Tag Archives: Announcement

SOM grad Adam Algren, M.D., appointed interim chair of Department of Emergency Medicine

Adam Algren, M.D.

Adam Algren, M.D., a 2001 graduate of the UMKC School of Medicine, has been appointed as interim department and academic chair for Department of Emergency Medicine.

An associate professor of emergency medicine and pediatrics, Algren joined the School of Medicine faculty in 2007. He currently serves as chair of the school’s Council on Curriculum.

Algren completed his emergency medicine residency at Truman Medical Center and the UMKC School of Medicine followed by a year as a chief resident. He completed his fellowship training in medical toxicology at the Emory University/Centers for Disease Control program. During his training, Algren served as a clinical instructor in the Emory Department of Emergency Medicine.

“I am deeply appreciative to be considered for the interim chair position and I look forward to being able to serve the faculty, hospital, and School of Medicine,” Algren said. “I am excited about the opportunity to grow and develop the department. I also look forward to being able to contribute to the School of Medicine expansion.”

Gratton, Matthew
Mattew Gratton, M.D.

Matthew Gratton, M.D., will step down as chair of emergency medicine on December 31. Following a six-week sabbatical, Gratton will assume an enhanced role at Truman Medical Center as associate chief medical officer. The role will include serving as the primary administrative liaison to the new TMC Medical Staff Wellness Committee. In this regard, he will work collaboratively with the UMKC Professionalism and GME Wellness committees.

Gratton was appointed chair of Department of Emergency Medicine in 2007, leading the department to national recognition as a “state-of-the-art, compassionate provider of emergency care in an environment of academic excellence.” In 2018, he was recognized with the Missouri College of Emergency Physicians’ Lifetime Achievement Award.

In Memoriam: Dr. Alan Salkind

Dr. Alan Salkind

Alan Salkind, M.D., who served nearly 20 years as a member of the UMKC School of Medicine faculty, died on Sept. 3 at Saint Luke’s Hospice House following a short battle with Parkinson’s Disease and Lewy Body Dementia.

Dr. Salkind joined the School of Medicine in 1998 as a docent and assistant professor of internal medicine and faculty in infectious diseases at Truman Medical Center. He completed his medical degree at East Tennessee State University College of Medicine and residency at Albany Medical Center in Albany, New York. Following his infectious diseases fellowship and research training in immunology at the University of Rochester’s Strong Memorial Hospital in Rochester, New York, he was faculty at University of Mississippi where we was engaged in AIDS research and later was the medical director of infectious diseases for the Heartland Health System in St. Joseph, Missouri.

A devoted instructor and mentor, Dr. Salkind was honored with the university’s 2011 Elmer F. Pierson Good Teaching Award. His research work included a landmark article published in JAMA, which revealed that 90% of those with self-reported penicillin allergy are actually penicillin tolerant, continues to be highly cited.

He retired in 2017 as professor emeritus, after serving many key roles at the School of Medicine during his career including as assistant dean of selection from 2002 to 2007, a member of the physician promotion committee, and on the faculty development committee.

Dr. Salkind is survived by his wife, Millie; three daughters, Emily (Norman), Katie and Stephanie; one son, Robert; a brother, Randy; his sister, Sue Feldman (Stuart); and two grandchildren.

No services are planned. Instead of flowers, the family requests all donations be made to the Michael J. Fox Foundation in tribute of Dr. Alan Salkind.

Read the full obituary.

 

Office of Student Affairs welcomes Bridgette Jones, M.D., as assistant academic dean

Dr. Bridgette Jones

The School of Medicine has announced that Bridgette Jones, M.D., M.S., has joined the Office of Student Affairs in a new role of assistant academic dean.

In this position, Jones will work with students across all six years of the curriculum on matters pertaining to academic affairs. She will maintain regular office hours in both the Years 1 and 2 office on the Volker campus and in  student affairs at the School of Medicine.

“We are excited to welcome Dr. Jones to student affairs where her enthusiasm for student engagement and support will contribute to the enhancement of student services,” said Interim School of Medicine Dean Mary Anne Jackson, M.D.

Jones holds a faculty appointment as an associate professor of pediatrics in the divisions of Pediatric Clinical Pharmacology, Toxicology and Therapeutic Innovation and Allergy/Asthma/Immunology at Children’s Mercy. A clinician scientist with a focus on therapeutics and interventions to improve the lives of children with allergic disease and asthma, she also serves as the associate program director for the Children’s Mercy Pediatric Clinical Pharmacology training program.

