Alice Hamilton Professor of Medicine and Director
John Z. Ayanian, MD, MPP
Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, University of Michigan
John Z. Ayanian, MD, MPP, is the inaugural Director of the Institute for Healthcare Policy and Innovation, which includes over 500 faculty members from 14 schools and colleges at the University of Michigan, where he is also the Alice Hamilton Professor of Medicine, Professor of Health Management and Policy, Professor of Public Policy, and a practicing general internist. He previously served as Professor of Medicine and Health Care Policy at Harvard Medical School and Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health.
Dr. Ayanian has led influential studies of access to care, quality of care, and health disparities related to race, ethnicity, socioeconomic factors, and insurance coverage. He currently leads a team of 15 faculty members conducting the federally-authorized 5-year evaluation of the Healthy Michigan Plan, which has expanded Medicaid coverage to more than 650,000 adults in Michigan. From 2014 through 2016 he served as an Associate Editor of the New England Journal of Medicine, and in 2016 he was elected to the AcademyHealth Board of Directors.
Dr. Ayanian is a Fellow of the American College of Physicians and an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine. He has received the John Eisenberg National Award for Career Achievement in Research from the Society of General Internal Medicine and the Distinguished Investigator Award from AcademyHealth. He received his bachelor’s degree in history and political science from Duke University, his medical degree from Harvard Medical School, and his master’s degree in public policy from the Harvard Kennedy School. He completed residency and fellowship training in primary care internal medicine at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and a post-doctoral fellowship in health services research at the Harvard School of Public Health.
President and Chief Executive Officer
Frederick P. Cerise, MD, MPH
Parkland Health & Hospital System
Fred Cerise, MD, MPH, has served as President and Chief Executive Officer of Parkland Health & Hospital System since March 2014. He leads one of the largest academic and public safety-net hospitals in the country, as well as 20 community-based clinics and numerous educational outreach programs. The system focuses on serving the comprehensive needs of a largely uninsured population.
Prior to joining Parkland, Dr. Cerise served as Vice President for Health Affairs and Medical Education of the Louisiana State University System. From 2004 to 2007, Dr. Cerise was Secretary of the Louisiana Department of Health and Hospitals.
Prior to that he was the CEO of Earl K. Long Medical Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, where he began his career between 1991 and 2004 as an LSU Clinical Faculty member in Internal Medicine.
Dr. Cerise holds a bachelor’s degree in science from the University of Notre Dame and earned his medical degree at Louisiana State University in New Orleans. He completed a residency in internal medicine at the University of Alabama in Birmingham.
In 2001, he earned a master’s degree in public health from Harvard University School of Public Health. From 2010 to 2016, he served on the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, and he currently serves on the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission, the American Board of Internal Medicine Foundation Board of Trustees, and the Nurse Family Partnership Board of Directors.
Cyrenus G. Darling, Sr., MD, and Cyrenus G. Darling, Jr., MD, Professor of Surgery
Dr. Michael J. Englesbe, MD
University of Michigan
Dr. Englesbe received his undergraduate degree at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, in 1993. He went on to obtain his medical degree in 1997 from the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and completed his general surgery residency at the University of Michigan Health System in 2004. From 2000 to 2002, Dr. Englesbe did a surgical research postdoctoral fellowship at the University of Washington Medical Center in Seattle, Washington. Dr. Englesbe completed a 2-year fellowship in multi-organ transplantation surgery at the University of Michigan in June of 2006. He now serves as the Cyrenus G. Darling, Sr. & Cyrenus G. Darling, Jr. Professor of Surgery.
Dr. Englesbe does both kidney and liver transplantation. His primary clinical focus is pediatric liver transplantation. He started the multidisciplinary pediatric portal hypertension clinic and has significant expertise in the management of portal hypertension and portal vein thrombosis in children and adults. He also does surgery for living kidney donation and dialysis access.
Dr. Englesbe is very involved medical student education. He is Director of the 3rd- and 4th-year medical school curriculum at Michigan. He runs several research programs for students and mentors many students and residents.
