization.

“I want all Black students to know that their lives matter,” Agwu said. “I want all students of color, including Asian, Hispanic/Latinx and indigenous students, to know their cultures and unique experiences are significant. I want all women to know they have autonomy over their bodies. I want all LGBTQIA students to feel embraced and supported, and for students with disabilities, that they can access everything.”

School of Medicine announces academic appointments

The UMKC School of Medicine has announced four recent appointments to academic leadership positions: John Borsa, M.D., chair of the Department of Radiology; Adam Algren, M.D., chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine; Jennifer Elliott, M.D., interim chair of the Department of Anesthesiology; and Molly Uhlenhake, D.O., director of the Continuing Care Clinic clerkship.

Borsa adds the role of the school’s academic chair of radiology to his current position as department chair at Saint Luke’s Hospital of Kansas City. A board certified vascular interventional radiologist, he is a national expert in procedures related to percutaneous treatment of venous thromboembolic disease.

A fellow of the Society of Interventional Radiology, he also is a peer reviewed author and international lecturer in his field. He has been honored three times as teacher of the year by residents and five times as a distinguished faculty presenter.

Borsa completed medical school and an internship at the University of Manitoba, and his radiology residency at the Mayo Clinic. He also completed an interventional radiology fellowship at the University of Washington in Seattle before joining the staff of Saint Luke’s Hospital in 2011.

Adam Algren, M.D.Algren, a 2001 graduate of the UMKC School of Medicine, has served as interim chair of emergency medicine since January. He is also chair of the University Health Physicians Board of Directors.

A member of the UMKC departments of emergency medicine and pediatrics since 2007, Algren has served as the chair of the School of Medicine’s Council on Selection and on the Truman Medical Centers Board of Directors.

He completed his emergency medicine residency and served as chief resident at TMC. Fellowship trained in medical toxicology at the Emory University/CDC program, Algren also served as a clinical instructor in the Emory University emergency medicine department.

Elliott, JenniferIn addition to her new role as interim chair of anesthesiology, Elliott currently serves as medical director of the Pain Management Clinic at Saint Luke’s Hospital. A 1996 UMKC School of Medicine graduate, she has served for many years as a member of the residency education committee in the radiology department.

After completing her anesthesiology residency and a fellowship in pain management at Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Elliott joined the staff at Saint Luke’s Hospital. She has been a member of the hospital’s Institutional Review Board, a member of the UMKC School of Medicine Physician Promotions Committee, and the physician chair of the Saint Luke’s Health System Opioid Stewardship Committee. She completed the UMKC Physician Leadership Development Program in 2018.

Elliott has also written numerous articles and chapters on topics in pain medicine and is the primary editor of an acute pain management handbook published in 2011.

Uhlenhake, MollyUhlenhake takes on her director’s role in the school’s Continuing Care Clinic, having previously served on the Council of Selections as vice chair and the scholarship selection committee as chair. She is currently working to develop a multidisciplinary LGBT+ clinic at TMC, where she directs primary care services.

A member of the School of Medicine docent team, Uhlenhake is also medical director of Refugee and Immigration services at the Kansas City Health Department and medical director of community outreach for TMC. She is a core faculty member for the Internal Medicine-Pediatrics residency program at TMC and for Teen Primary Care at Children’s Mercy Kansas City.

After graduating medical school at Des Moines University in Iowa, Uhlenhake completed her internal medicine-pediatrics residency the UMKC School of Medicine, where she also served chief resident. Before joining the staff at UMKC and TMC, she served at the University of Colorado School of Medicine and was the medical director of adolescent medicine at the High Street Clinic in Denver.