She is the inaugural chair of the Faculty and Trainee Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee and the medical director of the Office of Equity and Diversity at Children’s Mercy. In that role, she develops and maintains a pipeline of diverse and successful trainees and physicians in medicine to ensure their career development. She has also been a national advocate for diversity and equity for women in medicine.

Jones was recently nominated for the American Medical Association Inspiration Award that recognizes physicians who have contributed to the achievements of women in medicine. She will be honored by the AMA Women Physician Section with the award during the  AMA House of Delegates interim meeting in September during Women in Medicine Month.

Jones is active on a national leadership level as well. She currently serves as chair of the American Academy of Pediatrics Committee on Drugs, chair of the American Academy of Allergy Asthma Immunology Asthma and Cough Diagnosis and Treatment Committee, and serves as a member of the Food and Drug Administration Pediatric Advisory Committee.

She was appointed by the United States Secretary of Health to serve on the National Institutes of Health Task Force on Research Specific to Pregnant Women and Lactating Women. She has received funding through the National Institutes of Health and other extramural and intramural resources to support her work.

She is married to Rafiq Saad and is the mother of two daughters, Lola and Nora.

Upcoming changes announced in GME, faculty development

School of Medicine Interim Dean Mary Anne Jackson, M.D., has announced changes within the dean’s office that will take effect July 1.

Dr. Christine Sullivan, Dr. Sara Gardner, Dr. John Foxworth

Christine Sullivan, M.D., associate dean for graduate medical education for the past five years, will transition to a new role as associate dean for professional development. Sara Gardner, M.D., assistant dean for graduate medical education for the past two years, will assume the role of associate dean. John Foxworth, Pharm.D., who has served as associate dean for faculty development for the past 10 years, will become associate dean of academic enrichment.

Sullivan’s new role will focus on the development of a formal faculty mentorship program. She will work to expand resources for development training, including those that foster career progression, professionalism and physician well-being.

In her previous role with graduate medical education, Sullivan was responsible for implementing a GME Ombudsman program and establishing an annual Resident/Fellow Appreciation Day.

“It has been my great honor to serve in the role of associate dean for GME over the past five years,” said Sullivan, a professor of emergency medicine. “I truly have enjoyed advocating for our wonderfully talented residents and fellows who are the future in medicine.”

Gardner, associate professor of internal medicine/pediatrics, served as program director for the Internal Medicine-Pediatrics residency program prior to assuming the role of assistant dean.

“It’s been a privilege to work with Dr. Sullivan in the GME office,” Gardner said. “I look forward to collaborating with her in her new role in the faculty development office to support our program leaders and enhance our clinical learning environments.”

The associate dean for GME serves as the Designated Institutional Official for the school’s 35 Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education-accredited programs and as the chair of the school’s Graduate Medical Education Council.

In his new role, Foxworth, a professor of medicine, will focus more narrowly on supporting faculty, student and trainee success in academics and research. He will also oversee a new grant writing program.

He is a member of the American Society for Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics, and a fellow in the American College of Clinical Pharmacology. He has been with the School of Medicine since 1974.

“It has been a pleasure working with the school’s talented faculty, students and residents and I look forward to supporting their ongoing academic and research efforts in this new role,” Foxworth said.

Dr. Waldman appointed vice dean for strategic initiatives and stewardship

Waldman, SteveThe School of Medicine announced that Steven D. Waldman, M.D., JD, has been appointed vice dean for strategic initiatives and stewardship. In this role, he will be involved in all initiatives with a major strategic importance to the School of Medicine.

The appointment, announced by School of Medicine Interim Dean Mary Anne Jackson, M.D., took effect on April 15.

Waldman is a 1977 graduate of the School of Medicine. His roles will include developing new strategies for increasing student enrollment and furthering collaborations with regional partners. He will also coordinate new innovative infrastructure projects within the school.

As physician liaison to the UMKC Foundation, he will facilitate closer relationships with School of Medicine alumni and increase opportunities to enhance UMKC branding and fundraising in surrounding areas. He will also serve as the School of Medicine partner to the newly appointed president of the UMKC Foundation.

“All of these functions will serve to elevate the academic reputation of the medical school,” Jackson said.

