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Faculty Commons, April 12 - 18, 2018
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Leaders in Health: Yoga on the grass is one reason the Houston Business Journal has ranked the College among the city’s Healthiest Employers for making wellness a priority for employees. The Journal also recognized 11 faculty members as Healthcare Heroes on its annual list. Outstanding Healthcare Practitioners are: Dr. Ourania Preventza, associate professor of surgery; Dr. Alex Frigini, Dr. Karla Sepulveda and Dr. Marc Willis, associate professors of radiology; and Dr. Veronica Lenge, Dr. Jay Lin and Dr. Christie Lincoln, assistant professors of radiology. Dr. Allison Haddock, assistant professor of emergency medicine, Dr. Julie Nangia, assistant professor in the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center, Dr. Amber Robinett, clinical assistant professor of pediatrics, and Dr. Christina Weng, assistant professor of ophthalmology, are honored as Rising Stars. Drs. Preventza, Lincoln, Haddock and Nangia are also faculty senators. Congratulations to our colleagues, who will be saluted at a breakfast ceremony May 17 and featured in a special section of the Journal May 18.


Academic Council: Two members of the Taub family of philanthropists have had Baylor departments named in their memory, President Paul Klotman announced at the April 9 meeting. The Henry J.N. Taub Department of Emergency Medicine and the H. Ben Taub Department of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation recognize longtime trustees who provided capable leadership to the Baylor Medical Foundation to benefit the College. Henry J.N. “Kitch” Taub II is a current Baylor trustee.

  • Dr. Klotman gave an overview of the March Board Retreat, which explored aspects of the College’s strategic plan to build on its research, clinical and educational strengths to become a learning health system. Faculty presenters discussed the database analytics, translational research and ethical guidelines that will allow Baylor to apply knowledge gained from patient data to inform population health studies and advance precision medicine. He said trustees were excited and supportive of the plan.
  • The president also introduced Melanie Jagneaux, the new ombuds, who previously served in dispute resolution and ombuds roles at Baker Hughes and Coca-Cola Enterprises.
  • Medical School Dean Jennifer Christner updated the council on graduate medical education activities at the College. Her team is conducting mock visits with affiliate hospitals in preparation for ACGME and Clinical Learning Environment Review site visits.
  • Senate Chair-Elect Laila Woc-Colburn reported that the Faculty Senate is hosting its first Lunch & Learn brownbag session on the topic of “Finance 101” at noon May 8 in Cullen Auditorium. All BCM community members are invited to hear Chief Financial Officer Julie Nickell and Dr. Klotman talk about the College’s finances and their impact on processes and planning.

Faculty Senate Elections: Nominations are rolling in for Senate seats in 22 departments and centers as well as at-large positions, ahead of the May 1 deadline. The Faculty Senate gives faculty members the opportunity to engage in shared governance and strategic planning for the College and to develop leadership skills. Information about the elections and a link to the nomination form are online.

Faculty Kudos

imageDr. Fida Bacha, associate professor of pediatrics – nutrition, was elected to membership in the American Pediatric Society, the oldest and most prestigious academic pediatric organization in North America. Members are recognized as academic leaders in pediatrics, and they continue to contribute to the overall progress of child health while inspiring the next generation of professionals.


imageDr. David Corry, professor of medicine and pathology & immunology, has been appointed vice chair of the Division of Immunology, Department of Pathology and Immunology. He will coordinate research and education in the division in addition to his roles as director of Clinical Immunology and Allergy, co-director of the Allergy and Immunology Clinical Training Program, and chief of the Section of Immunology, Allergy and Rheumatology at the Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center. Corry also will continue as executive director of the Baylor Scott & White Health - Baylor College of Medicine Research Affiliation.


imageCarl Fasser, professor in the School of Allied Health Sciences, the Department of Family and Community Medicine and the Center for Medical Ethics and Public Policy, is profiled in this month’s BCM Family. He announced that he will step down as director of the Physician Assistant Program at Baylor College of Medicine as of July 1.


imageDr. Yingbin Fu, associate professor and Sarah Campbell Blaffer Endowed Chair in ophthalmology, has been awarded the Helen Juanita Reed Award for Macular Degeneration Research 2018 from the BrightFocus Foundation. He will accept a trophy in Honolulu during the Association for Research in Vision and Ophthalmology meeting.


