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Appointments and awards: Kumar, Quiben, Acosta, Ramirez, Shireman and Steffensen

Appointments and awards

September 2012

Charles P. France, Ph.D., professor of pharmacology and psychiatry, assumed duties this summer as a councilor to the American Society for Pharmacology & Experimental Therapeutics. The society offers publications, networking opportunities and other professional services to more than 4,500 members. Dr. France is the principal investigator on multiple research studies supported by National Institutes of Health (NIH) grants. Three of these studies examine the behavioral pharmacology of drug dependence, the role of impulsivity in drug abuse, and dietary influences on drug abuse and dependence. He is also principal investigator of an NIH grant-funded project to train young investigators in drug abuse research.

Kaparaboyna Ashok Kumar, M.D., FRCS, FAAFP, has been appointed to serve a four-year term on the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP) Commission on Health of the Public and Science. Dr. Kumar is vice chair of medical student education and clerkship director in the School of Medicineís Department of Family & Community Medicine. On the commission, Dr. Kumar will work with AAFP staff and other family physicians from around the country to develop and review evidence-based clinical practice guidelines, and establish recommendations for clinical preventive services, including immunizations, review policies on tobacco and exercise and obesity. He also will represent AAFP with federal, medical specialty, voluntary health and other organizations, and serve on advisory committees for academy programs.

Myles Quiben, Ph.D., D.P.T., PT, GCS, NCS, CEEAA, assistant professor, and Martha Acosta, Ph.D., PT, M.S., GCS, assistant professor, both in the Department of Physical Therapy, have been appointed to posts with the American Board of Physical Therapy Specialties. Dr. Quiben is one of nine members from a national pool that oversees the American Physical Therapy Association Specialist Certification Program and its processes. Dr. Acosta has been appointed to the Geriatric Specialty Council, which she will chair the final year of the appointment term.

Amelie G. Ramirez, Dr.P.H., professor of epidemiology and biostatistics and director of the Institute for Health Promotion Research, has been elected for a three-year term to the board of directors for C-Change, a national organization that aims to leverage the expertise of leaders from government, business and nonprofit sectors of society to eliminate cancer as a major health problem. She was also named to the National Collaborative on Childhood Obesity Research (NCCOR) External Scientific Panel. The NCCOR aims to accelerate progress toward reducing the problem of childhood obesity in America. Dr. Ramirez holds the Dielmann Chair in Health Disparities Research & Community Outreach and the Max and Minnie Tomerlin Voelcker Endowed Chair in Cancer Health Care Disparities.

Paula Shireman, M.D., has been appointed to serve on the American Heart Associationís (AHA) National Research Committee. Dr. Shireman is a vascular surgeon who sees patients through UT Medicine San Antonio, the clinical practice of the School of Medicine. She also serves as a professor of vascular surgery in the Department of Surgery and vice dean for research in the School of Medicine, where she has received numerous research grants from the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Veterans Affairs, the American Heart Association and others. Dr. Shireman studies inflammatory-mediated mechanisms of angiogenesis and skeletal muscle generation in her lab. She has served as chair of the regional affiliate of the AHA Research Advisory Committee as well as on its board of directors.

Bjorn Steffensen, D.D.S., M.S., Ph.D., associate dean for research and professor of periodontics in the Dental School, and professor of biochemistry in the School of Medicine, has been accepted as a fellow in the American Dental Education Association (ADEA) Leadership Institute. His yearlong ADEA fellowship program, which began in March, is designed to develop the nationís most promising individuals at academic dental institutions to become leaders in dental and higher education. Dr. Steffensen was also named a recipient of the Irwin D. Mandel Distinguished Mentoring Award this past spring by the American Association of Dental Research (AADR). The national honor recognizes outstanding efforts to foster and promote research training and career development of students, trainees and junior faculty. The award is named for the late Irwin D. Mandel, D.D.S., professor emeritus of dental medicine at Columbia College of Dental Medicine, who was the ninth president of the AADR and the inaugural recipient of the award.

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