Gold W


photo Dr. Johns

August 2007

Table of Contents:

  • Meet the New WHSC CEO Online
  • Rollins School of Public Health Receives $50 Million Rollins Gift
  • Emory and deCODE Collaborate on Gene Discovery
  • Emory CFAR Funding Renewed
  • Lung Transplant Program Receives $5.4 Million
  • School of Medicine Chosen to Help Develop Curriculum in End-of-Life Care
  • CEO Named for Emory Johns Creek Hospital
  • $3 Million Fuqua Gift Supports Depression Services in Rural Areas
  • Emory Hospital Named Again in Annual Ranking of the Nation’s Best Hospitals
  • Children’s at Egleston Opens First New Area in Overall Expansion and Renovation
  • Honors and Appointments
  • Leadership Thoughts
  • Meet the New WHSC CEO Online

    Photo of SanfilippoCheck out video footage and audio on the Woodruff Health Sciences Center website about Dr. Fred Sanfilippo, who, as announced last month, will become the new WHSC CEO on October 1. Dr. Sanfilippo is coming to Emory from Ohio State, where he is Senior Vice President and Executive Dean for Health Sciences. During a recent visit, he answered media questions at a press conference, discussing the progress of predictive health programs at Emory and OSU and collaborations between the two.

    To hear Dr. Sanfilippo's remarks on this and other topics, as well as remarks from President James Wagner about his appointment, go to

    Be sure to mark your calendars for Monday, October 1, at 6 p.m., when Dr. Sanfilippo will give a public address in the WHSCAB Auditorium followed by a reception on the Plaza level.

    Rollins School of Public Health Receives $50 Million Rollins Gift

    Last month, President Wagner announced that the Rollins School of Public Health had received a $50 million commitment from the O. Wayne Rollins Foundation and Grace Crum Rollins. The gift will allow the school to more than double its space through construction of a world-class facility connected to the school’s current home, the Grace Crum Rollins Building. The new space will create a public health complex designed to enhance collaboration with the school’s partners, both within and outside Emory, and will accelerate teaching and research in areas such as global health, predictive health, infectious disease, nutrition, cancer, diabetes, and other chronic diseases. The space will also allow the school to reunite researchers and programs now scattered in eight locations.

    This gift is the latest and largest in a series of pivotal contributions from the Rollins family to support both the Woodruff Health Sciences Center and the University. The gifts include two buildings and a hospital pavilion that carry the Rollins name, creation of a Center for Public Health Preparedness, and a number of named professors in public health, in addition to major earlier gifts to the Candler School of Theology.

    This latest gift is a transformational one that will help us leverage resources with our partners in public health to meet the world’s greatest challenges to health and well-being.

    Emory and deCODE Collaborate on Gene Discovery

    Photo of RyeEmory neurology researchers/clinicians, including sleep specialist Dr. David Rye, a 2007 Woodruff Leadership Academy Fellow, collaborated with deCODE Genetics in Reykjavik, Iceland, to identify the first gene associated with restless legs syndrome (RLS).

    RLS is a common sleep disorder affecting about 10% of the U.S. population. The gene is also common — more than 65% of the population carries at least one copy. The finding was the result of a four-year study in which the team conducted genome-wide scans of nearly 1,000 Icelanders and 188 Americans. Results of the study appeared July 18 in the online edition of the New England Journal of Medicine.


    Emory CFAR Funding Renewed

    Photo of CurranThe National Institutes of Health (NIH) recently awarded the Emory Center for AIDS Research (CFAR) $8.47 million in a grant renewing Emory’s designation as an NIH CFAR site, one of only 18 in the country. The new grant will help facilitate growth of AIDS research in five core areas: biostatistics, social and behavioral science, clinical research, immunology, and virology/drug discovery.




