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Councilors

Lydia A. Bazzano, MD, PhD

Lydia A. Bazzano, MD, PhD

Tulane University Health Sciences Center
School of Public Health & Tropical Medicine

Department of Epidemiology
1440 Canal Street, Suite 2032, SL-18
New Orleans, LA 70112

Phone: 504-988-7323
Fax: 504-988-1568
lbazzano@tulane.edu

Term of Office: 2022

About Dr. Bazzano

Dr. Bazzano is an Associate Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at Tulane University's School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, and is Director of Tulane's Center for Lifespan Epidemiology Research. She received a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from Newcomb College. She earned an MPH and a PhD in epidemiology and an MD from Tulane University. She was awarded the American Medical Women's Association Janet M. Glasgow Memorial Achievement Citation, and was admitted to the Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society. She is board certified in internal medicine, for which she did her internship and residency at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Harvard Medical School.

Dr. Bazzano has a research focus on cardiovascular disease and its risk factors. Her primary emphasis has been on the role of cardio-metabolic factors such as obesity, lipids and glucose in the development of vascular disease. She has led a number of NIH-funded research projects that explore the role of diet in hypertension, obesity, and other metabolic risk factors that lead to chronic disease, producing more than 100 peer-reviewed publications as first author or co-author. She was awarded the Lynda B and H. Leighton Steward Professorship in Nutrition Research in 2014. Her analysis of the relationship between fruit and vegetable consumption and cardiovascular disease has been cited more than 700 times, and her 2014 clinical trial on macronutrient composition of diets and risk of heart disease garnered attention from major media outlets including the New York Times, Time magazine, and National Public Radio.

She has been consistently involved in SSCI activities over the past 10 years. Dr. Bazzano presented a State-of-the-Art Lecture entitled "Folic Acid Supplementation and Cardiovascular Disease" during the cardiovascular session of the annual scientific meeting of the SSCI in 2009. She has moderated sessions at the Southern Regional Meetings, and published articles in the American Journal of the Medical Sciences, and presented in both oral and poster sessions at SSCI meetings. She has experience mentoring PhD, post-doctoral trainees and junior faculty who have won awards from the SSCI.


Leslie Gewin, MD

Leslie Gewin, MD

Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Division of Nephrology
1161 21st Avenue South, S3223 MCN
Nashville, TN 37232-2372

Phone: 615-343-0767
l.gewin@vumc.org

Term of office: 2024

About Dr. Gewin

Leslie Gewin, MD, is a physician-scientist in the Division of Nephrology at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) and a Staff Physician at the Nashville VA. Her research interest focuses on understanding the mechanisms underlying chronic kidney disease progression. She runs a basic science lab funded by both the NIH and the VA that studies how epithelial responses to injury lead to renal repair or fibrosis and the role of growth factors in these epithelial responses. She also attends on the general internal medicine wards and the nephrology consult service at the Nashville VA.

Dr. Gewin is passionate about teaching and supporting the next generation of physician-scientists. She is Co-director of the Kidney Student Research Training Program, which places medical students in a lab for a mentored research experience during the summer between first and second years. To advocate for the careers of women investigators, Dr. Gewin has been involved as Chair of the Steering Committee of Vanderbilt's Women on Track, an organization that promotes the advancement of tenure-track women through a seminar series addressing obstacles in academic medicine. She also serves as a Councilor on Women in Nephrology, an international group that provides mentorship and professional development to both men and women in nephrology. Dr. Gewin has been involved with SSCI as an abstract reviewer, and she has both presented her research and moderated sessions at the Southern Regional Meetings. She has published in the American Journal of the Medical Sciences and serves as a judge for the SSCI's Nephrology Young Investigators' Forum.


Sarah C. Glover, DO

Sarah C. Glover, DO

University of Mississippi Medical Center
Division of Digestive Diseases
2500 North State Street, Room S437
Jackson, MS 39216

Phone: 601-815-1770
scglover@umc.edu

Term of office: 2025


Kathleen S. Hering-Smith, PhD

Kathleen S. Hering-Smith, PhD

Tulane University Health Sciences Center
Section of Nephrology & Hypertension, 8545
1430 Tulane Avenue
New Orleans, LA 70112

Phone: 504-554-5889
Fax: 504-988-1909
khering@tulane.edu

Term of office: 2023

About Dr. Hering-Smith

Dr. Hering-Smith completed her undergraduate and Master of Science (both in Chemistry) education at Southern Illinois University, and obtained her PhD at Tulane University in 2004. In 2005, she was recruited to stay at Tulane University as Assistant Professor of Medicine. She has also held an Adjunct appointment in the Department of Physiology since 2006, teaches in both Physiology and the Aging Center and she has mentored several post-doctoral fellows and graduate students.

