Professorships Recently Inaugurated

Spring 2016
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Endowed professorships are among the highest honors the U-M Medical School awards to our faculty. These professorships, often made possible by the generosity of private individuals and foundations, honor the groundbreaking work faculty pursue — in the name of education, patient care and research. 


Sandra Wong, M.D., associate professor of surgery, associate chair for clinical affairs for the Department of Surgery and associate chief of staff for the University of Michigan Health System, was named the first William W. Coon Collegiate Professor in Surgical Oncology in a June 8 ceremony. Established in part through a gift from Coon's wife, Jane Coon, Ph.D., the professorship honors Coon's (Residency 1956) 47 years of creative and dedicated service in surgery.

On June 18, the Joyce and Don Massey Family Foundation Professorship was established through a gift from the foundation. It will support a tenured faculty member in the Department of Surgery whose research and clinical efforts are related to helping those who are brain injured, as well as their families. Lena Napolitano, M.D., the division chief of Acute Care Surgery, chief of Surgical Critical Care, program director of the Surgical Critical Care Fellowship, associate chair and professor of surgery, will serve as the first Massey Professor.

The David F. Bohr Collegiate Professorship in Physiology honors Bohr's (M.D. 1942) career as a visionary Michigan physician-scientist, and is a testament to his legacy as a cherished teacher and mentor. Malcolm Low, M.D., Ph.D., professor of molecular and integrative physiology and of internal medicine, was formally installed as the first Bohr professor during an Aug. 11 ceremony.

On Aug. 26, two H. Marvin Pollard Collegiate Professorships were inaugurated. Pollard, whose career at U-M lasted nearly four decades, made significant contributions to the field of gastroenterology. Grace Elta (M.D. 1977), professor of internal medicine, became the H. Marvin Pollard Professor of Gastroenterology, while Thomas Wang, M.D., Ph.D., associate professor of internal medical, of biomedical engineering and of mechanical engineering, was named the H. Marvin Pollard Professor of Endoscopy Research.

The Madeline and Sidney Forbes Professorship in Oncology was established through a generous gift from Sidney Forbes and his wife, Madeline, and supports cancer research. Max Wicha, M.D., was named the first Forbes Professor in an Aug. 31 ceremony. Wicha, who was recently appointed by President Obama to serve on the National Cancer Advisory Board, is the founding director emeritus of the U-M Comprehensive Cancer Center, deputy director of the A. Alfred Taubman Medical Research Institute and professor of internal medicine.

On Sept. 28, Daniel Goldman, Ph.D., professor and interim chair of the Department of Biological Chemistry and research professor at the Molecular and Behavioral Neurosciences Institute, was installed as the Bernard W. Agranoff Collegiate Professor of Neuroscience. Established through gifts from friends, family and the institute, this professorship honors Agranoff's research and teaching contributions as a biochemist, neurochemist, neuroscientist and educator.

The John F. Greden Professorship in Depression and Clinical Neuroscience was formally established through funds donated by Mary and Edwin Meader. Greden, founder and executive director of the U-M Comprehensive Depression Center and the Rachel Upjohn Professor of Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences, made lasting contributions to depression research. The Meaders supported charities and universities throughout Michigan including the Depression Center and ambulatory psychiatry programs. The center was the first of its kind in the world. Sagar Parikh, M.D., professor of psychiatry and associate director of the Depression Center, was installed as the first  Greden Professor in an Oct. 15 ceremony.

On Oct. 21, the Angela Dobson Welch and Lyndon Welch Research Professorship was inaugurated. The Welches became interested in Alzheimer’s disease research being conducted at the U-M and decided to make a transformative gift to the Department of Neurology. Sami Barmada, M.D., Ph.D., assistant professor of neurology, is the first Welch Professor.

Suzanne Moenter (Ph.D. 1991), professor of molecular and integrative physiology, of obstetrics and gynecology and of internal medicine, was installed as the first Fred J. Karsh Collegiate Professor of Physiology during a Nov. 11 ceremony. Karsh is a trailblazer in the field of neuroendocrinology and his early work on steroid feedback regulation of the gonadotropin-releasing hormone (GnRH) pulse generator was critical to the elucidation of the cyclical changes of the female reproductive cycle. The professorship was made possible through generous gifts from Karsh and his wife, Nora, as well as from a host of friends and supporters.

The Aldred S. Warthin Professorship in Experimental Pathology celebrates Warthin's (M.D. 1891, PhD. 1893) brilliance, which yielded extraordinary accomplishments in medical sciences as well as in music, literature and art. A previous professorship was established in his honor in 1988, and it is from this initial endowment that the new professorship was made possible. Asma Nusrat, M.D., professor of pathology and director of experimental pathology in the Department of Pathology, was formally inaugurated during a Nov. 16 ceremony.

James Shayman, M.D., professor of pharmacology and of internal medicine, became the Agnes C. and Frank D. McKay Professor in a Dec. 3 ceremony. The professorship was made possible through the sale of the McKay Tower, a 16-story building in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids. Originally owned by businessman Frank McKay, the building was willed to the U-M as part of a trust when McKay died in 1965.

Rajesh Mangrulkar, M.D., associate dean for medical student education and associate professor of internal medicine and learning health sciences, was installed as the first Marguerite S. Roll Professor of Medical Education in a Dec. 9 ceremony. This is the second professorship made possible by the Rolls — Marguerite Swallen Roll, who died in 1996, and her husband, Kellogg executive Lyle C. Roll, who died in 1984 — and honors their philanthropic sprit.