Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine | Nutley, NJ | Executive Cabinet   

Executive Cabinet

Jeffrey R. Boscamp, M.D.

Dean Jeffrey Boscamp

Dean, Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine

Dr. Jeffrey Boscamp was appointed the dean of the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine (HMSOM) on December 9, 2022. Prior to that he had served as interim dean since January 2022.

Dr. Boscamp previously served Hackensack Meridian Health (HMH) as co-chief academic officer (CAO). As co-CAO of HMH and interim dean of HMSOM, Dr. Boscamp developed, promoted and organized programs at Hackensack Meridian Health and the School of Medicine to promote lifelong learning across the continuum of undergraduate medical education, graduate medical education and continuing medical education.

Prior to becoming interim dean, Dr. Boscamp served as vice dean. He is a professor of pediatrics at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. A longstanding and highly-regarded leader at Hackensack University Medical Center, he also served as a member of the Hackensack University Medical Center Medical Executive Committee and continues to serve on the Hackensack Meridian Health Board of Trustees Academics Committee.

Dr. Jeffrey Boscamp was appointed the dean of the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine (HMSOM) on December 9, 2022. Prior to that he had served as interim dean since January 2022.

Dr. Boscamp previously served Hackensack Meridian Health (HMH) as co-chief academic officer (CAO). As co-CAO of HMH and interim dean of HMSOM, Dr. Boscamp developed, promoted and organized programs at Hackensack Meridian Health and the School of Medicine to promote lifelong learning across the continuum of undergraduate medical education, graduate medical education and continuing medical education.

Prior to becoming interim dean, Dr. Boscamp served as vice dean. He is a professor of pediatrics at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. A longstanding and highly-regarded leader at Hackensack University Medical Center, he also served as a member of the Hackensack University Medical Center Medical Executive Committee and continues to serve on the Hackensack Meridian Health Board of Trustees Academics Committee.

Dr. Boscamp joined the then Hackensack Medical Center in 1987. He founded the Section of Pediatric Infectious Diseases and the Steven Bader Immunologic Institute and provided essential pediatric infectious diseases support to the Tomorrow’s Children’s Institute, the largest pediatric hematology-oncology program in the state of New Jersey.

Dr. Boscamp joined the then Hackensack Medical Center in 1987. He founded the Section of Pediatric Infectious Diseases and the Steven Bader Immunologic Institute and provided essential pediatric infectious diseases support to the Tomorrow’s Children’s Institute, the largest pediatric hematology-oncology program in the state of New Jersey.

Dr. Boscamp was the chairman of the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital and held the Marvin I. Gottlieb, M.D., Ph.D., Endowed Chair of Pediatrics for 14 years. During his tenure the Children’s Hospital achieved meteoric growth and achieved full voting membership in the National Association of Children’s Hospitals (NACHRI). Dr. Boscamp helped lead the design and building of a free standing Children’s Hospital on the campus of Hackensack University Medical Center and developed and recruited a faculty practice of pediatric subspecialists. Under Dr. Boscamp, the Joseph M. Sanzari Children’s Hospital achieved a national top 50 ranking in U.S. News and World Report; the first Hackensack Meridian program to achieve this as well as the first children’s hospital in New Jersey to be ranked in the top 50 nationally.

Dr. Boscamp assumed the role of chief academic officer and Designated Institutional Official (DIO) at Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC) in 2013.

Dr. Boscamp achieved Accreditation Council of Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) accreditation for new residencies at HUMC in pediatrics, internal medicine, urology, obstetrics and gynecology, surgery and orthopedics as well as many new fellowships in internal medicine and pediatrics. He also transitioned five programs at Palisades Medical Center from American Osteopathic Association (AOA) accreditation to full accreditation by the ACGME.

Dr. Boscamp was integrally involved with the founding of the school of medicine since the concept of starting a school was discussed. He co-chaired the search committee that brought founding dean Bonita Stanton to the school.