Dr. Hering-Smith's research has been funded by a VA MREP grant (KSHS), NIH Cobre Award (LG Navar, Physiology) and NIH-NIDDK RO1 (KSHS). Dr. Hering-Smith has served on both NIH-NIDDK and VA Merit study sections and also has served on the American Society of Nephrology Biosciences Research Advisory Group for 6 years (2009-2015). She has been an Editorial Board Member of the American Journal of Physiology Renal Physiology since 2013. At Tulane University she was elected to the Faculty Advisory Committee (2014-2017), is a permanent member of the Research Advisory Committee, Director of the School of Medicine Freezer Farm and the Director of the Nephrology and Hypertension Core Lab. At the Southeastern Louisiana Veterans Health Care System (SLVHCS) she has served on the following committees: Research and Development Biosafety Committee, Research and Development Committee (Vice-Chair 2008-2010), Research and Development Project Legacy Member and currently SLVHCS Research Service Integrated Project Team which is charged with getting the new SLVHCS Research Building ready for a move in date of early 2017.

Dr. Hering-Smith is a member of several societies: American Chemical Society, American Association for the Advancement of Science, American Heart Association Council on the Kidney,American Physiological Society (Elected 1999), American Society of Nephrology and the Southern Society for Clinical Investigation (Elected 2011).


Jesse T. Jacob, MD

Jesse T. Jacob, MD

Emory University School of Medicine
Orr Building, Suite 1020
550 Peachtree St NE
Atlanta, GA 30308

Phone: 404-686-1564
jtjacob@emory.edu

Term of office: 2024

About Dr. Jacob

Jesse T. Jacob, MD, FSSCI received his medical degree from the University of South Florida, and completed his internal medicine residency and chief residency at the Cleveland Clinic. After completing his fellowship in infectious diseases and earning an MSc in clinical research at Emory University, Dr. Jacob continued as faculty and is currently Associate Professor of Medicine and Epidemiology. He serves as the Hospital Epidemiologist at Emory University Hospital Midtown and directs an active clinical research program.

Dr. Jacob's research focuses on two major, related areas of healthcare epidemiology:

  1. understanding the risk factors for, and outcomes of, infections caused by multidrug-resistant organisms, especially as it relates to antibiotic stewardship; and
  2. preventing the transmission of pathogens causing healthcare-associated infections, particularly through the physical environment.

Dr. Jacob currently serves as PI for the Prevention Epicenter of Emory and Atlanta Consortium Hospitals, one of 11 CDC-funded sites nationally and also leads the Georgia Emerging Infection Program's surveillance for multidrug resistant gram negative organisms.

Dr. Jacob was elected to the SSCI in 2015, and is an active member of the SSCI, the Society of Healthcare Epidemiology of America and the Infectious Diseases Society of America.


Eleanor Lederer, MD

Eleanor Lederer, MD

University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center
Division of Nephrology
5323 Harry Hines Boulevard
Dallas, TX 75390

Phone: 214-645-6135
Eleanor.lederer@utsouthwestern.edu

Term of office: 2025


Dana Rizk, MD

Dana V. Rizk, MD

University of Alabama at Birmingham
Division of Nephrology
ZRB 614
1720 2nd Ave S
Birmingham, AL 35294

Phone: 205-934-9509
drizk@uab.edu

Term of office: 2024

About Dr. Rizk

Dr. Dana Rizk is currently Professor of Medicine in the Division of Nephrology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB). She completed her residency, chief residency and fellowship at Emory University Hospital and later joined the UAB faculty as Assistant Professor in 2008.

Dr. Rizk's exposure to clinical research started during her fellowship and she fell in love with this career path. However, beyond the science, clinical research opened her eyes to patients, families and volunteers' dedication and commitment to the advancement of science. Her current clinical and research interests revolve around glomerular diseases and, in particular IgA Nephropathy (IgAN). She is the principal investigator of several clinical trials and is part of several federally funded multi-disciplinary translational research projects focused on the pathogenesis of IgAN and the role of biomarkers.

About five years ago, Dr. Rizk was appointed Director of Clinical Trials Research in the Division of Nephrology. She set out to re-organize the infrastructure and teamwork behind the clinical trials in her division. Her goal was to have clinical trials accessible to patients. She also wanted to streamline the submission and budget negotiation process to make it more efficient and successful. In doing so, she hoped to engage junior investigators and trainees and build future ambassadors in clinical research.

In 2020, she was appointed Medical Director of the Clinical Trials Administrative Office which is part of the Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS). She was tasked to work with investigators on campus to grow the clinical trials portfolio. She is also in charge of the Clinical Investigator Training Program meant to introduce junior faculty and research fellows to clinical research and inform them of the role and responsibilities of a principal investigator. The course also raises their awareness of the many resources available to them on campus.

On the education side, Dr. Rizk is involved in residents and fellows' training. She serves on the clinical competency committees of both programs. She has mentored many trainees in clinical research. She is the proud recipient of numerous teaching awards.

In 2013, Dr. Rizk was elected member of the Southern Society of Clinical Investigation. She has served as council member of the Southern American Federation of Medical Research (SAFMR) since 2017 and as president of SAFMR (2018) she helped organize the Southern Regional Meeting in New Orleans.