Dr. Englesbe has an active research group. The focus is improving the value of surgical care. Key topics of interest include frailty, prehabilitation, opioid use, patient regret, patient-reported outcomes, and surgical appropriateness. He has funding for his work from the National Institutes of Health, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the Substance Use and Mental Health Services Administration, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Michigan.
Chris Fussell, MA
Chris Fussell is a former Navy SEAL Officer and President at McChrystal Group, a premier leadership and management consulting firm founded by General Stanley McChrystal. Fussell leads the company’s Leadership Institute, bringing his background in Special Operations, expertise in cross-functional collaboration, and knowledge sharing experience within large, dispersed organizations.
Fussell was commissioned as a Naval Officer in 1997, and spent the next 15 years on U.S. Navy SEAL teams, leading SEAL elements in combat zones around the globe. From war-torn Kosovo and counter-terrorism operations in Iraq and Afghanistan to highly specialized efforts in the troubled areas of the Arabian Peninsula and North Africa, Fussell experienced the modern evolution of the U.S. military’s Special Operations community from a siloed bureaucracy
struggling to keep up in a turbulent environment into an agile and effective network for counter-terrorism.
In his career as a Navy SEAL, Fussell served first on SEAL Teams Two and Eight, then in the Naval Special Warfare Development Group. During his time on the SEAL teams, he conducted and planned hundreds of operations against high-value targets all around the world. He was then selected to serve as Aide-de-Camp to then-Lieutenant General Stanley McChrystal during General McChrystal’s final year commanding the Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC), where they served a year together in Iraq. As McChrystal’s right-hand man, Fussell was an integral part of team that transformed the Special Operations community into a successful, agile network. He was at the center of the communication and leadership systems that involved thousands of participants sharing information and experiences in real-time, globally.
After returning from Iraq, Fussell sought to explore the academic underpinning and theory behind the shift he had witnessed in warfare. He went on to study Irregular Warfare from the Naval Postgraduate School, earning a master’s degree and receiving the Pat Tillman Award for highest peer-rated Special Operations Officer in the program. His thesis work expanded upon his JSOC experience with fusion cells, focusing on the interagency collaboration and intelligence sharing processes that drove effective, cross-silo collaboration during the peak of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.
In 2012, Fussell left the Naval Special Warfare Development Group to join McChrystal Group. Fussell is also an author of the New York Times bestseller Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement in a Complex World, coauthored with General McChrystal, and is the author of the newly released second book, One Mission: How Leaders Build a Team of Teams. Fussell serves as a Senior Fellow for National Security at New America, is a Fellow and lecturer at Yale’s
Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, and is a lifetime member of the Council on Foreign Relations. He is also actively involved in several nonprofits dedicated to helping veterans and their families and holds a seat on the Board of Directors for the Navy SEAL Foundation.
Chris lives in Washington, D.C., with his wife of 14 years and their two young children.
Director and Health Officer, Detroit Health Department, City of Detroit
Joneigh S. Khaldun, MD, MPH, FACEP
Staff Physician, Department of Emergency Medicine, Henry Ford Hospital
Joneigh S. Khaldun, MD, MPH, FACEP, is the Director and Health Officer for the Detroit Health Department and a practicing emergency physician at Henry Ford Hospital. As Detroit’s chief health strategist, she executes the city’s health agenda through collaborative partnerships, evidence-based programs, and a social justice lens focused on the resilience and strength of Detroiters. Under Dr. Khaldun’s leadership, Detroit launched an 18-month community health assessment, and bridged health systems and public health in an effort to reduce infant mortality and unintended teen pregnancy. She is the driving force behind a proactive strategy to address child lead poisoning, restructuring of the city’s animal welfare services, and several collaborations to tackle the opioid epidemic and violence as a public health issue.
Most recently, Dr. Khaldun was the Chief Medical Officer of the Baltimore City Health Department, where she oversaw seven clinics and focused on robust partnerships to address the opioid epidemic. She has held several other local and national leadership positions, including Director of the Center for Injury Prevention and Control at George Washington University; Founder and Director of the Fellowship in Health Policy in the University of Maryland Department of Emergency Medicine; and Fellow in the Obama administration’s Office of Health Reform, where she worked on implementation of the Affordable Care Act, including the National Prevention Strategy.