At the School of Medicine he is the course co-Director for a major first year basic science course: Immunity, Infection and Cancer (I2C). In March 2020, with covid overwhelming the clinical services of HMH, Dr. Boscamp selected 8 medical students to be embedded in these clinical services to research emerging information on the epidemiology, disease manifestations and treatments of Covid-19. The students produced 70 papers in 6 weeks and the details of this innovative “pop-up” course were published in Academic Medicine. He also teaches a very popular wine appreciation course (with a set curriculum and textbook).

He represents the SOM on the national level as a member of the Josiah Macy sponsored Consortium of Accelerated Medical Pathway Programs (schools of medicine that have 3-year graduation programs) and is a member of the American Association of Medical College’s (AAMC) Council of Deans. Dr. Boscamp led the design and implementation of the innovative accelerated medical education program (phase 3-residency) that allows a medical student to graduate in three years and likely move to a Hackensack Meridian Health residency program. He continues to guide that program as part of his work to create a seamless transition from undergraduate medical education to graduate medical education.

In addition, Dr. Boscamp was Chairman of the NJ Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), Committee on Infectious Diseases and a member of the executive committee of that organization. He was appointed by Governor Christie Todd Whitman as a member of the Catastrophic Illness in Children Relief Fund Commission and was an advisor to Governor Jon Corzine in the H1N1 Influenza outbreak in 2009. He is a fellow of the AAP and the Pediatric Infectious Diseases Society and a member of the Infectious Diseases Society of America, the Infectious Diseases Society of New Jersey, and the American Society for Microbiology. Dr. Boscamp is board-certified in pediatric infectious diseases, is a member of Alpha Omega Alpha, and was the recipient of the Lawrence B. Slobody Prize at New York Medical College awarded to the outstanding pediatric student in their medical school class. He received the Outstanding Teacher Award in Pediatrics at Morristown Memorial Hospital, and was recognized with the Attending of the Year Award in the Department of Pediatrics at the UMDNJ (Now Rutgers)-New Jersey Medical School.

Dr. Boscamp has been an invited speaker at more than 175 CME programs.

Dr. Boscamp received his B.A. from Williams College (Williamstown, MA) and his M.D. from New York Medical College (New York, NY). He was a research associate at Harvard Medical School (Boston, MA) and did his pediatric residency at Babies Hospital, Columbia Presbyterian Medical Center (New York, NY). After completing pediatric training, he was a resident in internal medicine at Yale University School of Medicine, Greenwich Hospital (Connecticut). He subsequently completed a fellowship in adult and pediatric infectious diseases at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine (Bronx, NY).

Naomi Ambalu, D.O.

Naomi AmbaluAssistant Dean, Student Affairs and Wellbeing

Dr. Naomi Ambalu is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. Prior to joining the Office of Student Affairs and Wellbeing, she was the psychiatry clerkship director and Neuroscience and Behavior course co-director at HMSOM. She has served on multiple committees including curriculum development committees, admissions committee, and the SAMHSA Grant Project Team, in which she organized and facilitated the clinical immersion program for medical students, physician assistant students, and nurse practitioner students.

Her interests include medical student wellbeing and professional development. Dr. Ambalu has worked on the design and development of a course aimed at improving medical student financial literacy. She is engaged in research which studies topics related to medical trainee wellbeing. She has also worked on the development of the Humanism domain as part of the Professional Identity Formation framework.

Dr. Naomi Ambalu is an assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. Prior to joining the Office of Student Affairs and Wellbeing, she was the psychiatry clerkship director and Neuroscience and Behavior course co-director at HMSOM. She has served on multiple committees including curriculum development committees, admissions committee, and the SAMHSA Grant Project Team, in which she organized and facilitated the clinical immersion program for medical students, physician assistant students, and nurse practitioner students.

Her interests include medical student wellbeing and professional development. Dr. Ambalu has worked on the design and development of a course aimed at improving medical student financial literacy. She is engaged in research which studies topics related to medical trainee wellbeing. She has also worked on the development of the Humanism domain as part of the Professional Identity Formation framework.