    Photo of DelRioEmory first received such designation in 1998, with funding last renewed in 2002. In the years since the Emory CFAR was first established, total HIV/AIDS research funding at Emory increased nearly threefold, from $23 million in 1996 to $59 million in 2005. The Emory CFAR includes more than 120 member investigators, including collaborators at Georgia Tech and Morehouse. Of the approximately 10,000 patients receiving care for HIV/AIDS in Atlanta, Emory CFAR clinicians provide care to nearly 7,000. The CFAR also has trained hundreds of investigators, educators, policy-makers, and community advocates, and has helped expand the ability of more than 20 countries to address their own AIDS epidemics.

    Congratulations to all in securing funding to carry this important work forward, especially to CFAR co-directors Jim Curran (top left) and Carlos del Rio (above left).

    Lung Transplant Program Receives $5.4 Million

    Philanthropist Andrew McKelvey, founder of Monster Worldwide, has given $5.4 million to support Emory’s lung transplant center, which is directed by pulmonologist Clinton Lawrence. The center was named for McKelvey in 2001, after his initial gift of $20 million. These investments are helping researchers develop new medical therapies for lung disorders, in hopes of eliminating the need for transplants, and new strategies for improving outcomes after surgery. The center’s name is being changed to the McKelvey Center for Lung Transplantation and Pulmonary Vascular Diseases to reflect its broadening scope of clinical and laboratory-based activities.

    Emory’s lung transplant program began in 1993 and today remains the only such program in Georgia. As of January, Emory specialists had done 200 adult and pediatric lung transplants. Nationally, about 1,000 patients receive lung transplants each year.

    School of Medicine Chosen to Help Develop Curriculum in End-of-Life Care

    The School of Medicine was one of six schools chosen by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation for funding to develop and implement a palliative care curriculum for medical students. This initiative stemmed from a mandate in 2000 by the Liaison Committee on Medical Education that all medical schools must teach about end-of-life care, an area in which medical students traditionally have received little or no training by the time they finish medical school. At Emory, the award will be used to develop training opportunities for third and fourth-year students and to establish a faculty development program in palliative care.

    CEO Named for Emory Johns Creek Hospital

    John Quinlivan has been named CEO of Emory Johns Creek Hospital, effective September 10, 2007. Mr. Quinlivan is currently the COO for Hospital Corporation of America's (HCA) North Florida Regional Medical Center in Gainesville, where he has been instrumental in helping North Florida achieve a number one ranking in operating performance across the Eastern group of the company. The 110-bed Emory Johns Creek Hospital is part of EHCA, which is governed jointly by Emory Healthcare and HCA. EHCA also includes Emory Eastside Medical Center. For more information about Emory Johns Creek, visit, or about EHCA, see

    $3 Million Fuqua Gift Supports Depression Services in Rural Areas

    A recent gift of $3 million from the estate of J.B. Fuqua will help expand treatment in rural and medically underserved areas of Georgia for depression in the elderly. The gift supports efforts of the Fuqua Center for Late-Life Depression, created in 1999 by the late entrepreneur and philanthropist. Working with the Georgia Department of Human Resources, the center has trained care managers to detect depression and monitor treatment effectiveness. These providers care for more than 20,000 frail, nursing home-eligible seniors who choose to remain in their homes. This work supports an NIH grant proposal the center is developing to track gaps in mental health resources and treatment effectiveness and to develop culturally competent services for older adults across the state.

    This latest gift brings the total Fuqua contributions in this effort to $8 million.

    Emory Hospital Named Again in Annual Ranking of the Nation’s Best Hospitals

    In annual hospital rankings published last month in U.S. News & World Report, Emory University Hospital was named among the nation’s best hospitals in eight specialties (more than any other hospital in Georgia), including six in the top 25. No other hospital in the state shares rankings in the same categories as Emory. Overall, Emory is one of only 173 hospitals out of more than 5,400 medical centers in the country to be named in the magazine’s top 50 rankings.

    Emory University Hospital's specialty rankings are as follows: geriatrics (11), psychiatry (12), heart and heart surgery (16), ophthalmology (16), ear, nose, and throat (21), neurology and neurosurgery (25), kidney disease (35), and urology (47).         

