UofL associate dean selected for executive leadership program in medical education

Amy Holthouser, MD, UofL’s associate dean for medical education and an associate professor of medicine and pediatrics, has been selected as a member of the 2016-2017 class of the Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine Program (ELAM). Holthouser is one of only 54 women in the nation selected for the program.

ELAM is a year-long fellowship for women faculty in schools of medicine, dentistry and public health in which they develop professional and personal skills required for leadership and management in health care. More than 900 ELAM alumnae hold leadership positions in institutions around the world.

Holthouser oversees the design and implementation of the MD program curriculum. She also leads the steering committee for the eQuality Project at UofL, a national pilot initiative to integrate competencies published by the Association of American Medical Colleges related to provision of care for LGBT and DSD individuals into the school of medicine curriculum. Holthouser was a primary investigator on a Robert Wood Johnson Foundation grant to develop a required palliative care educational experience for medical students, and co-investigator on iCOPE, a five-year NIH grant funding the development of an interdisciplinary palliative care curriculum to improve the care of cancer patients.

Among her 24 teaching awards at the university and school of medicine level, Holthouser has received the American College of Physicians Outstanding Faculty Award and twice won the American Medical Women’s Association Gender Equity Award. The Louisville native is an alumna of the UofL School of Medicine where she also completed her residency training in internal medicine and pediatrics. In addition to her academic duties, Holthouser practices as a pediatric hospitalist at Kosair Children’s Hospital.

In ELAM’s 21-year history, 17 faculty members from UofL have completed the fellowship. Toni Ganzel, MD, MBA, dean of the UofL School of Medicine, is among UofL’s ELAM alumnae, and Diane Harper, MD, MPH, MS, chair of the Department of Family and Geriatric Medicine, was part of the 2015-2016 class. A complete list of UofL’s ELAM alumnae is included below.

The Hedwig van Ameringen Executive Leadership in Academic Medicine (ELAM) Program
University of Louisville Alumnae*

Lourdes C. Corman, M.D. (1996-1997)
Professor and Vice Chair of Medicine
Chief, Division of Medical Education
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Laura F. Schweitzer, PhD (1998-1999)
Professor, Department of Anatomical Sciences and Neurobiology
Associate Dean of Faculty Affairs
Associate Dean of Student Affairs
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Linda F. Lucas, MD (1999-2000)
Associate Professor of Anesthesiology
University of Louisville School of Medicine
Director, One Day Surgery
University of Louisville Hospital

Barbara J. McLaughlin, PhD (2000-2001)
Professor of Ophthalmology
Associate Dean for Research
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Connie L. Drisko, DDS (2001-2002)
Professor of Periodontics
Assistant Dean for Research
University of Louisville School of Dentistry

Susan Galandiuk, MD (2001-2002)
Associate Professor of Surgery
Program Director, Section of Colon and Rectal Surgery
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Mary Thoesen Coleman, MD, PhD (2002-2003)
Associate Professor of Family and Community Medicine
Vice Chair for Clinical Affairs, Department of Family and Community Medicine
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Toni M. Ganzel, MD, MBA (2003-2004)
Professor of Surgery, Division of Otolaryngology,
Department of Surgery
Senior Associate Dean for Students and Academic Affairs
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Faye Jones, MD, PhD, MSPH (2007-2008)
Professor of Pediatrics
Associate Dean of Minority and Rural Affairs
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Kathy B. Baumgartner, PhD (2008-2009)
Associate Professor of Epidemiology and Population Health
University of Louisville School of Public Health and Information Sciences

Melanie R. Peterson, DMD, MBA (2008-2009)
Professor of Dentistry
Associate Dean for Clinics and Postdoctoral Education
University of Louisville School of Dentistry

Anees B. Chagpar, MD, MSc, MPH (2009-2010)
Academic Advisory Dean, School of Medicine
Director, Multidisciplinary Breast Program
Associate Professor of Surgery
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Jill Suttles, PhD (2010-2011)
Graduate Program Director, Department of Microbiology and Immunology
Professor of Microbiology and Immunology
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Kelli Bullard Dunn, MD (2012-2013)
Professor of Surgery
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Sharmila Makhija, MD, MBA (2012-2013)
Chair, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Women’s Health
Donald E. Baxter Endowed Chair in Obstetrics and Gynecology
Professor of Gynecologic Oncology
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Ann Shaw, MD (2013-2014)
Associate Dean for Medical Education
Academic Advisory Dean
Professor of Medicine
University of Louisville School of Medicine

Diane Harper, MD, MPH, MS (2015-2016)
Chair, Department of Family and Geriatric Medicine
Rowntree Endowed Chair in Family and Geriatric Medicine
University of Louisville School of Medicine

*Titles reflect the alumna’s position at the time of their acceptance into the ELAM fellowship

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Top brain cancer specialists to speak in Louisville on primary gliomas

Some of North America’s most respected physician researchers in neuro-oncology will share their expertise in the treatment of primary glioma at the second annual James Graham Brown Cancer Center Neuro-oncology Symposium on July 8 at the University of Louisville.