Ruxana T. Sadikot, MD

Ruxana T. Sadikot, MD

Emory University School of Medicine
Division of Pulmonary & Critical Care

1017 Emory Parc Place
Decatur, GA 30033

Phone: 312-636-8872
ruxana.sadikot@emory.edu

Term of office: 2023

About Dr. Sadikot

Dr. Sadikot graduated from the Bombay University with Medical Doctorate following which she continued her medical training in England, Great Britain where she received the prestigious Membership of Royal College of Physicians (MRCP) in 1992 from London, United Kingdom. She then trained in respiratory medicine at Yorkshire Health Authority in the U.K following which she moved to the U.S. She completed a fellowship training in pulmonary and critical care medicine at the Vanderbilt University in Nashville TN in 2001 following which she was appointed as an Assistant Professor (tenure track) in the Division of Pulmonary and Critical Care. After four years she was recruited to the University of Illinois in Chicago where she served as the associate program director for pulmonary and critical care fellowship and was tenured and promoted to the rank of Associate Professor. In September 2012 she joined the University of Florida where she served as the section chief of Pulmonary and Critical Care Medicine for the Malcom Randall VA Hospital and was promoted to the rank of Professor of Medicine with tenure. In June 2014 Dr. Sadikot was recruited to the Emory University as Professor of Medicine and serves as the section chief of Pulmonary and Critical Medicine at the Atlanta VAMC.

Dr. Sadikot' s research career has focused on defining the lung immune response and mechanism of lung injury. In particular her research is focused on defining the role of lipid mediators (prostaglandins), PPARgamma, superimmunoglobulin receptor TREM-1 and mitochondrial function in resistant infections such as P.aeruginosa. She has published extensively on these topics in high impact peer reviewed journals and book chapters. Dr. Sadikot is funded by the Department of Veterans Affairs, National Institute of Health, CF foundation and industry. She serves on the editorial board of Clinical Respiratory Medicine, Biomedical Research International and is a senior editorial board member for Nature Scientific Report. Through her career, Dr. Sadikot has received numerous awards for excellence in teaching, patient care and research. Dr. Sadikot was elected as a Member of the SSCI in 2014. She received the prestigious Senior Mentor Award for Junior faculty from SSCI in 2019. Dr. Sadikot has mentored several graduate students, residents, post- doctoral fellows and junior faculty through her career.


S. Calvin Thigpen, MD

S. Calvin Thigpen, MD

University of Mississippi Medical Center
UMMC Cancer Institute
350 West Woodrow Wilson Drive
Jackson, MS 39213

Phone: 601-984-5590
Fax: 601-984-5599
sthigpen@umc.edu

Term of office: 2023


Juan Carlos Velez, MD

Juan Carlos Velez, MD

Ochsner Clinic Foundation
Department of Nephrology
1514 Jefferson Highway, Clinic Tower,
5th Floor, Rm 5E328, Ochsner Medical Center
New Orleans, LA 70121

Phone: 504-842-6571
juancarlos.velez@ochsner.org

Term of office: 2024


Nicholas Verne, MD

Nicholas Verne, MD

University of Tennessee College of Medicine
Department of Medicine
956 Court Avenue, Suite D3334
Memphis, TN 38163

Phone: 901-448-5752
gverne@uthsc.edu

Assistant: Jeanice White, jforrest4@uthsc.edu

Term of office: 2023

About Dr. Verne

Dr. Verne graduated Summa Cum Laude from LeMoyne College in Syracuse, NY with a bachelor's degree in Biology and Chemistry. He received his MD from SUNY Upstate Medical University in Syracuse, NY. Dr. Verne completed his Internal Medicine Residency at Albany Medical College in Albany, NY and his Gastroenterology Fellowship at the University of Florida in Gainesville, FL. Dr. Verne was then a faculty member at the University of Florida during which time he served as Chief of Gastroenterology at Malcolm Randall VAMC. In 2007, he became Professor and Chief of Gastroenterology and Hepatology and Program Director of the GI Fellowship at The Ohio State University in Columbus, OH. He then became Associate Chair of the Department of Medicine at University of Texas Medical Branch in 2011 and was The Blanton Distinguished Professor of Internal Medicine. In 2014, Dr. Verne became Professor and the Harry B. Greenberg, M.D. Chair in Internal Medicine at Tulane University School of Medicine.

Throughout his career, one of his major passions has been to mentor junior faculty in research. Many of these trainees are in academic positions and have obtained extramural funding. Dr. Verne serves on the editorial boards of Gastroenterology and AJPGI and on both NIH and VA study sections. He has also served as Vice-Chair and Chair of the ANMS Research Committee and currently serve on the ANMS Institute task force. His area of research focuses on translational research-from bench to bedside to examine the neurobiological mechanisms of altered motility and visceral nociception in FGIDs. Dr. Verne's research program has been continuously funded by the NIH and VA since 1999.

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