Michigan Medicine Alumni Receive 2021 Distinguished Awards

John M. Carethers

John M. Carethers, M.D. (Fellowship 1995), the John G. Searle Professor of Internal Medicine and chair of the department, received the MMAS 2021 Distinguished Basic Science Research Award. Before joining the Michigan Medicine faculty, he grew his laboratory-based research on DNA mismatch repair and colorectal cancer pathogenesis in San Diego and served as the main physician for hereditary colon cancer referrals in Southern California. He also has an interest in colorectal cancer disparities in genetics and outcomes and has published more than 200 manuscripts and book chapters. He was elected a member of the American Society for Clinical Investigation and the American Association of Physicians (AAP), and he served as president of AAP. He was elected a member of the National Academy of Medicine and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He received the Robert H. Williams, M.D. Distinguished Chair of Medicine Award from the Association of Professors of Medicine, a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Collaborative Group of the Americas on Inherited Colorectal Cancer, and the Harriet P. Dustan Award for Science as Related to Medicine from the American College of Physicians. He is currently vice president of the American Gastroenterological Association and will be president in 2022.


Jennifer Kim

Jennifer Kim (M.D. 1995, Residency 2000, Fellowship 2001), clinical professor of otolaryngology-head and neck surgery and co-director of the Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Fellowship, received the MMAS 2021 Distinguished Humanitarian Award. She joined the Michigan Medicine faculty in 2002 and has since established a multidisciplinary facial nerve disorders clinic and microtia clinic. Since 2007, she has returned annually on surgery missions to Guatemala, Peru, and Vietnam to perform microtia reconstructions and teach local surgeons advanced surgical techniques. She also helps train otolaryngology residents and faculty in Haiti and Ecuador in facial plastic and reconstructive surgery.


James knol
James A. Knol

James A. Knol (M.D. 1974, Residency 1980), professor emeritus of surgery, received the MMAS 2021 Distinguished Service Award. He joined the Michigan Medicine Department of Surgery in 1980 as an instructor at Wayne County General Hospital, which was part of the U-M Medical School residency at that time. He did research in the animal laboratory at the Ann Arbor Veterans Administration Hospital (VA) on pancreatitis and pancreatic blood flow. He joined the Michigan Medicine faculty in 1982, and he worked primarily at the VA until 1987, when he transferred to the GI Surgery Service at University Hospital. His research interests transitioned to pharmacodynamics of chemotherapy agents used in GI tumors. From the early 1990s until his retirement in 2020, his focus was mostly on teaching complex operations and patient care to residents and teaching medical students on rotation in the Hepatopancreatobiliary and Advanced GI Surgery Service.


Renée A. Shellhaas

Renée A. Shellhaas (M.D. 2001, M.S. 2009), clinical professor of pediatrics, research director for the Division of Pediatric Neurology, and director of career development for the Department of Pediatrics, received the MMAS 2021 Distinguished Early Career Award. After joining the Michigan Medicine faculty in 2007, she completed a master's degree at the U-M School of Public Health in clinical research design and statistical analysis. Her work on neonatal seizures includes discoveries regarding the genetic basis of neonatal epilepsies and the optimal treatment duration after acute symptomatic neonatal seizures. She also has done collaborative work on early-life epilepsies and established herself as an expert on neonatal sleep research — with a multidisciplinary team of members from six departments. She leads a National Institutes of Health-funded multicenter study of sleep-disordered breathing among infants who have myelomeningocele and currently serves as associate editor for the journal Neurology.


Tadataka Yamada

Tadataka Yamada, M.D. (Sc.D.Hon. 2015), a venture partner with Frazier Healthcare Partners, received the Michigan Medicine Alumni Society (MMAS) 2021 Distinguished Achievement Award. Yamada has served in numerous prestigious positions, including president of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Global Health Program, where he oversaw grants totaling over $9 billion in programs directed at applying technologies to address major health challenges of the developing world. He has written more than 150 manuscripts on gastroenterology, and he is a member of the National Academy of Medicine (U.S.) and the National Academy of Medicine (Mexico), as well as a fellow in the Academy of Medical Sciences (UK) and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Yamada also was chief of the Division of Gastroenterology and chair of the Department of Internal Medicine at Michigan Medicine. He has received numerous awards and recognitions, including Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, the Honorary Citizen Award from Singapore, and the Order of the Rising Sun, Gold and Silver Stars from Japan. He has served as president of the Association of American Physicians and of the American Gastroenterological Association and as a member of the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology. He is currently a member of the board of directors of the Clinton Health Access Initiative and U-M Health.

Featured News & Stories Toddler Martina smiling.
Philanthropy News
Rallying Together to Support Childhood Cancer Awareness and Research
September is National Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, a time to recognize the impact of pediatric cancer and highlight the importance of research and patient programs.
blood pressure cuff on mans arm with white coat doctor taking it
Health Lab
Blood pressure high for years? Beware of stroke risk
A study led by Michigan Medicine narrows in on the cumulative effects of years of high systolic blood pressure — the top number on the blood pressure reading and how hard the heart pumps blood to the arteries — finding that a higher average reading during adulthood is linked with a greater risk for the two most common types of stroke.
News Release
Amy Kilbourne named U.S. VA Executive Director of Health Systems Research
Amy Kilbourne, PhD, MPH, Associate Chair for Research and Professor of Learning Health Sciences at U-M Medical School has been appointed Executive Director of Health Systems Research for the U.S.  Department of Veterans Affairs Health System, effective June 30, 2024.
medical campus aerial
News Release
Michigan Medicine notifies patients of health information breach
Michigan Medicine is notifying approximately 56,953 individuals about employee email accounts that were compromised, potentially exposing some patient health information.
Text reading "20+ Top-Ranked Residency Programs" next to an image of Michigan Medicine buildings
News Release
U-M has 14 top 10 medical education programs in latest Doximity Residency Navigator
The 2024-25 Doximity Residency Navigator has been released. It shows that U-M has six top 5 medical education programs, with nine more in the top 10 and another nine in the top 25.
iv chemo bags
Health Lab
Drug-chemo combo increases cancer treatment efficacy
A study finds giving a fatty acid inhibitor alongside chemotherapy could improve the treatment efficacy for patients with brain metastases from triple negative breast cancer