Dr. Ambalu received a Bachelor of Arts in Biology from Binghamton University in Binghamton, NY. She received her medical degree from New York College of Osteopathic Medicine in Old Westbury, NY. She completed her psychiatry residency training and child and adolescent psychiatry fellowship training at Rutgers – Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway, NJ. She is board certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology in general and child and adolescent psychiatry.

Dr. Ambalu’s values include collaboration, life-long learning, humanism, and excellence. She believes the best results are achieved when the team works together to imagine, create, and implement. Being a lifelong learner is essential to success, and excellence can only be achieved with collaboration, growth, and trust. Her career in medical education consists of the above features that she utilizes in herself daily in order to provide our medical students and faculty with the best experience possible, from learning to teaching, and ultimately growing together.

Katharine Clouser, M.D.

Katharine ClouserAssistant Dean, Admissions

Dr. Katharine Clouser, assistant professor at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, has served as the chair of the admissions committee since 2020. She served on planning committees and curriculum development committees since the inception of the school in 2016. She also served as Associate Program Director for the Pediatrics Residency at Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School as well as Hackensack University Medical Center, and as Clerkship Director for the Pediatrics Clerkship at HMSOM.

As a board certified Pediatric Hospitalist, her clinical interests include the care of acutely ill children. She is also a board certified Physician Advisor, working with utilization management and clinical documentation. She has developed educational initiatives for residents and students regarding business of medicine and has championed a board review curriculum for Pediatric Residents.

Dr. Katharine Clouser, assistant professor at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, has served as the chair of the admissions committee since 2020. She served on planning committees and curriculum development committees since the inception of the school in 2016. She also served as Associate Program Director for the Pediatrics Residency at Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School as well as Hackensack University Medical Center, and as Clerkship Director for the Pediatrics Clerkship at HMSOM.

As a board certified Pediatric Hospitalist, her clinical interests include the care of acutely ill children. She is also a board certified Physician Advisor, working with utilization management and clinical documentation. She has developed educational initiatives for residents and students regarding business of medicine and has championed a board review curriculum for Pediatric Residents.

Dr. Clouser has been published in multiple peer reviewed journals on a variety of topics including acutely ill children, pediatric resident education, and social determinants of health. She has presented at numerous national and local meetings and has served on the executive committee of the New Jersey Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico, Dr. Clouser received her Doctor of Medicine from the University of New Mexico. She graduated from Seton Hall University with a degree in Chemistry and Spanish. She completed her pediatric residency at Rutgers-New Jersey Medical School where she also served as a chief resident.

Lindsey Dedow, Psy.D.

Lindsey Dedow

Assistant Dean, Advising and Career Development

Dr. Lindsey Dedow joined the School of Medicine in 2018 as the inaugural Advisor and became the founding Director of the Advising and Career Development program in 2019. She has over 25 years of experience supporting student success in higher education, from her initial post-doctoral positions in university counseling centers to her more recent work advising high-achieving students at the Macaulay Honors College at CUNY Queens College.

Dr. Dedow has been developing innovative higher education programs throughout her career and has presented at national and regional conferences on various topics in advising program development and mindfulness. She had a presentation selected as Best of Region by the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA); and her creation of the Transfer Student Advising Program at the University of Florida won an Outstanding Program award from NACADA.

Dr. Lindsey Dedow joined the School of Medicine in 2018 as the inaugural Advisor and became the founding Director of the Advising and Career Development program in 2019. She has over 25 years of experience supporting student success in higher education, from her initial post-doctoral positions in university counseling centers to her more recent work advising high-achieving students at the Macaulay Honors College at CUNY Queens College.

Dr. Dedow has been developing innovative higher education programs throughout her career and has presented at national and regional conferences on various topics in advising program development and mindfulness. She had a presentation selected as Best of Region by the National Academic Advising Association (NACADA); and her creation of the Transfer Student Advising Program at the University of Florida won an Outstanding Program award from NACADA.

Dr. Dedow completed training to teach mindfulness to emerging adults via the Koru curriculum created at Duke University and has taught Koru classes to students, faculty, and staff at HMSOM. She continues to work on strengthening her personal mindfulness practice and integrates this into her work with students. She believes in the concept of “Advising is Teaching” and is looking forward to conducting research into the outcomes of the advising program and the Individualized Learning Plan process.

