“Leadership is an action, not a position.”

– Donald McGannon


Dear Colleagues and Friends,


Dr. Martha Terris selected to serve as American Board of Urology trustee…

She’s a fantastic educator, who has directed our Urology Residency Training Program since 2003, and has mentored countless students and residents – many of whom have, or will, return to our medical school and teaching hospitals as faculty after completing their training. She’s a gifted physician whose passion and empathy for her patients inspires us all. She’s a discerning, inquisitive researcher. Our Dr. Martha Terris, Witherington Distinguished Chair and chief of our Section of Urology, is absolutely a leader by any definition. We are pleased to share another huge confirmation of that with the American Board of Urology selecting her for a six-year term as the newest member of its Board of Trustees. It’s definitely worth noting that she was nominated by the newly-formed Society of Academic Urologists, which combined the Society of Urologic Chairs and Program Directors and the Society of University Urologists, and she’s been an active member of both!


And to help certify the nation’s nearly 12,000 urologists…

Dr. Terris has also been selected by the board, which maintains standards of certification for urologists, as an examiner for the 2017 Certifying Examination, an oral exam that’s the final step before being cleared to practice. Truly important and meaningful stuff here! Certainly, Dr. Terris, like so many of you, is no stranger to the leadership stage. She came to us in 2002 by way of Stanford University, where she completed her training and served on the faculty, and the VA Palo Alto Health Care System, where she was chief of urology. She was also chief of urology across the street at the Charlie Norwood VA Medical Center from 2006-13. She’s consistently named among America’s Top Doctors, Best Doctors in America, and Americas Top Doctors in Cancer, she serves on the Residency Review Committee for Urology and has lent her expertise to organizations like the previously-mentioned Society for Urologic Chairs and Program Directors and the, also already mentioned, Society for University Urologists, both of which she served as president. She’s also lent her time to the American Urological Association’s Annual Meeting Program and Nominating Committees. Whew! We’re tired simply telling you about all of that. Thank you Dr. Terris for your endless willingness to serve, your dedication to your profession, and for representing our medical school so well!


Research aims to identify what treatments work best for children with rare condition…

We wanted to tell you today about some recent super cool work from Dr. Drew Prosser, a graduate of our medical school who also completed his otolaryngology residency here and came back to join our faculty last summer. Dr. Prosser is leading the charge to find the best treatments for children with a rare condition that can affect their ability to talk and even breathe. Infection with the common human papillomavirus can lead to recurrent respiratory papillomatosis, or RRP, which can leave kids chronically hoarse and struggling to breathe. Super relevant since the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention tells us that 75 percent of the reproductive age population has been exposed to sexually transmitted HPV. Fortunately, most babies exposed to the virus through the process of development and birth, eventually clear it. But those that don’t can require multiple surgeries as the papilloma grows in their voice box. Prosser was one of only two individuals to receive a grant this year from the American Society of Pediatric Otolaryngology. With that, he is taking biopsies from the vocal chords of affected children and placing them in a mouse model in hopes of getting a “fine-tuned” model for the disease, which has no accurate animal model. He’ll monitor the process closely over 12 weeks to see if the growth remains essentially the same in the mouse, and if it does, he could have a model he could use to eventually test the best individualized treatment for a child as well as evolving new therapies. Fascinating stuff that you can read more about ithere. Thank you Dr. Prosser for your dedication to our youngest patients and to finding better cures and treatments for them!


Dr. Dolen honored for a lifetime of achievements…

Speaking of those who serve the smallest among us, we are super pleased to tell you that Dr. Bill Dolen, pediatric allergist and immunologist and our longtime fellowship program director and clinical laboratory director in the Section of Allergy and Immunology, has been recognized with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Southeastern Allergy, Asthma and Immunology Society. The award honors a member who demonstrates a commitment to the value and power of lifelong education in the field and, certainly, Dr. Dolen has done and continues to do just that! He has been a part of our faculty for more than 20 years and has been extensively involved in medical education here at every level. He also serves as a member of the World Allergy Organization’s Education Council, as vice-chair of the American College of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology’s Abstract Review Committee and as chair of the college’s Ethics Committee. Even all of that aside, Dr. Lee Clore, a Kentucky allergist and immunologist, who is executive secretary and treasurer for SEAAIS, tells us that Dr. Dolen was recognized for his years of service to the group, and notes that he’s pretty famous for his “Beat the Professor” educational sessions, which have won him the award for best presentation at the groups’ annual meetings many times. Congratulations on this well-deserved honor Dr. Dolen!


Medical students sweep MAG poster competition….

We told you a couple of weeks back about the Medical Association of Georgia awarding its Raines Humanitarian Award posthumously to Dr. J. Harold Harrison at its House of Delegates meeting in Savannah. Well, we were remiss to not also report then that our students made an excellent showing in Savannah as well. In fact, they swept the medical student abstract competition and poster presentations in every category! All told, we had 10 stellar students present their research in public health, clinical science, basic science and case studies, which they’d worked on with faculty mentors in Augusta, at sites where they are doing clinical rotations and at our partnership campus in Athens. These superstars are are, deep breath, Saadia Hasan, Brooke Schermerhorn, Alexandra Vagasi, Mohit Agarwal, Sehrish Viqar, Brittany Truitt, Hannah Childs, Courtney Alvis, Max Green and Charles Gober. We hear that the winners of each category will have their work published in an upcoming issue of the Journal of the Medical Association of Georgia.  You can see pictures of their presentations here. Thank you all for showing the rest of the world what we already knew. Our students rock!



Upcoming Events


Through Monday – Snuggle Up for Safety Drive, a supply drive for victims of domestic violence. Wish list items include toiletries, clothing, household items and other miscellaneous things like arts and craft supplies, board games, book bags and strollers. Drop off donations on the Summerville Campus in University Hall, Suite 325, Allgood Hall, Room N 218, or the Student Counseling & Psychological Services office on the second floor of the Central Energy Plant. On the Health Sciences campus, donations can be left at the Dental College of Georgia in Suite 5205. You can also donate at the Christenberry Fieldhouse on Wrightsboro Road.

Nov. 1 – Alumni Association Rome Regional Reception. Coosa Country Club, 6 p.m.

Nov. 4 – Body Donation Memorial Service, 1 p.m., Lee Auditorium.

Nov. 5 – White Coat Ceremony, Bell Auditorium, 2:30 p.m.; reception to follow at the Old Medical College building.

Dec. 1 – Ambulatory Care Services 12th Annual Silent Auction to benefit the American Heart Association, 10:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Terrace Dining. Help with gift baskets and other items for auction is needed. Contact Steve Galles, sgalles@augusta.edu or Judy Howard, jhoward@augusta.edu for more information.


Have a terrific weekend!