imageDr. Henri Justino, associate professor of pediatrics – cardiology, Dr. Kwon Soo Chun, instructor in pediatric cardiology, and their colleague Dr. Daniel Harrington of UTHealth, won first place in the American College of Cardiology Medical Devices Innovation Challenge, held last month as part of the ACC's 67th annual Scientific Session & Expo. Their innovation, a new type of heart valve for children with congenital heart disease, has resulted in a startup company, PolyVascular Corp. Their work recently was featured in the TMC Pulse.


imageDr. C. Kent Osborne, director of the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center, accepted the 2018 AACR Distinguished Award for Extraordinary Scientific Achievement and Leadership in Breast Cancer Research at the American Association for Cancer Research Annual Meeting in Chicago. His research contributions and leadership of the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium were recognized.


imageDr. Rayne Rouce, assistant professor of pediatrics – hematology/oncology and a faculty senator, has been named an Amy Strelzer Manasevit Scholar by the Be the Match Foundation. The grant program supports early-career researchers who study post-transplant complications. Rouce's research is on T cells that target the CD19 molecule to treat relapse and viral infection in high-risk B-cell malignancies after bone marrow transplant.


imageDr. Kim Worley, professor in the Human Genome Sequencing Center, is featured in this week’s Meet Your Senator article on the faculty intranet portal. She represents the HGSC faculty on the Senate.


College Events

Biomedical Research Awareness Day: Honor the role laboratory animals play in the quest for new treatments and cures at the Center for Comparative Medicine-sponsored BRAD event, 1 – 4 p.m. Monday, April 16, in Cullen Auditorium and Rayzor Hall, main Baylor. Speakers include Dr. Jeffrey Rogers, associate professor in the Human Genome Sequencing Center and faculty senator, on nonhuman primates; Dr. Corey Reynolds, director of the Mouse Metabolism & Phenotyping Core, on animal model phenotyping; Dr. William Norton of MD Anderson Cancer Center on the difference you make; and Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine, on vaccines and autism.

Compassionate Conversation: Dr. Karen Lawson, assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences, and Mikiba Morehead, Title IX coordinator, facilitate a session on sexual harassment and bystander intervention strategies at noon Tuesday, April 17, in Cullen Auditorium, main Baylor. The event, hosted by the Office of Provost and the Office of Institutional Diversity, Inclusion and Equity, continues the dialogue about the impact of awareness movements and promotes a safe and supportive learning and work environment at the College.

Evenings with Genetics: The rare respiratory condition primary ciliary dyskinesia is the topic of this month’s presentation by Dr. Laurie Robak, instructor of molecular & human genetics, and Dr. Shailendra Das, assistant professor of pediatrics – pulmonology, at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 17, at the Children’s Museum of Houston. The program is free and open to the public, but registration is required.

Alexander Lecture: Dr. Elinore McCance-Katz, Assistant Secretary of Health and Human Services for Mental Health and Substance Use, the 2018 recipient of the Joan and Stanford Alexander Annual Award in Psychiatry, presents a lecture on "Informing Federal Healthcare Policy: The Role of Psychiatry" at 10:30 a.m. Wednesday, April 18, in Cullen Auditorium, main Baylor. Complimentary to the Alexander Lecture, Baylor and the Hobby School of Public Affairs at the University of Houston host the Opioid and Substance Abuse Symposium, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m. April 18 in Cullen Auditorium. Register online.

Earth Day: Recycle your hand-held electronic devices and meet the Resource Stewardship and Sustainability team, Houston environmental organizations and Market Day vendors at the Earth Day event, 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Thursday, April 19, in the courtyard at main Baylor.

DocTalk: Obsessive compulsive disorder is Dr. Elizabeth McIngvale's topic at noon Thursday, April 19, in Cullen Auditorium, main Baylor. She is an assistant professor of psychiatry & behavioral sciences. Sign in before 12:15 p.m. to receive 100 BCM BeWell points.

NIH Training Director: Dr. Sharon Milgram, director of the Office of Intramural Training and Education, National Institutes of Health, discusses "Becoming a Resilient Scientist" at 11 a.m. Friday, April 20, in Cullen Auditorium, main Baylor, hosted by the Association for Graduate Student Diversity.

Multicultural Festival: Explore cultures and regions from around the world through food offerings, information tables, performances, artwork and other interactive activities from 12:30 to 2 p.m. Friday, April 20, in Rayzor Lounge, main Baylor.

Faculty Resources

Faculty Orientation & Promotion Reception: Learn about resources available across Baylor’s mission areas, and hear career tips and strategies from a faculty panel at New Faculty Orientation, 3:30 – 4:45 p.m. May 1 in Kleberg Auditorium, main Baylor. It is followed by a reception in Alkek Lobby to recognize new faculty members and those recently promoted to the ranks of Associate Professor and Professor. Both events are open to all faculty members. RSVP to Deborah Fernandez.

