This week marks the end of my first year as your inaugural Executive Vice Chair. It has been and continues to be a phenomenal experience to serve the faculty and staff of our great Department of Medicine. I am extremely grateful to all of you for your support and encouragement during the past 12 months and for all the new relationships I have built despite having been a member of the department for 21 years. Since starting last February, I have worked collaboratively with Mark to build an expanded vice chair structure and have assisted in selecting and on-boarding vice chairs for basic/translational research, clinical/translational research, data integrity and analytics, commercialization and innovation and faculty development and promotion. I believe the investment in these individuals has greatly enhanced our ability to be responsive to each of our mission areas and will continue to return great benefit to all members of the department as we develop and execute our strategic plan. In the coming year I look forward to working with Mark and our Faculty Development team, led by Eric Bass, to initiate our annual divisional and faculty review processes.
I have worked closely with our Clinical Affairs team on the East Baltimore campus, led by Lee Daughtery-Biddison, Matt Lautzenheiser and Ron Langlotz, to support the vision for delivering safe, effective and high-quality inpatient and ambulatory care. I represent the Department of Medicine on the JHH Capacity Optimization Steering Committee, which is determining the best practices to enhance our ability to meet our ever-growing inpatient care needs in the context of Maryland’s Global Budget Revenue. As we are building our department’s compensation model, I am learning a lot through the School of Medicine Compensation Committee, which is reviewing each department’s policies.
The past year has brought two significant challenges that revealed to me the compassion, dedication and resilience of members of our department—the Baltimore City riots and Winter Storm Jonas! In April 2015, our city was shaken to its core by the Baltimore riots that followed Freddie Gray’s death. The Journeys in Medicine series gave our department an opportunity to have a frank conversation on the role of race in our relationship to the surrounding community. We continue to build on this theme to develop novel approaches to improving our environment, build a culture of respect and help us to become change agents in our community. Look out for the monthly Journeys in Medicine posts on the blog to read articles that challenge our thinking about the role of race in health and highlight effective interventions to reduce health disparities. In the coming year Darren Brownlee, assistant administrator of ambulatory operations, and I will introduce a Department of Medicine Civic Engagement Initiative.
Each day I feel blessed to be part of such a great department. I am grateful for the opportunity to give back and share the fruits of the intellectual, career and leadership development opportunities I’ve received throughout my training and early career. Thank you.