“Management of Primary Glioma in Adults,” co-hosted by the UofL Department of Neurology and the James Graham Brown Cancer Center, a part of KentuckyOne Health, will be Friday, July 8 from 7:15 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Kosair Charities Clinical and Translational Research Building, 505 S. Hancock St. on the University of Louisville Health Sciences Campus. The event is open to patients and their families, as well as physicians and health care professionals.

Eric Burton, M.D.
Eric Burton, MD

Conference director Eric Burton, MD, assistant professor in the UofL Department of Neurology and director of neuro-oncology at JGBCC, will provide an overview of adult glioma, a tumor that develops in the supportive tissue of the brain. Presenters from MD Anderson Cancer Center, University of California, San Francisco, Toronto General Hospital and the University of Louisville will then address best current practices and future treatment directions for patients with primary gliomas using surgery, radiation and chemotherapy, as well as a discussion of molecular markers in adult glioma.

“These are some of the most influential and highly respected physician researchers in neuro-oncology and neuropathology,” Burton said. “This is an excellent opportunity for physicians across the region, as well as patients and their families, to learn about the latest developments in the pathology and treatment of brain tumors.”

In addition to Burton, presenters include:

Kenneth Aldape, MD, senior scientist and director of MacFeeters-Hamilton Brain Tumor Centre at Toronto General Hospital and professor in the Department of Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology at the University of Toronto. Aldape is a neuropathologist with a research interest in primary brain tumors. His work includes the identification of biomarkers in gliomas, characterizing glioma subtypes and identifying clinically relevant molecular alterations in these tumors. In 2014, Aldape received the Guha Award for Excellence in Neuro-Oncology Research from the Society for Neuro-Oncology.

Michael Prados, MD, Charles B Wilson Chair in Neurosurgery and professor emeritus at the University of California San Francisco. Prados led the North America Brain Tumor Consortium for 15 years and was co-project leader of the Adult Brain Tumor Consortium until 2014. He formed and is co-project leader of the Pacific Pediatric Neuro-Oncology Consortium, a consortium of 15 major academic centers across the U.S., and is co-project leader of a pediatric brain tumor SPORE project at UCSF. Prados has been NIH/NCI funded continuously since 1994 and is a member of the NCI/CTEP Brain Malignancies Steering Committee. In 2014, he was awarded the Victor Levin Award for lifetime clinical research excellence from the Society of Neuro-Oncology.

Raymond Sawaya, MD, chair and professor of the Department of Neurosurgery at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. He is director of the Brain Tumor Center at MD Anderson and served as professor and chair of the Department of Neurosurgery at Baylor College of Medicine from 2005-2014. His awards include the Joseph P. Evans Award in Neurosurgery at the University of Cincinnati and the Charles Wilson Award from the National Brain Tumor Society. He is past chairman of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons/Congress of Neurological Surgeons Section on Tumors. Sawaya has particular expertise in primary and metastatic brain tumors and is renowned for his strides in enhancing the accessibility and safety of brain tumor surgery.

Shiao Woo, MD, chair and professor in the UofL Department of Radiation Oncology, professor in the UofL Department of Pediatrics and the Kosair Children’s Hospital/Norton Healthcare Chair in Pediatric Oncology. His clinical focus and research is on brain and spine tumors, pediatric cancer and lung cancer. Woo has received Clinical Fellowship Awards from the American Cancer Society, Teacher of the Year Award from the Association of Residents in Radiation Oncology and the Patient Golden Apple Award from the MD Anderson Cancer Center. He also served as president of the MD Anderson Radiation Oncology Gilbert H. Fletcher Society.

Continuing education credit is available for health care providers. The event is free for UofL-affiliated providers, $15 for nurses and $20 for all others. For additional information, visit the conference website or contact Emily Rollins at emily.rollins@louisvilleneuroscience.com.

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McConnell Center celebrates quarter century with ‘25 for 25’

Throughout the last 25 years, the McConnell Center has grown by leaps and bounds. Founded in 1991, the non-partisan center identifies, recruits, and nurtures Kentucky’s next generation of great leaders.

“McConnell Center graduates are thriving in every field, directly benefiting Kentucky and the country, and are putting the University of Louisville on the map,” U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell said. “What began in 1991 as a simple scholarship program for kids has grown into one of the most acclaimed programs in the nation and I couldn’t be prouder.”

As the center celebrates its silver anniversary, it has launched the yearlong “25 Faces” awareness campaign that highlights the faculty, friends and McConnell Scholar alumni responsible for its growth and success.

