News Reports: Top Stories

Dr. Randi Smith

Randi Smith appointed Vice Chair of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for the Department of Surgery

January 2022

Randi N. Smith, MD, MPH, has been appointed the inaugural Vice Chair of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion for the Department of Surgery. In this role, Dr. Smith will provide vision and leadership as the department enacts a national model for advancing multiplicity, egalitarianism, and a welcoming culture in the field of surgery. Her special interests include violence prevention, global surgery, and clinical outcomes with a focus on understanding the social determinants of health that lead to trauma and health disparities.


Jessica Keilson and Caroline Medin

Jessica Keilson and Caroline Medin receive 2022 ASCO Merit Awards

December 2021

Emory general surgery residents Jessica Keilson, MD, and Caroline Medin, MD, received Conquer Cancer Merit Awards from the Conquer Cancer Foundation of the American Society of Clinical Oncology for the 2022 Gastrointestinal Cancers Symposium in San Francisco in January 2022. Merit Awards are distributed to residents and fellows whose research is addressed in high-quality abstracts that exhibit cogent science, and recipients are honored with the opportunity to present their abstracts at the annual symposium.


Dr. Rachel Patzer

Rachel Patzer co-leads Atlanta-based sites of nationwide effort to study long COVID-19

November 2021

Rachel Patzer, PhD, MPH, is one of three PIs leading the Atlanta hub for a nationwide study to identify why some people have prolonged symptoms (long COVID) or develop new or returning symptoms after an acute bout of SARS-CoV-2 infection. Emory, Morehouse School of Medicine, the Atlanta VA Healthcare System, and Kaiser Permanente of Georgia are projected to receive close to $20 million over four years from the NIH to be part of a comprehensive initiative called Researching COVID to Enhance Recovery (RECOVER).


Chrystal Paulos, PhD

Chrystal Paulos: Top researcher honor affirmed by V Foundation grant

October 2021

The naming of Chrystal Paulos, PhD, director of translational research for cutaneous malignancies at Winship Cancer Institute, as an honoree for Emory Researcher Appreciation Day has been underscored by her receipt of the V Foundation for Cancer Research 2021 Translational Award. The three-year, $600,000 award supports bench to bedside research that hopes to lead to a future clinical trial. Dr. Paulos and her team will be studying the rejuvenation of T cells for treating patients with advanced melanoma.


Dr. Chris Larsen

Christian Larsen receives AMA's Scientific Achievement Award

October 2021

Christian P. Larsen, MD, DPhil, was presented with the American Medical Association's 2021 Scientific Achievement Award for his pioneering work that reshaped the field of transplantation. This award is presented by the AMA to individuals in recognition of an outstanding career that has fostered scientific discovery into improved clinical care. Dr. Larsen's profound contributions to transplant immunology turned novel scientific discovery into treatment that is used as the standard of care to prevent rejection in human transplantation.


Dr. Olamide Alabi

Uncovering why many veterans with PAD in the South experience amputations

September 2021

The overlapping populations of Americans with peripheral artery disease (PAD) that commonly experience worse outcomes include veterans, African Americans, and people who live in underserved and/or disadvantaged communities. With the support of a Veterans Administration DEI Research Supplement award, Olamide Alabi, MD, aims to focus on the South in examining access to care among veterans with PAD, investigating care variations that lead to potentially preventable lower extremity amputation, and devising solutions to improve the quality of care provided to these veterans.


Manu Sancheti and Onkar Khullar

Onkhar Khullar and Manu Sancheti perform Georgia's first robotic-assisted tracheobronchoplasty

September 2021

Manu S. Sancheti, MD, and Onkar V. Khullar, MD, have successfully performed Georgia's first robotic-assisted tracheobronchoplasty to treat tracheobronchomalacia (TBM) at Emory University Hospital Midtown. The patient has returned home and is doing well. Robotic-assisted tracheobronchoplasty allows surgeons to repair the soft and weakened airway walls of the windpipe with precise control of tiny instruments on four thin robotic arms, resulting in smaller incisions, less pain, and quicker recovery.


Keneeshia Williams' drive to educate: TEDx presenter, ACS CASEL program

August 2021

Keneeshia N. Williams, MD, trauma and acute care general surgeon and chief quality officer for the Emory Department of Surgery at Grady Memorial Hospital, was a featured speaker at the virtual event "Humanity: The Repatriation," sponsored by TEDxWrigleyville, the Chicago-based production-affiliate of TED (Technology, Entertainment and Design). Dr. Williams' talk was delivered from Chicago's Wrigley Field, and applied her life experience and medical expertise to offering nonideological, proven solutions to gun violence in America. Dr. Williams has also been accepted into the Certificate in Applied Surgical Education Leadership (CASEL) program of the American College of Surgeons.