Dr. Vikas Majithia

Vikas Majithia, MD, MPH, Professor of Medicine and Division Director of Rheumatology, will be leaving UMMC next month for a new position as Rheumatology Division Chair at Mayo Clinic – Jacksonville. During his 20 years at UMMC, Majithia held several roles for the Department of Medicine, including Division and Fellowship Program Director for Rheumatology, and Vice Chair for Faculty Development, and Chair of Promotion and Tenure Committee. He has received many honors and accolades for his teaching and service including induction into Norman C. Nelson Order of Teaching Excellence, AOA Faculty of the Year, and the Department of Medicine Mentor Award. We appreciate Dr. Majithia’s service to UMMC and wish him well in his future endeavors. In light of his leaving, the following appointments have been made in the Department:

Gailen Marshall to serve as interim Division Director of Rheumatology

Dr. Gailen Marshall

Gailen Marshall, Jr. MD, PhD, FACP has been named interim Division Director of Rheumatology. Marshall is the R. Faser Triplett Sr. MD Chair of Allergy and Immunology, Executive Director of the Mississippi Clinical Research and Trials Center, Professor of Medicine, Pediatrics, Pathology and Population Health, Vice Chair for Research, and Division Director of Allergy, Asthma, and Clinical Immunology. He received both his PhD in Immunology and medical degree from the University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston, began internal medicine training at the University of Iowa, and completed his residency, chief residency and Allergy-Immunology fellowship at the University of Tennessee at Memphis.

Marshall’s clinical interests include developing integrative approaches for the care of patients with immune and inflammatory diseases such as asthma and other allergic conditions, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and diabetes. His major research interests are focused on the effects of adverse interactions between psychological stress and environmental factors on immune responses involved in inflammatory diseases and defining immune and genetic biomarkers with potential to identify individual stress susceptibility in healthy individuals and patients.

Jimmy Stewart appointed Vice Chair of Faculty Development for the Department of Medicine

Dr. Jimmy Stewart

Jimmy Stewart, MD, has been appointed Vice Chair of Faculty Development for the Department of Medicine. Stewart, Professor of Medicine and Pediatrics, also serves as the Associate Dean of Graduate Medical Education. He attended medical school, medicine-pediatrics residency, and chief residency in Pediatrics at UMMC. He served as the Director of the second-year medical school course, Introduction to Clinical Medicine and as the Program Director for the Medicine-Pediatrics Residency Program for many years before stepping into his role as Associate Dean of Graduate Medical Education.

Stewart has received many honors and accolades for his teaching and service including the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award, Clinical Professor of the Year, Pre-Clinical Professor of the Year, and Carl G. Evers Society Hall of Fame. He practices general medicine and pediatrics and is certified as a hypertension specialist. He also serves as a regular host of The Original Southern Remedy, Mississippi Public Broadcasting’s flagship wellness program dedicated to keeping Mississippians healthy. Stewart serves on the USMLE Interdisciplinary Review Committee and is the Co-Investigator of an American Medical Association (AMA) grant entitled The GOL2D Project (Goals of Life and Learning Delineated): Collaboration Across Academic Health Systems to Better Align GME with Learner, Patient, and Societal Needs, in partnership with Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

John Spurzem named Chair of the Department of Medicine Promotion and Tenure Committee

Dr. John Spurzem

John Spurzem, MD, MSPH, Professor in the Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine, has been named Chair of the Department of Medicine Promotion and Tenure Committee. Spurzem served as Division Director of Pulmonary, Critical Care, and Sleep Medicine for 11 years until 2021. He is the current Director of the Adult Cystic Fibrosis Center. His research includes several clinical trials funded by both industry and the National Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Together with Joseph Majure, MD, a pediatric pulmonary specialist at UMMC, Spurzem received the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation’s 2020 Quality Care Award in recognition of “outstanding QI processes and accomplishments.”

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