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At the Top

On October 6 we welcome Jen Steiman, MD, to the Department of Surgery in the the Division of General Surgery. Dr. Steiman was most recently the Society of Surgical Oncology Fellow in Breast Surgical Oncology at Magee-Womens Hospital at the University of Pittsburgh. She is a graduate of Southern Illinois University School of Medicine, where she also completed her residency in general surgery. Here at the UW, Dr. Steiman will pursue a surgical outcomes/health services research program. Welcome, Dr. Steiman!


Ankush Gosain, MD, PhD, was awarded the prestigious George H.A. Clowes Career Development Award from the American College of Surgeons. This five-year award will provide $45,000 annually in support of his research project “Gastrointestinal Mucosal Immune Defects in Hirschsprung’s Disease.” Only one award is made in the nation and this is the most prestigious award given by the American Colleges of Surgeons for junior faculty.


The multidisciplinary Dysphagia Clinic at the UW Digestive Health Center opened on September 25, serving patients one day a week. The clinic specializes in combined care for swallowing disorders and is a joint effort of the Digestive Health Center, Gastroenterology, and the Department of Surgery’s Division of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery. Under the direction of UW Voice and Swallow Clinics Director Susan Thibeault, PhD, CCC-SLP, a team of more than 30 people worked to get this clinic up and running, including IT, administration and provider staff. Dr. Thibeault plans to expand the clinic to include other disciplines and offer services five days a week.


Students in the UW Physician Assistant Program recently voted Annie Sugar, PA-C, Instructor of the Year. Since 2006, Annie has been involved with students in the Physician Assistant Program in several ways, volunteering as a preceptor, acting as an advisor on medical trips to Belize and Guatemala, and lecturing. Annie has worked in the Department of Surgery’s Division of Otolaryngology-Head & Neck Surgery since 2005, and she is currently working toward a master’s degree in physician assistant studies. Congratulations, Annie!

Carla Pugh, MD, PhD, was honored on October 1 as one of eight recipients of the UW-Madison Outstanding Women of Color awards. Dr. Pugh was recognized for her amazing contributions to research in both campus and community activities. She was nominated for her “contributions to further social justice and improve the diversity of science and medicine through her advocacy, outreach and dedicated mentorship. Carla has inspired, motivated and empowered a generation of youth from underrepresented backgrounds, including women and young people of color, to pursue careers in science and medicine. She is a coveted speaker and encouraging spokeswoman on issues of women and people of color, particularly in the surgical profession.” Congratulations, Dr. Pugh!

In Memoriam

Distinguished geneticist and Wisconsin native Ray Owen died September 21 at the age of 98. While working in the UW Genetics Department in the 1940s, Owen discovered the phenomenon of immune tolerance in twin calves. His findings were published in 1945, later becoming the groundwork for human organ transplantation. Owen left Wisconsin in 1947 to join the faculty of Caltech in Pasadena, California, but his name and work live on in the UW Department of Surgery through the research of Dixon Kaufman, MD, PhD, the Ray D. Owen Professor of Surgery and chairman of the transplantation division. Read the full In Memoriam piece on Owen from UW News. Copyright © 2017 The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System