Dr. Dedow is a first-generation college graduate who immigrated to the United States from England when she was 8 years old. She earned her BA in Psychology with honors from the University of Central Florida, then earned her Psy.D. in clinical psychology from the University of Denver, followed by a postdoctoral fellowship at the counseling center of New College of Florida.

Michael Giuliano M.D., M.Ed., M.H.P.E., M.A.

Michael GiulianoAssistant Dean of Faculty, Resident, & Student Development

Dr. Michael Giuliano joined the School of Medicine from his position as Director of Neonatology at Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC) and the former Assistant Dean for Resident Development at SUNY Downstate. He brings over 35 years of medical educational experience to the school of medicine, having been involved in curriculum reform in three previous schools. He continues his clinical teaching roles at HUMC for medical student and residents, along with his involvement in the GMEC/Academic Affairs & Ethics Committees, and his research interests in medical education and diagnostic reasoning.

Dr. Giuliano had served as the Director of Neonatology at HUMC for 15 years, dramatically expanding the educational, quality improvement and clinical programs in the NICU. Under his leadership the NICU doubled its clinical census and developed nine permanent continuous quality improvement teams. Dr. Giuliano has been instrumental in making HUMC a leader in the formation of a New Jersey Statewide NICU Collaborative and a critical part of the National Vermont Oxford Collaborative. The NICU has also become a center of medical education, developing new programs for rotating third year medical students, residents, APN students and Neonatal Fellows.

Dr. Michael Giuliano joined the School of Medicine from his position as Director of Neonatology at Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC) and the former Assistant Dean for Resident Development at SUNY Downstate. He brings over 35 years of medical educational experience to the school of medicine, having been involved in curriculum reform in three previous schools. He continues his clinical teaching roles at HUMC for medical student and residents, along with his involvement in the GMEC/Academic Affairs & Ethics Committees, and his research interests in medical education and diagnostic reasoning.

Dr. Giuliano had served as the Director of Neonatology at HUMC for 15 years, dramatically expanding the educational, quality improvement and clinical programs in the NICU. Under his leadership the NICU doubled its clinical census and developed nine permanent continuous quality improvement teams. Dr. Giuliano has been instrumental in making HUMC a leader in the formation of a New Jersey Statewide NICU Collaborative and a critical part of the National Vermont Oxford Collaborative. The NICU has also become a center of medical education, developing new programs for rotating third year medical students, residents, APN students and Neonatal Fellows.

Dr. Giuliano received his BS degree summa cum laude from SUNY Albany and his MD from SUNY Downstate. He spent the next thirteen years in the Cornell system as a pediatric resident, neonatal fellow, founding Director of Neonatology at Englewood Hospital and then the Vice Chair of Pediatrics at Lenox Hill Hospital. He has directed site clerkships and residency programs throughout his career. Dr. Giuliano continued his formal education, receiving a Masters in Elementary Education at St. Peters College in 2000 and a Masters in Health Professional Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago in 2008. Ever the student, he also completed his Masters in Theology at Seton Hall University in 2016, just as the medical school was being born.

Dr. Giuliano has research interests in the neonatal immune systems response to infection, but his primary focus has been medical education. He has developed an embedded model of “resident as teacher” program that has been utilized in several institutions. He has also developed a novel third year clerkship curriculum for students rotating in the NICU. As an active member of the Council on Medical Student Education in Pediatrics (COMSEP) since 1997, he has played an active role in revising the national pediatric clerkship curriculum in 2000 and 2005. His current work is focused on developing students, residents and faculty into lifelong learners and excellent teachers.

His previous work as an Assistant Dean for Resident Development at SUNY Downstate from 2006-2011, coupled with his experience with curriculum reform at three different medical schools, has made Dr. Giuliano a significant contributor to the development of the new medical school. He is an original member of the Executive Cabinet and currently oversees development programs that extend across the entire curriculum and into the entire Hackensack Meridian Network. Dr. Giuliano also brings a unique perspective on spirituality in medicine as an ordained permanent Deacon in the Catholic Church.