Waldman previously served as associate dean and chair of the Department of Medical Humanities and Bioethics and professor of anesthesiology.  He was also part of an integral team that led the school’s preparation for a successful 2018 LCME survey visit.

A prolific writer and author of more than 36 books and numerous scientific publications, he will continue to maintain his clinical practice in pain management.

In Memoriam: Dr. Lynn DeMarco

Demarco, LynnLong-time UMKC School of Medicine faculty member and docent Lynn DeMarco, died on Feb. 15 in Leawood, Kansas. He was 85.

Dr. DeMarco joined the School of Medicine and the internal medicine staff at Truman Medical Center in 1977. He served as a docent for 10 years and continued on the School of Medicine faculty as a professor of medicine.

Interim Dean Mary Anne Jackson, M.D., was a member of Dr. DeMarco’s docent unit as a student at the School of Medicine.

“As one of the first students on his docent unit in 1977, I remember him as positively engaged with students, a wonderful clinician who always had a smile on his face.”

Jim Wooten, Pharm.D., said he remembered how years ago Dr. DeMarco helped him fit in as a new member of the School of Medicine faculty.

“At least once a week, when he used to have a clinic at TMC, I would drop by for a visit,” Wooten said. “I would get lots of clinical questions from him when he had a clinic here and at TMC Lakewood although I believe many questions were more to make me feel good about myself rather than me helping him much.  He was a good man and extremely bright.  I have no doubts that his patients will miss him and so will I.”

Before coming to Kansas City, he was in private practice at the Donahoe Clinic, later Central Plains Clinic in Sioux Falls, South Dakota.

A graduate of Creighton University and the Creighton University School of Medicine, Dr. DeMarco interned at Harbor General Hospital in Torrance, California. He completed his internal medicine residency at the Mayo Graduate School of Medicine in Rochester, Minnesota.

He is survived by his wife, Mary Dianne Markell DeMarco, daughters, Gini Collins, Theresa DeMarco, Paula (Fritz) Long, Sons, Romano (Melissa), Lynn (Nick), John (Erika) and 10 Grandchildren, Virginia, Laura, John, Dianne, and Maria Collins, Henry, Walter, and Veronica Long, Oscar and Andrew.

 

Dr. Robert Riss selected as assistant dean for career advising

The School of Medicine has announced that Robert Riss, M.D., associate professor of pediatrics and pediatric hospitalist at Children’s Mercy Kansas City, will serve as the next assistant dean for career advising.

In his new role at the School of Medicine, Riss will be responsible for oversight of all career advising services.

Riss is an associate director of medical student education and director of curriculum for the highly regarded pediatric clerkship at Children’s Mercy. His leadership in revising the pediatric clerkship curriculum using a scholarly approach and innovative facilitation of technology is cited as a reason for improved performance of students taking their NBME exams.

He has served on many leadership committees at UMKC and Childrens’ Mercy and currently serves as co-chair of the Medical Student Education Special Interest Group with the Academic Pediatric Association. He is also a faculty member of the association after recently completing the organization’s Educational Scholars Program.

Riss has received many awards for teaching and leadership including UMKC’s Elmer F. Pierson Good Teaching Award, as well as the Children’s Mercy Gold Apple Mercy Mentor Award and a faculty award for outstanding teaching support of student medical education.

He currently participates in educational research focusing on curriculum design, evaluation and implementation utilizing technology. He is an educational consultant on the NIH grant: SPeCTRE: The Sunflower Pediatric Clinical Trials Research Extension in which he is charged with designing a curriculum for primary care physicians to increase the research capacity for pediatrics in the state of Kansas.

Riss received his medical degree from the University of Kansas School of Medicine and completed his postdoctoral training as a pediatrics resident at Children’s Mercy Kansas City.

 

School of Medicine welcomes new staff

Rachel McCommon, Allan Davis

The School of Medicine has recently welcomed two new staff members in the offices of Diversity and Inclusion, and Admissions.

Rachel McCommon is coordinator of diversity and strategic initiatives. She will focus on multicultural affairs to support student and resident success and strategic planning to support faculty and staff working with a diverse student population.

Allan Davis serves as coordinator of diversity programs and recruitment. He will coordinate the school’s high school pipeline programs, Summer Scholars and the Saturday Academy.

McCommon joins the School of Medicine with more than 10 years of experience addressing areas of multicultural programing, student success, recruitment and community outreach. Her efforts have also focused on issues that impact access to higher education for underrepresented K-12 students and supporting current college students.