“It’s not our location but our people that make the McConnell Center so special,” center director Gary Gregg said. “The McConnell Scholars, our teachers, staff and faculty partners make the McConnell Center the most diverse, dynamic, and stimulating atmosphere I know of, where big ideas are debated and outstanding young people mentored.”

Throughout the last quarter century, the center has awarded more than $3.5 million in scholarships and produced more than 200 alumni – including 12 Fulbright and three Truman Scholars – in a variety of fields, including engineering, medicine and, of course, politics. 2014 graduate Meghan Waters is one of the youngest communications directors working in the U.S. Congress and says the experience of being a McConnell Scholar changed the course of her life and career.

From left to right:  Meghan Waters, Communications Director to Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-OH); Justin Tooley, Legislative Assistant for Rep. Jim Cooper (D-TN); Shannon Rickett: Legislative Assistant to Rep. Hal Rogers (R-KY); Daniel Cameron: Legal Counsel to U.S. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
From left to right:
Meghan Waters, Communications Director to Rep. Brad Wenstrup (R-OH); Justin Tooley, Legislative Assistant for Rep. Jim Cooper (D-TN); Shannon Rickett: Legislative Assistant to Rep. Hal Rogers (R-KY); Daniel Cameron, Legal Counsel to Senator Mitch McConnell (R-KY).

“My experience as a McConnell Scholar had a huge impact on me because of the people I met and the exposure to a broad range of ideas that challenged my convictions and made me look at issues from a different point of view,” Waters said. “The program is built to help the next generation of leaders meet new people, encounter new ideas and take their skill set to the next level.”

While the center may have McConnell as its namesake, it prides itself on being focused on civic and public service, not politics. Dr. Jonathan Ballard, MD, the ambulatory director of the state’s largest primary care practice, is a prime example.

After finishing with undergraduate and medical degrees from UofL, Ballard undertook his residency program at Dartmouth, where he specialized in preventative and family medicine. Simultaneously, he earned his master’s degree in public health in an effort to find ways to improve the health care system, especially in Kentucky.

Jonathan Ballard, M.D.
Jonathan Ballard, MD.

“Kentucky is ranked near the bottom – no matter how you look at it – in a lot of positive health outcomes in the U.S., whether it’s smoking or stroke or diabetes,” Ballard said. “The medical community in our state needs leadership and that’s what the McConnell Center helped instill in me. The lessons I learned there help me as I interact with a large group of diverse people across the state as we try and improve health of all Kentuckians.”

From May 31 through June 29, the center will host the U.S. Army’s third annual Strategic Broadening Seminar, designed to provide analytical and leadership skills to the next generation of army leaders. Programming for the 25th Anniversary returns in the fall, including the center’s signature Distinguished Speaker Series and the McConnell Scholar alumni homecoming reunion scheduled for Oct. 22.

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Bound by basketball: employees celebrate 52 years of play in Crawford Gym

The Noontime Basketball Association gathered recently to pay homage to the 52 years they’ve played together and the beloved building that made their countless games possible.

As is typical of the motley group of UofL faculty and staff, it was more in the spirit of fun than formality.

After all, since its inception in 1964, the NBA, as the group laughingly calls itself, has never been an actual league. They’ve never collected dues, elected leaders or had any of the trappings of a formal organization.

They’ve just had an open door policy — any university employee who wants to play basketball can show up at lunchtime on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays in Crawford Gym.

“One of the great things about these games is there is no distinctions, as long as you get a UofL pay check, you’re welcome. We’ve had everyone from janitors to vice presidents,” said Steve Skaggs, professor of graphic design, who acts as the group’s impromptu leader. “You get everyone in their underwear and everyone looks alike. Status falls away.”

Over the years, players have come and gone, some have gotten a little grayer, softer and more prone to injury.

But one thing remained the same, they always played in Crawford Gym, which was also the varsity basketball team’s practice facility for decades. The facility was hot — it never had air-conditioning — but the court was good and long and the floors had great bounce, they say.

Crawford NBA_2760

The tradition will end this summer when the gym is torn down to make way for a new academic building.

The NBA held a decommissioning ceremony to mark the occasion, in which they reminisced and read a proclamation.

 “We hereby celebrate the fellowship, the layup, the blocked shots, the fights, the injuries and the laughter this facility made possible,” Skaggs said.

The group also will hand over their only documents to University Libraries Archives and Special Collections, which includes a roster of about 120 players (that’s everyone they can remember) — and the “Monroe Doctrine,” as their rules are called, so named for biology professor Burt Monroe who penned them years ago.

“It’s a tattered sheet of paper we always kept in a locker just in case there was a dispute, but there never was,” Skaggs said.

He can remember only one change to it: In the 1980s, 3-point and 2-point shots were added. Before that, there had only been 1-point baskets.

Players describe their games as competitive and physical, even as skill and talent vary. For example, physical plant worker Adam Walter Davis, or “Ice,” as the group calls him, played on his junior college’s basketball team, and can really shoot.

