Juan A. Asensio, MD, FACS, FCCM, FRCSEng, chief, division of trauma surgery and surgical critical care, Creighton University School of Medicine, Omaha, NE, recently was selected for two high honors.
In November 2018, Dr. Asensio, professor of clinical and translational science at Creighton, and adjunct professor of surgery, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, MD, was elected distinguished member of the Royal National Academy of Medicine, Madrid, Spain. In Spain, the distinction of becoming an academic at the Royal National Academy is considered to be the highest honor bestowed on physicians of all specialties. Prof. Enrique Moreno-Gonzalez, MD, FACS(Hon), introduced Dr. Asensio at the induction ceremony.
In August 2019, Dr. Asensio was awarded the Danis Prize by the International Society of Surgery (ISS)/Le Société Internationale de Chirurgie. The prestigious Danis Prize is awarded to a surgeon who has made seminal contributions to the care of wounded and injured patients. The ISS was founded in 1902, and the prize has been awarded to only 31 surgeons in the society’s history. Dr. Asensio received the Danis Prize at the 48th World Congress of Surgery in Krakow, Poland.
Ronald Robertson, MD, FACS, in May assumed the position of chair, department of surgery, College of Medicine, University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS), Little Rock.
A UAMS faculty member since 1996, Dr. Robertson has served as chief of the division of trauma, critical care, and acute care surgery since 2013. He became vice-chair for clinical affairs in the department of surgery in 2018. Dr. Robertson was a driving force in the establishment of the Arkansas Trauma System in 2010, and as trauma medical director at UAMS since 2013 he leads the only American College of Surgeons (ACS)-verified Adult Level I trauma center in the state. The center performs in the top 10 percent of Level I trauma centers nationwide.
Dr. Robertson completed a fellowship in trauma, critical care, and burn surgery at UAMS before joining the faculty as an assistant professor. He was promoted to associate professor in 2001 and to professor in 2008. Early leadership posts included director of the burn unit at Arkansas Children’s Hospital, Little Rock, from 1995 to 2005.
William G. Cance, MD, FACS, recently was selected as the American Cancer Society’s chief medical and scientific officer. Dr. Cance will lead the integration of the society’s research and cancer control departments, unifying its intramural and extramural research; prevention and early detection; patient and caregiver support and service strategies; global cancer control; and health systems engagement programs. Dr. Cance began his new position October 21 at the American Cancer Society headquarters, Atlanta, GA.
Since 2016, Dr. Cance has served as deputy director and interim director of the University of Arizona (UA) Comprehensive Cancer Center, Tucson. There, he established a culture of collaboration that advanced cancer care and treatment. He also is a professor in the departments of interdisciplinary oncology, pharmacology, and toxicology, and surgery for the UA Colleges of Medicine and Pharmacy, Phoenix, AZ.
Dr. Cance has an active surgical oncology practice and is the principal investigator for a 25-year National Cancer Institute grant focused on focal adhesion kinase, a protein involved in cancer metastasis. He also has been an American Cancer Society grantee, holds eight patents, and has been involved in several entrepreneurial projects to bring his research advancements to market.
Jeffery Upperman, MD, FACS, will succeed John Brock III, MD, FACS, as surgeon-in-chief, Monroe Carell, Jr., Children’s Hospital at Vanderbilt, Nashville, TN, in November.
Dr. Upperman was chosen after an extensive national search and has been director of the trauma program at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA), CA, since 2006. He since has achieved national recognition as an expert in trauma, disaster preparedness, and injury prevention. He oversees the CHLA’s ACS Level I pediatric trauma center and serves as tenured professor of surgery at the University of Southern California, Los Angeles. Dr. Upperman will be Monroe Carell’s second surgeon-in-chief.
Dr. Brock, who served as surgeon-in-chief at the children’s hospital for 17 years, will transition to focus on his role as senior vice-president of pediatric surgical services and will become surgeon-in-chief emeritus. He also will continue his roles as pediatric urologist and Monroe Carell Jr. Professor. Under Dr. Brock’s guidance as surgeon-in-chief, case volumes for all surgical specialties at Children’s Hospital have tripled, transparent patient quality and safety models have been developed, and multiple off-site clinics have been established.