McCommon graduated from Emporia State University with a degree in rehabilitation service education and a minor in leadership. She received her master’s degree in higher education administration from UMKC and previously worked in the university’s undergraduate admissions office as the multicultural recruiter. She also taught college prep and life-after-college classes at Alta Vista Charter High School in Kansas City.

She has been particularly involved in issues that impact the success of women and Latinx students. McCommon actively participates in Cuerpo de Areito, a Puerto Rican folkloric dance group to support and educate others on Puerto Rican culture and traditions.

McCommon said she is excited to add to the culture and environment of the School of Medicine and values the importance of supporting students with an open-door policy. She can be reached at 235-6251 or at mccommonr@umkc.edu.

Davis joins the School of Medicine with experience as a recruiter and instructor. A graduate of Brigham Young University with degrees in American studies and theater history, he also received a Ph.D. in theater and performance study from the University of Maryland with a research focus on whiteness in the United States.

He served as a course instructor for eight years at BYU, American University in Washington, D.C., and at Maryland, and has served as a recruiter for undergraduate and graduate programs. He also managed a living-learning community at the University of Maryland. After moving to Kansas City, Davis worked at the Office of Academic Affairs at the UMKC School of Pharmacy before joining the School of Medicine.

Dedicated to cultivating a diverse student body, Davis will lead the School of Medicine’s pipeline programs to provide enriching experiences for the next generation of medical professionals. He can be reached at 235-5434 or davisall@umkc.edu.

Student research office announces 12 Sarah Morrison awards

Top row: Yicheng Bao, Shannon Demehri, Abygail Dulle, Ankit Kadakia. Middle row: Cynthia Liu, Andrew Peterson, Amber (Lelia) Sarvestani, Som Singh. Bottom row: Kevin Varghese, Firas Al-Badarin, Kathryn Kyler, Ali O. Malik

The School of Medicine Student Research Program has awarded 12 Sarah Morrison Student Research Awards for the Fall 2018 cycle. Recipients included nine medical students and three graduate students.

Sarah Morrison awards of up to $2,500 are presented to School of Medicine students each year in April and October. The awards help students become involved in and learn about a wide variety of research activities based on their interests. The research may be in the basic sciences or in clinical medicine.

Students may develop their own hypothesis and work plan or work on an established research project with their mentor. Winners of the awards are expected to present the results of the research at a School of Medicine student research event such as the UMKC Health Sciences Student Research Summit) or a similar venue as recommended by Research Administration.

More than 100 students have received Sarah Morrison awards since 2013 with an estimated $155,000 of financial support provided from the program to conduct research projects at the School of Medicine.

The next application deadline for students interested in receiving a Sarah Morrison research award is March 1 for the April award. Applicants are reviewed by a committee of faculty judges and processed through the Office of Research Administration.

For complete application information, visit the student research website.