Dr. Khaldun obtained her undergraduate degree in biology from the University of Michigan, her MD from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania, and MPH in health policy from George Washington University.
Chief Medical Officer, Press Ganey Associates
Thomas H. Lee, MD, MSc
Editorial Board, The New England Journal of Medicine; Leadership Board Founder, NEJM Catalyst
Dr. Thomas Lee is Chief Medical Officer of Press Ganey, and an internist and cardiologist, who practices at Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. He is a Professor of Medicine, part time, at Harvard Medical School and Professor of Health Policy and Management at the Harvard School of Public Health. Prior to joining Press Ganey, he served as Network President for Partners Healthcare System and CEO for Partners Community HealthCare, Inc., the integrated delivery system founded by Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Massachusetts General Hospital.
He is a member of the Board of Directors of Geisinger Health System, and Chairman of the Board of Directors for Geisinger Health Plan. He is also a member of the Board of Directors of Health Leads; the Board of Overseers of Weill Cornell Medical College; the Special Medical Advisory Group (SMAG) of the Veterans Administration; and the Panel of Health Advisors of the Congressional Budget Office. He is a member of the Editorial Board of the New England Journal of Medicine.
He is the author of more than 260 academic articles and three books, Chaos and Organization in Health Care, Eugene Braunwald and the Rise of Modern Medicine, and An Epidemic of Empathy in Healthcare.
Named in his honor, the Thomas H. Lee Award for Excellence in Primary Care is given each year to recognize a primary care physician at Brigham and Women’s Hospital who meets the needs of his or her patients exceptionally well.
Tom holds a bachelor’s degree in history and science from Harvard College, a medical degree from Cornell University Medical College, and a master’s degree in epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health. He lives in Milton, Massachusetts, with his wife, Dr. Soheyla Gharib, who is Chief of Medicine at Harvard University Health Services. The couple has three daughters.
Clinical Editor, NEJM Catalyst
Namita Seth Mohta, MD
Center for Healthcare Delivery Sciences, Brigham and Women's Hospital
Namita Seth Mohta, MD is the Clinical Editor for NEJM Catalyst, a new venture launched by the New England Journal of Medicine/NEJM Group to advance the dialogue amongst leaders to drive innovations in health care delivery. As a key member of the leadership team, she has responsibility for editorial strategy and content quality. Dr. Mohta is the Clinical Lead for the ACO at The New England Quality Care Alliance Physicians Organization affiliated with Tufts Medical Center. She works with the network to define strategy, implement system-wide clinical initiatives, and develop analytic tools to successfully improve outcomes.
Prior to these roles, Dr. Mohta served as the Medical Director for Population Health Management at Partners Health Care. There she was a part of the initial leadership team responsible for the development and implementation of innovative, Partners-wide programs to successfully improve quality of care, and lower costs for the populations they served under alternative payment contracts such as the Medicare Pioneer Accountable Care Organization.
Her responsibilities included implementation of Partners’ primary care strategy to evolve practices towards Patient-Centered Medical Homes as well as the care management program for their most medically complex, high risk patients. Dr. Mohta was the clinical lead for Partners’ strategy to improve care for the often vulnerable, Medicaid population. Prior to this role, Dr. Mohta was Clinical Director of Partners Business Planning, responsible for system-level, clinical strategy projects. She also has industry experience as a management consultant with the Boston Consulting Group.
Dr. Mohta practices as a Hospitalist at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) in Boston, MA and attends on the academic teaching service. Her clinical interests include improving end-of-life care in the inpatient setting. Academically, she is faculty at the Center for Healthcare Delivery Sciences at BWH and at Harvard Medical School. She completed her Internal Medicine and Primary Care residency training at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Dr. Mohta is a graduate of Yale College and Yale School of Medicine.
Director, Center for Musculoskeletal Care at Yale School of Medicine and Yale New Haven Health
Mary I. O'Connor, MD
Professor of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation, Yale School of Medicine
In May of 2015, Dr. O’Connor became the inaugural Director of the Center for Musculoskeletal Care at Yale School of Medicine and Yale New Haven Health, leading the creation of a new value- and patient-focused model of care delivery in an academic medical setting. She is Professor of Orthopedics and Rehabilitation at Yale School of Medicine.
