Appointments and awards
David Cochran, D.D.S., M.S., Ph.D., professor and chairman of the Department of Periodontics, has been elected President-elect of the Academy of Osseointegration. He is a member of the 2012 Program Committee and co-chaired the academy’s 2006 State of the Science on Implant Dentistry Workshop, served on the academy’s board as treasurer and director, and was program chair for the 2001 annual meeting in Toronto, Canada. Dr. Cochran, past president of the American Academy of Periodontology, is also an affiliate professor of biochemistry at the Medical College of Virginia, Richmond, and was awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Bern in Switzerland for his contributions to implant dentistry.
Miguel C. Fernández, M.D., professor of surgery and director of the South Texas Poison Center, was appointed by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to the National Toxicology Program Board of Scientific Counselors. This 15-member board controls toxicology testing across the U.S. and informs the public about potentially toxic chemicals. Dr. Fernández is board certified in emergency medicine and medical toxicology, and is a fellow of the American College of Medical Toxicology and the American College of Emergency Physicians. His research interests include snakebites, poisonings, environmental health, international health and health care disparities.
Paul Fitzpatrick, Ph.D., professor of biochemistry, was named a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Election as a fellow is an honor bestowed upon AAAS members by their peers. Dr. Fitzpatrick was elected as an AAAS fellow in the Section on Chemistry for his outstanding contributions and critical insights into the mechanisms of the aromatic amino acid hydroxylases, including oxygen activation and reaction intermediates, and for his many years of service as chair of review panels for the National Institutes of Health and other agencies.
Julie C. Novak, D.N.Sc., RN, associate dean for practice and engagement in the School of Nursing, was presented the prestigious Henry K. Silver Memorial Award from the National Association of Pediatric Nurse Practitioners. During her 34-year career, Dr. Novak has developed nurse-managed clinics, educated hundreds of pediatric nurse practitioners, initiated a Doctor of Nursing Practice degree and led nursing students on international service-learning projects. At the Health Science Center, she revamped the Student Health Center, doubling the number of exam rooms and number of patients seen, and launched the Employee Health and Wellness Clinic.
Norma Martinez Rogers, Ph.D., RN, clinical professor in the Department of Family and Community Health Systems, has been selected by the National Diversity Council as a 2011 “Most Powerful and Influential Woman of Texas.” She was one of 20 distinguished women leaders throughout the state to be selected. In 2000, Dr. Rogers began a mentoring program called Juntos Podemos (Together We Can) with 20 students and a $5,000 grant from the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board. In 10 years, the program has served nearly 2,400 students, including more than 200 each semester. In fall 2010 she received a $900,000 grant from the U.S. Health Resources and Services Administration to expand the program and received a $500,000 grant through the Congressional Hispanic Caucus to initiate a mentorship program in three states based on Juntos Podemos.
Three join UT System Academy of Health Science Education
Linda M. McManus, Ph.D., professor of pathology, Charleen M. Moore, Ph.D.,professor of cellular and structural biology, and Omid B. Rahimi, Ph.D., assistant professor of cellular and structural biology and director of the Human Anatomy Program at the UT Health Science Center, were among 12 inductees from the six UT System health science center institutions elected to the UT SystemAcademy of Health Science Education. The academy, a formal organization of distinguished scholars recognized for their teaching excellence, is committed to the enhancement of health science education. Twenty UT Health Science Center San Antonio faculty members have been elected to the academy since it was established in 2005.
Six receive awards from AACR
The American Association for Cancer Research (AACR) presented AACR Minority-Serving Institution Faculty Scholar in Cancer Research Awards to Ibtissam Echchgadda, Ph.D., instructor of molecular medicine, Addanki Pratap Kumar, Ph.D., associate professor of urology, Pothana Saikumar, Ph.D., associate professor of pathology, Chung-Seog Song, Ph.D., assistant professor/research of molecular medicine, and Ratna Vadlamudi, Ph.D., professor of obstetrics and gynecology. The five faculty honorees are studying the initiation and progression of prostate, breast and pancreatic cancers. Valerie Cortez, a Ph.D. student in cellular and structural biology, is one of 50 students nationwide selected for the AACR Minority Scholar in Cancer Research Award. The AACR awards are sponsored by a grant from the National Cancer Institute’s Center to Reduce Cancer Health Disparities.