Kudos: Read about faculty, staff and alumni’s latest awards, appointments and achievements

Yasmine S. Ali, assistant clinical professor of medicine, has been elected chair of the Tennessee Medical Association’s Young Physician Section and will serve as its representative to the TMA board.

Conn (Vanderbilt)

Jeffrey Conn, director of Vanderbilt’s Center for Neuroscience Drug Discovery, has won the first Tennessee Governor’s Award for Innovation Excellence for efforts to accelerate the discovery of new drugs for Parkinson’s disease, schizophrenia and other brain disorders.

Janet Cross, director of Patient and Family-Centered Care for the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, has received the national Child Life Council’s Distinguished Service Award.

Sergio Fazio, professor of medicine, and MacRae F. Linton, professor of medicine, have been elected members of the Association of American Physicians.

Omar L. Hamada, associate clinical professor of medicine, has been elected to the Tennessee Medical Association Judicial Council.

Harris (Vanderbilt)

Karen Harris, professor and Currey Ingram Chair in Special Education and Literacy, has been appointed to a joint National Institute of Child Health and Human Development/International Reading Association expert panel on reading-writing connections. Harris also has been named to the Council for Exceptional Children’s Education Sciences Reform Act reauthorization workgroup.

Greta C. Holtz, a Vanderbilt alumna, has been nominated to serve as ambassador to the Sultanate of Oman by the U.S. Department of State
. Holtz is a career member of the Senior Foreign Service, Class of Minister-Counselor, and serves as deputy assistant secretary of state for public diplomacy and strategic communications in the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs. From 2009 to 2010, she was director for provincial affairs at the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad. Holtz entered the Foreign Service in 1985 and has served at U.S. missions in Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Tunisia and Syria and as principal officer in Adana, Turkey.

Michel A. McDonald, assistant professor of medicine and dermatology, has been elected to the Tennessee Medical Association Board of Trustees.

Milner (Vanderbilt)

Rich Milner, the Betts Associate Professor of Education, has received the Award of Distinction from Ohio State University’s Education and Human Ecology Alumni Society. This award is presented to alumni who have achieved national or international distinction in their field of endeavor for making a difference in the lives of others through outstanding professional, personal or community contributions.

Brian L. Sims, a 2010 Vanderbilt Law School alumnus, has been named an associate in the corporate and securities practice of Bass, Berry & Sims PLC. Previously, he was assistant general counsel at the Tennessee Department of Health.

Steven A. Webber has been named the James C. Overall Professor and chair of pediatrics at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and pediatrician-in-chief at the Monroe Carell Jr. Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt. Webber currently is the Peter and Ada Rossin Chair in Pediatric Cardiology and professor of pediatrics at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and chief of the Division of Pediatric Cardiology at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.