Dr. O’Connor received her MD from Drexel University in Philadelphia and completed her orthopedic residency and fellowship at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. She practiced at Mayo Clinic in Florida until 2015, during which time she served as the enterprise-wide Medical Director of Compliance, Chair of the Department of Orthopedic Surgery, Associate Medical Director for Development, Associate Dean for Surgery Education, and member of the Executive Operations Team.
Dr. O’Connor has published extensively in high-impact, peer-reviewed journals on limb salvage in orthopedic tumor surgery, sex and gender differences in arthritis and joint replacement, and use of bone marrow aspirate for treating knee arthritis. Current research focuses on tele-rehabilitation and improved outcomes for fragility hip fracture patients.
Dr. O’Connor was the first female member of numerous orthopedic professional societies and past President of the International Society of Limb Salvage, Association of Bone and Joint Surgeons, American Association of Hip and Knee Surgeons, Musculoskeletal Tumor Society, and the Ruth Jackson Orthopedic Society. She is past Chair of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons’ Women’s Health Issues Advisory Board and Diversity Advisory Board. She has served as the Chair of the Movement Is Life Caucus since its founding in 2010, a multi-stakeholder group committed to decreasing health care disparities.
Dr. O’Connor has received numerous awards and honors, including being named Distinguished Clinician at Mayo Clinic and receiving the Corinne Farrell Award from the International Skeletal Society. She received the Congressional Gold Medal as a 1980 Olympian.
Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs, University of Michigan
Marschall S. Runge, MD, PhD
Dean, University of Michigan Medical School; Chief Executive Officer, Michigan Medicine
Marshall S. Runge, MD, PhD, is Executive Vice President for Medical Affairs at the University of Michigan, Dean of the Medical School, and CEO of Michigan Medicine. Prior to joining the University of Michigan in March 2015, he was Executive Dean and Chair of the Department of Medicine at the UNC School of Medicine, where he was instrumental in guiding the academic and clinical leadership of the School of Medicine and the UNC Health Care System. He was also Principal Investigator and Director of the North Carolina Translational and Clinical Sciences (NC TraCS) Institute at UNC-Chapel Hill. He was elected to the Board of Directors of Eli Lilly and Company in 2013.
Before joining the UNC faculty in 2000, Dr. Runge held the John Sealy Distinguished Chair in Internal Medicine and was Director of the Division of Cardiology and the Sealy Center for Molecular Cardiology at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston.
Dr. Runge earned his doctorate in molecular biology at Vanderbilt University and his medical degree from Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, where he also completed a residency in internal medicine. He was a cardiology fellow and faculty member at Harvard’s Massachusetts General Hospital before joining Emory University as Associate Professor of Medicine in 1989. Dr. Runge has been a physician-scientist for his entire career, combining basic and translational research with the care of patients with cardiovascular diseases and education. He is the author of over 200 publications in the field and holds five patents for novel approaches to health care.
Chief of Medicine, VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System
Sanjay Saint, MD, MPH
George Dock Professor of Internal Medicine, University of Michigan
Sanjay Saint, MD, MPH, is the Chief of Medicine at the VA Ann Arbor Healthcare System and the George Dock Professor of Internal Medicine at the University of Michigan.
His research focuses on patient safety, implementation science, and medical decision-making. He has authored approximately 330 peer-reviewed papers, with over 100 appearing in the New England Journal of Medicine, JAMA, The Lancet, or the Annals of Internal Medicine. He serves on the editorial board of seven peer-reviewed journals, including the Annals of Internal Medicine, is a Special Correspondent to the New England Journal of Medicine, and is an elected member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the Association of American Physicians.