RIITE Rewards: Human Resources’ RIITE Rewards Program has been discontinued, as the College turns its focus to other initiatives to improve business operations, including the SAP-Mosaic Project. Faculty and staff with RIITE Reward point balances must redeem their points by Oct. 31. A College-wide reward and recognition program will be re-evaluated after the Human Resources portion of the Mosaic Project is complete. Log in to the RIITE Rewards website to redeem points.

For a Good Cause

Summer Research Program: The Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Equity is seeking faculty members to assist with interviewing high school students for placement in the Summer Research Program, part of the Saturday Morning Science Program. Interviews will take place from 10 a.m. to noon on April 21 on the main Baylor campus. Ideally, each interviewer will meet with no more than three students for around 20 minutes each. To volunteer or for more information, please contact Laura Perry Olilo, 713-798-8646.

Attention Clinicians: See Clinical Calendar

Clinical Event

INSTINCT ThinkTank: Join a discussion sponsored by the Interdisciplinary Surgical Technology and Innovation Center on innovative and game-changing ideas about artificial intelligence and its potential and current use in medicine and healthcare at 3 p.m. Thursday, April 19, in Room 187A (Jaworski Classroom), main Baylor.

Clinical Symposia

Psychosis Conference: The inaugural Psychosis Conference, sponsored by the College and the Schizophrenia and Related Disorders Alliance of America, is April 20 at Onstead Auditorium, 6767 Bertner Ave. Open to clinicians, patients and families, the conference focuses on the role of cognitive impairments in psychosis and the importance of developing effective treatments. CME credit is available. Register online.

Policy Prescriptions: The 5th Annual Policy Prescriptions Symposium, directed by Dr. Cedric Dark, assistant professor of emergency medicine, is scheduled for April 20 at Baylor St. Luke's Medical Center McNair Campus. It provides communities and clinicians with timely and insightful evidence-based analysis designed to shape policy governing healthcare. Online registration is open now.

Attention Researchers: See Research Calendar

Research Seminars

Bench-to-Bedside Seminar: Dr. Roberto Civitelli of Washington University School of Medicine speaks on “Connexins in the Skeleton and Beyond” at noon tomorrow, April 13, in Cullen Auditorium, main Baylor.

CVRI Seminar: “Novel targets to prevent microvascular thrombosis in sepsis” is the topic of Dr. Miguel Cruz’s talk at noon Wednesday, April 18, in Room 201A, main Baylor. Cruz is an associate professor of medicine – thrombosis at the College.

Research Resources

Research Mentor Training: Space is still available in a workshop for research faculty on skill-building in mentoring competencies including aligning expectations, maintaining effective communications, fostering independence and resilience and promoting professional development. Workshop activities are based on the mentor training curriculum of the NIH’s National Research Mentoring Network (NRMN) but will be tailored to research mentors at Baylor. Four workshop dates in May and June are offered. To attend, please choose your preferred date by Monday, April 16. For more information, contact Dr. Anna Marie Sokac, NRMN master facilitator of mentor training, or Dr. Sandra Haudek, director of peer coaching in the Office of Faculty Development.

Early Independence Awards: Baylor may submit two applications for the NIH Director’s Early Independence Award Program, which supports exceptional investigators who wish to pursue independent research directly after completion of their terminal doctoral/research degree or clinical residency, thereby forgoing the traditional post-doctoral training period and accelerating their entry into an independent research career. Internal submissions are due by 5 p.m. May 7 through the online portal.

From the Labs: Read how Dr. Christian Marin-Muller, an alumnus of the Graduate School of Biomedical Sciences, and his biotechnology startup worked with Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center faculty and Baylor Licensing Group to develop a new therapeutic in this blog post. You can receive weekly articles on Baylor's research and innovation highlights as they are posted by going to From the Labs and entering your email address in the "Subscribe" box on the right. Or get a digest at the end of the month with links to the articles posted that month by emailing science writer Ana Rodríguez with "Subscribe me to From the Labs" in the subject line.

Funding Opportunities: See the Office of Institutional Diversity, Inclusion and Equity’s list of funding opportunities for research on healthcare disparities and social determinants of health. The Office of Research offers a list of privately funded awards currently accepting applications for April.

Questions or Comments?

Faculty Senate: Please contact your Senator for faculty-related questions or suggestions.

Institutional Policy Committee: Contact the Policy Committee to learn more about College policies and procedures.

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