Zhiyong Han, Ph.D.

Zhiyong HanAssistant Dean of Research, Professor of Medical Sciences

Dr. Han brings a wealth of expertise and experience to the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. His impressive portfolio is the result of decades of substantial contributions to biomedical research, medical education research, pedagogical innovation, and curriculum enhancement. Recognized for his aptitude in envisioning and developing research programs, Dr. Han fosters a vibrant learning environment for a diverse cadre of medical and graduate students.

With extensive training in Biochemistry, Cell Biology, and Molecular Biology, Dr. Han's knowledge encompasses a broad spectrum of biomedical disciplines. He has consistently demonstrated a keen interest in investigating the genetic foundations of differential cancer responses to various anti-cancer drugs and acquiring a deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying cancer cells' drug resistance. His work also explores the creation of innovative anti-cancer drugs, which draw inspiration from the chemical structures of natural compounds. Notably, Dr. Han's innovative research earned him a US patent for a potential anti-cancer drug that he co-developed.

Dr. Han brings a wealth of expertise and experience to the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. His impressive portfolio is the result of decades of substantial contributions to biomedical research, medical education research, pedagogical innovation, and curriculum enhancement. Recognized for his aptitude in envisioning and developing research programs, Dr. Han fosters a vibrant learning environment for a diverse cadre of medical and graduate students.

With extensive training in Biochemistry, Cell Biology, and Molecular Biology, Dr. Han's knowledge encompasses a broad spectrum of biomedical disciplines. He has consistently demonstrated a keen interest in investigating the genetic foundations of differential cancer responses to various anti-cancer drugs and acquiring a deeper understanding of the molecular mechanisms underlying cancer cells' drug resistance. His work also explores the creation of innovative anti-cancer drugs, which draw inspiration from the chemical structures of natural compounds. Notably, Dr. Han's innovative research earned him a US patent for a potential anti-cancer drug that he co-developed.

Beyond cancer, Dr. Han's investigative pursuits delve into the realms of neurogenesis, human and animal behavior, and the impact of vitamin D deficiency on gastrointestinal disorders. Recently, he turned his attention to One Health and the implications of climate change on human health, aiming to develop relevant teaching material for medical students.

Dr. Han has an impressive record of over sixty research publications and presentations at regional, national, and international forums. His published works not only cover scientific discoveries but also extend to the pedagogy and learning of medical science. Dr. Han has mentored many medical students in research, which underlines his unwavering commitment to advancing medical education. Central to his mission is the goal of equipping physicians with the ability to incorporate evidence-based medicine into their practice.

Dr. Han's love for research and teaching finds resonance in the classroom, leaving an impressive mark on his distinguished career as a medical science educator. His excellence in teaching has earned him a collection of prestigious awards and recognition from both students and faculty alike.

Dr. Han receiving a B.A. in Plant Physiology from Lanzhou University, China, and his Ph.D. from The Graduate School of The City University of New York. Further honing his expertise, he obtained postdoctoral training in the Department of Molecular Biology, Cell Biology, and Biochemistry at Brown University.

Miriam Hoffman, M.D.

Miriam HoffmanVice Dean for Academic Affairs

Dr. Miriam Hoffman was the founding Associate Dean of Medical Education at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine and is currently the Vice Dean for Academic Affairs. She has led the development, implementation, and continuous enhancement of the medical education program. Dr. Hoffman’s goal is to align medical education curricula with the health outcomes of populations and individuals, including addressing health inequities. The SOM curriculum utilizes the Determinants of Health – all the factors that impact health outcomes – as the frame for the entire curriculum.

Dr. Hoffman has built and leads the largest unit within the School of Medicine, which includes Curriculum Design and Delivery, Assessment and Institutional Effectiveness, Community Programs, Medical Education Research and Scholarship, and Clinical Skills. She has built partnerships and collaborations with diverse stakeholders and constituencies within the school, university, health system, and regional community.