He has written for The Wall Street Journal and Harvard Business Review, and gave a 2016 TED talk on culture change in health care that has over 1 million views. He has co-authored two books published by Oxford University Press: Preventing Hospital Infections: Real-World Problems, Realistic Solutions and Teaching Inpatient Medicine: What Every Physician Needs to Know. In 2017, he was awarded the HSR&D Health System Impact Award from the Department of Veterans Affairs, and the Distinguished Mentor Award from the University of Michigan Institute for Clinical & Health Research. In 2016, he received the Mark Wolcott Award from the Department of Veterans Affairs as the National VA Physician of the Year and was elected as an international honorary Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians (London).
He received his medical doctorate from UCLA, completed a medical residency and chief residency at the University of California at San Francisco, and obtained a master’s degree in public health (as a Robert Wood Johnson Clinical Scholar) from the University of Washington in Seattle. He has been a visiting professor at over 100 universities and hospitals in the United States, Europe, and Asia, and has active research studies underway with investigators in Switzerland, Italy, Japan, and Thailand.
Medical Director, Professionalism and Peer Support
Stephen Swensen, MD, MMM, FACR
Dr. Swensen is dedicated to the development of thoughtful leaders who have the capability to nurture camaraderie and joy in work. He is a recognized, well-published expert in professional burnout.
He serves as the Medical Director for Professionalism and Peer Support at Intermountain Healthcare and as a Senior Fellow of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, where he co-leads their Joy in Work Initiative.
In the preceding three decades he served patients at the Mayo Clinic. As Director for Leadership and Organization Development, he co-led professional burnout work and oversaw the development of 4,100 physicians and scientists. As Director for Quality, Dr. Swensen established the Quality Academy and the Value Creation System. More than 37,000 colleagues were certified Quality Fellows during his tenure.
While Chair of the Department of Radiology, his leadership team used Lean-Sigma and Baldrige to create value for patients provided by 1,200 staff who performed more than 1 million exams annually.
A full professor, he has been Principal Investigator of two NIH Grants and has authored two books and 167 peer-reviewed articles. He was honored with the Diamond Quality Fellow Lifetime Achievement Award.
Swensen has served as Director on two boards and as a member of the Mayo Clinic Management Team. During the two past decades, he has started three businesses.
He holds a master’s degree in medical management from Carnegie Mellon University’s Heinz School and is a trained executive coach. He received his MD from the University of Wisconsin. His residency training was at the Mayo Clinic and his thoracic radiology fellowship at Harvard Medical School, Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
Swensen served as President of two international groups: the Fleischner Society and the Society of Thoracic Radiology. He founded the Big Sky Group and the Sun Valley Roundtable.
Swensen has been married for 40 years, has two children, and has run or cross-country skied 39 marathons.
Senior Vice President, Community Health & Equity and Chief Wellness & Diversity Officer
Kimberlydawn Wisdom, MD, MS
Henry Ford Health System
Kimberlydawn Wisdom, MD, MS, is Senior Vice President of Community Health & Equity, and Chief Wellness and Diversity Officer at Detroit’s Henry Ford Health System. She is a board-certified emergency medicine physician; Chair of the Gail and Lois Warden Endowment on Multicultural Health; and the nation’s first state-level Surgeon General. In 2012, she was appointed by President Obama to serve on the Advisory Group on Prevention, Health Promotion, and Integrative and Public Health.
She focuses on health care equity, infant mortality/maternal and child health, chronic disease, physical inactivity, unhealthy eating habits, and tobacco use. Dr. Wisdom provides strong leadership in diversity, population health, and improving the health of those disproportionately affected by poor health outcomes.
Dr. Wisdom founded the award-winning African American Initiative for Male Health Improvement (AIM–HI) and the Women Inspired Neighborhood (WIN) Network: Detroit to reduce infant mortality. She leads equity strategies at Henry Ford, honored by the American Hospital Association in July 2014 as an Equity of Care Finalist. As Michigan Surgeon General, she founded the nationally known Generation With Promise program — a youth leadership and empowerment effort now housed at Henry Ford that has engaged thousands of Michigan students and families to drive policy, environment, and behavioral change on nutrition and physical activity, as well as tobacco prevention.
A recipient of numerous awards, Dr. Wisdom has authored several peer-reviewed publications, appeared on national television, including on ABC’s Nightline, and has presented to audiences across the country and internationally.