Fall 2018 Sarah Morrison Research Awards
(Recipient / Faculty Mentor / Project title)
  • Yicheng Bao, MS 4 / Betty Drees, M.D., Professor, Dean Emerita / Prevalence and Risk Factors of Depression Among Patients with Diabetic Retinopathy
  • Shannon Demehri, MS 6 / John Wang, M.D., Ph.D., Professor, Westport Anesthesia/Missouri Endowed Chair for Research / Regulation of Src Family Kinases in the Rat Brain by Adenosine
  • Abygail Dulle, MS 5/ Paula Monaghan-Nichols, Ph.D., Professor, Associate Dean for Research Administration / Prenatal Glucocorticoid Exposure for Preterm Birth: Investigating The Role Of Glucocorticoid Receptor Phosphorylation In The Development Of Neuropathology
  • Ankit Kadakia, MS 4 / Paula Monaghan-Nichols, Ph.D., Professor, Associate Dean for Research Administration / Role of Synthetic Glucocorticoid Exposure in Ocular Development and Pathology
  • Cynthia Liu, MS 4/ Gary Sutkin, M.D., Professor and Associate Dean of Women’s Health, Victor and Caroline Schutte Chair in Women’s Health / The Prevalence and Effects of Ambiguous Language on Communication Errors in the Operating Room
  • Andrew Peterson, MS 5 / Xiangping Chu, M.D., Ph.D., Associate Professor of Biomedical Sciences / Modulation of Heteromeric Acid-Sensing Ion 1 a/3 Channels by Zinc
  • Amber (Lelia) Sarvestani, MS 6 / Geetha Raghuveer, M.D., M.P.H., Professor of Pediatrics / Long Term Outcomes and Survival Following Repair of Truncus Arteriosus With and Without Interrupted Aortic Arch Utilizing Linkage of the Pediatric Cardiac Care Consortium with the National Death Index and Organ Procurement Transplantation Network Datasets
  • Som Singh, MS 2 / Li Zhang, M.D., Professor of Biomedical and Health Informatics / The Effect of GM26870 Gene Expression on Acetaminophen Hepatotoxicity
  • Kevin Varghese, MS 2 / Alain Cuna, M.D., Assistant Professor of Pediatrics / Effectiveness and safety of repeat use of postnatal steroids for bronchopulmonary dysplasia
  • Firas Al-Badarin, grad student / Tim Bateman, M.D., Professor of Internal Medicine and Radiology / Cardiovascular Outcomes of Patients with Normal Positron Emission Tomography and Single Photon Computed Tomography Myocardial Perfusion Imaging
  • Kathryn Kyler, grad student / Kim Smolderen, Ph.D., Assistant Professor of Biomedical and Health Informatics / Variation in medication dosing and guideline adherence by weight status for commonly prescribed medications during pediatric asthma hospitalizations
  • Ali O. Malik, grad student / Paul Chan, M.D., Professor of Internal Medicine / Association between hospital reimbursement models and rates of normal elective coronary angiograms

In Memoriam: Shui Qing Ye

Ye, Shui Qing

Remembering Shui Qing Ye
(1954-2018)

School of Medicine faculty member and renowned researcher Shui Qing Ye, M.D., Ph.D., died on Oct. 24 following a prolonged illness.

A professor in the Department of Pediatrics, and professor and chair of the Department of Biomedical and Health Informatics, Ye served as the William R. Brown / Missouri Endowed chair in Medical Genetics and Molecular Medicine. He also served as director of the Division of Experimental and Translational Genetics and Core of Omic Research at Children’s Mercy.

He is survived by wife and research collaborator, Li Qin Zhang, an associate professor at the UMKC School of Medicine, and daughter, YuMin Ye.

“Our hearts are broken,” said Mary Anne Jackson, interim dean at the UMKC School of Medicine and his colleague at Children’s Mercy. “He was a dedicated faculty member and excellent researcher, but above all that, he was one of the kindest people I have known.”

An expert in genomic and translational bioinformatics, Ye had a strong track record of using new-age tools to gather and explore Big Data. He was a highly active researcher, partnering with local and worldwide scientists to pinpoint new diagnostic biomarkers and therapeutic targets for human diseases.

“He was a fellow University of Chicago graduate, co-author, co-teacher and briefly, I had the privilege of having him as the chair of the department where I hold a courtesy appointment in the UMKC School of Medicine — I already miss him terribly,” said Gerald J. Wyckoff, interim chair of the Pharmacology and Pharmaceutical Sciences, UMKC School of Pharmacy. “He was a rare individual with a true appreciation not only for the results of science, but for the process of science. He enriched a lot of lives; mine included.”

A principal investigator or co-investigator for many National Institutes of Health-funded research studies, Ye served on grant review panels for the NIH-National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute, the U.S. Department of Defense and the American Heart Association.

He authored two highly acclaimed books on bioinformatics and Big Data:Bioinformatics — A Practical Approach, published in 2007, and “Big Data Analysis for Bioinformatics and Biomedical Discoveries,” published in 2016.

Before joining UMKC faculty in 2010, Ye served as director of the Gene Expression Profiling Core at the Center of Translational Respiratory Medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. He also served as director of the Molecular Resource Core at the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.

Ye earned his medical degree from Wuhan University School of Medicine at Wuhan City, Hubei Province, China. He completed a postdoctoral fellowship in lipid metabolism at the Oklahoma Medical Research Foundation in Oklahoma City, and received his Ph.D. in molecular mechanisms of disease from the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine.

Visitation will be from 2 to 3 p.m. and a memorial service from 3 to 4 p.m. on Saturday, Nov. 3 at Mt. Moriah, Newcomer and Freeman Funeral Home, 10507 Holmes Road, Kansas City, MO 64131.