But, he was quick to share the ball “to get everyone involved,” even if that was to team members who weren’t as quick to the basket as he was, “like my man right here,” he said with a laugh, clapping Guruprasad Giridharan on the back.

Giridharan, associate chair of bioengineering, didn’t know how to play basketball when he started with the NBA in 2003. He’d newly moved to Louisville and came out to get some exercise. While his shot hasn’t improved a lot, he’s made lots of friends; the kind you can have a bourbon with after work, he said.

Crawford NBA_2793

The NBA has brought together people who otherwise wouldn’t have had the chance to meet, and even resulted in occasional collaborations, said Skaggs, who once worked with bioengineering professor and fellow player Steven Koenig to write a grant.

“Basketball has a way of bringing people together,” Skaggs said.

Like any community, they’ve experienced losses through the years, as regulars have gotten sick or passed away. Former Western Kentucky player Granville Bunton, who worked in UofL’s libraries, died in 1996 after having a heart attack following a game at Crawford. A plaque honoring Granville signed by “his noontime basketball friends” is on display in the gym lobby.

“Part of it is a brotherhood,” Koenig said.

Occasionally, women have also played. Skaggs remembers guarding Patty Jo Hedges Ward, who played at the University of Kentucky from 1979-83. She was named to the 1982 SEC All-Tournament team after helping the Cats win their first SEC Tournament championship. She also was a member of the Pan American Gold Medal team in 1983.

“She was crafty with the ball to say the least,” Skaggs said.

And, there have been serendipitous moments, too. 

Scott Davenport, Bellarmine University’s basketball coach whose team clinched the 2011 NCAA Division II national championship, was once a freshman at UofL, just hanging out in Crawford Gym, watching the NBA play.  

Someone left and they needed another player. They asked Davenport to join. He did, and he played well. He was so good that former athletic director Bill Olsen, who was present at the time, noticed and invited him to try out for the junior varsity team. Davenport did, and his storied career in basketball was born.

The NBA plans to play through the summer. Following Crawford’s removal, they’ll move to another gym on campus.

Click here to view more photos. Watch a story about the NBA below. 

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School yard becomes latest urban laboratory in Louisville

A local school has joined a landmark health research project headed by the University of Louisville designed to use nature to tackle the health impact of busy city streets.

St. Margaret Mary School, 7813 Shelbyville Road, is the new site of an experiment designed to use trees and shrubs to create a living filter for roadway air pollution. The project will be a model for metro-wide “greening” projects that use our environment to improve health.

The Louisville Green for Good project is a collaboration among the Diabetes and Obesity Center at the University of Louisville, The Institute for Healthy Air Water and Soil and the City of Louisville’s Office of Sustainability.

The current levels of air pollution at the school will be measured and then half of the school’s front yard will be filled with a green buffer of shrubs, deciduous trees and pines. Then the team will measure air pollution levels a second time. The goal is to test the idea that a greener neighborhood is a healthier neighborhood.

“This project has the potential to improve the health of nearby students and residents for years to come by improving local air quality,” said Aruni Bhatnagar, PhD, the Smith and Lucille Gibson Chair in Medicine and director of the University of Louisville Diabetes and Obesity Center. “St. Margaret Mary was chosen due to its location which is close to a high traffic roadway. The school also includes a spacious lawn that allows for the addition of foliage, which will act as an air-cleansing barrier between the school and the street.”

Mayor Greg Fischer said, “I am committed to helping Louisville become a greener and healthier place to live – and, I’m a data guy. So I’m excited that this project will provide the data we need to move forward on our sustainability goals for the city.”

St. Margaret Mary Principal Wendy Sims said she is excited about this project for the parish, school and community. 

“In his encyclical letter ‘Laudato Si’,’ Our Holy Father Pope Francis reminds us that ‘we must regain the conviction that we need one another, that we have a shared responsibility for others and for the world, and that being good and decent are worth it … social love moves us to devise larger strategies to halt environmental degradation and to encourage a “culture of care” which permeates all of society’,” Sims said. “This project is a wonderful lesson for our students, faculty, and parents about how to foster such a culture of care, now and for future generations.”

Air monitoring will start this summer. The trees and shrubs will arrive in October with a second round of air monitoring taking place later this year. Students will participate in the monitoring work.

In addition to tracking certain pollutants, the project team will collect data on traffic and weather.

The project includes ecology experts from around the country with deep understanding of air pollution and the power of plants.

Funding comes from the Funders’ Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities.

The research effort is a project of the Funders’ Network for Smart Growth and Livable Communities. The grant was matched with $50,000 from the Owsley Brown Charitable Foundation and $25,000 from an anonymous donor in Louisville. The Institute for Healthy Air, Water, and Soil received the funds and will be managing the project.


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