    All hospital data and the 2007 rankings were compiled by RTI International on behalf of U.S. News & World Report. To be considered for this year's rankings, a hospital had to satisfy at least one of three requirements: membership in the Council of Teaching Hospitals, medical school affiliation, or availability of at least nine out of 18 key technology-related services such as magnetic resonance imaging and positron emission tomography. Reputation, mortality ratio, the measurement of a hospital's ability to keep patients alive, and a group of other care-related factors, such as RN-to-bed ratios and patient/community services, are also considered. U.S. News looks at entire specialties rather than at specific procedures in an effort to identify hospitals that excel in a variety of tough cases across a specialty.

    For more information about the complete list of hospitals and the methodology used, see

    Children’s at Egleston Opens First New Area in Overall Expansion and Renovation

    Last month, Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta at Egleston celebrated the opening of the first completed area of a new five-story patient tower, part of a $365 million expansion project that eventually will add approximately 375,900 square feet of new space and 95,800 square feet of renovated space to the hospital. In addition to four new levels of underground parking, the newly opened area includes a three-story atrium lobby and new space for heart and surgical services. Other renovations and expansions scheduled for the future include outpatient cancer services, pediatric intensive care, surgery, emergency, and radiology.

    This construction is occurring at a time of remarkable growth in Atlanta’s pediatric population, which over the past five years has increased by 120,000 and is expected to increase by another 120,000 by 2010.

    Honors and Appointments

    Photo of BerkelmanDr. Ruth Berkelman has been named an ambassador in the Paul G. Rogers Society for Global Health Research, an advocacy organization established with funds from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. Society ambassadors are an elite group, currently including three Nobel laureates, who meet with opinion leaders and decision makers to underscore the need for research on issues affecting the global community. The goals of the Society include ensuring that large-scale health programs are well implemented, to further progress in diagnostics, vaccines, and other strategies to improve the health of those in impoverished nations, and to prevent the emergence and spread of disease throughout the world.


    Photo of MargolisMarilyn Margolis, RN, is the winner of Nursing Management's 2007 Visionary Leader Award. Margolis, a 2005 Woodruff Leadership Academy Fellow and the Director of Nursing Emergency Services at Emory University Hospital, will be flown to Chicago next month to receive this prestigious award among a group of nursing colleagues from around the country.





    Photo of MoeDr. Christine Moe has been named Eugene Gangarosa Chair and Director of the Emory Center for Global Safe Water in the Rollins School of Public Health. An associate professor in the Hubert Department of Global Health, Dr. Moe has been at Emory for seven years and has joint appointments in Epidemiology, and Environmental and Occupational Health. Her research focus is environmental transmission of infectious agents, including noroviruses, and sanitation and health. In 2006, she received the World Bank Development Marketplace Award for her sanitation project in Bolivia. James Hughes, MD, former interim director of the center, will continue to serve as senior adviser and assist in developing partnerships and collaborative research.


    Leadership Thoughts

    We first brought the term "Momentum" to regular use in the Woodruff Health Sciences Center about 11 years ago. My basic definition of momentum is the success and strength gained by a consistent series of actions, events, and accomplishments. At that time, I could not have imagined the momentum the Woodruff Health Sciences Center would create over the next 11 years. Because of your actions and accomplishments, we have created energy and excitement that is the envy of most every academic health center in the nation. 

    Creating this momentum has required a tremendous amount of individual commitment.  There are some across the WHSC who wonder if we have been "running a marathon at a sprinter’s pace" over the past decade.  I think that captures much of what we have done here as a team. We know the race is a long one, but we also know that there is no time to waste. I have quoted Mr. Robert W. Woodruff many times in terms of his appreciation for those who can see not only down the valley ahead of them but also over the next mountain. Mr. Woodruff was a genius in many ways, and a man way ahead of his time when it came to successfully leading the Coca-Cola Company. I know he would be proud that we have chosen a pace and a path that will position us as a leading health sciences center for many decades to come. 


    Michael M.E. Johns, MD
    CEO, Woodruff Health Sciences Center

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