Dr. Miriam Hoffman was the founding Associate Dean of Medical Education at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine and is currently the Vice Dean for Academic Affairs. She has led the development, implementation, and continuous enhancement of the medical education program. Dr. Hoffman’s goal is to align medical education curricula with the health outcomes of populations and individuals, including addressing health inequities. The SOM curriculum utilizes the Determinants of Health – all the factors that impact health outcomes – as the frame for the entire curriculum.

Dr. Hoffman has built and leads the largest unit within the School of Medicine, which includes Curriculum Design and Delivery, Assessment and Institutional Effectiveness, Community Programs, Medical Education Research and Scholarship, and Clinical Skills. She has built partnerships and collaborations with diverse stakeholders and constituencies within the school, university, health system, and regional community.

Previously, she was at the Boston University School of Medicine for 13 years. There, Dr. Hoffman was the chair of the Clerkship Curriculum Subcommittee and served as a member of many education and leadership committees. Dr. Hoffman has been a leader in curriculum development and faculty development in evidence-based medicine (EBM) and clinical teaching.

Dr. Hoffman has spent her clinical career working with patients from diverse backgrounds in underserved settings, including safety net hospitals and Community Health Centers. Dr. Hoffman completed her undergraduate education at the Johns Hopkins University, received her medical degree from Cornell University Medical College, and completed her residency at the New York Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Family Medicine Residency Program, where she was also Chief Resident.

Dr. Hoffman’s emphasis on health outcomes and health equity includes a focus on Information Mastery – providing evidence-based care in real time at the point-of-care, with a focus on patient-oriented outcomes. She has developed curricula in Information Management and Information Mastery that are being used across the educational spectrum (UME, GME, and CME). Dr. Hoffman conceived of and co-developed the Finding Information Framework (FIF) – a conceptual algorithm/teaching tool and an App and web-based tool. The FIF guides how students and clinicians ask and categorize their questions to help them identify the most effective evidence-based resource. She has presented the FIF nationally for both medical education and library science audiences; the FIF is being used at multiple medical schools across the country.

Dr. Hoffman conceived of and co-developed the One Minute Learner – a tool that promotes and structures a proactive discussion about goals and expectations between learner and teacher in the clinical setting. She has evaluated, written, and presented on this widely. The tool is being used across the country and has become part of the canon of clinical teaching tools.

Dr. Hoffman’s focus on helping all populations achieve the highest health outcomes comes from her parents and grandparents, including her grandfather who was a General Practitioner in the Bronx, laying the groundwork for Dr. Hoffman’s career in Family Medicine.

Dr. Hoffman was born and raised in New York City. A lifelong Yankee fan, she and her family spent 13 years in Red Sox territory, which allowed her children to enjoy New England life, including a lot of hiking and biking, while developing their character strength in enemy territory.

Laurie G. Jacobs, M.D., FACP, AGSF

Laurie JacobsAssociate Dean, Faculty Development
Founding Chair, Department of Internal Medicine

Dr. Jacobs is a Professor and the Founding Chair of the Department of Medicine at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, and Associate Dean of Faculty Development. Dr. Jacobs is also the Chair for the Department of Medicine at Hackensack University Medical Center, since 2016.

Dr. Jacobs is a graduate of Wesleyan University (Chemistry), and Columbia University’s Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. She completed an internal medicine residency and geriatrics clinical and research fellowships at Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in the Bronx, New York, where she remained on the faculty as Geriatrics Division Chief, Vice Chair and Interim Chair of Medicine, as well serving on Einstein’s Executive Committee for Undergraduate Medical Education, prior to joining Hackensack Meridian.

Dr. Jacobs is a Professor and the Founding Chair of the Department of Medicine at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, and Associate Dean of Faculty Development. Dr. Jacobs is also the Chair for the Department of Medicine at Hackensack University Medical Center, since 2016.

Dr. Jacobs is a graduate of Wesleyan University (Chemistry), and Columbia University’s Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons. She completed an internal medicine residency and geriatrics clinical and research fellowships at Montefiore Medical Center and Albert Einstein College of Medicine, in the Bronx, New York, where she remained on the faculty as Geriatrics Division Chief, Vice Chair and Interim Chair of Medicine, as well serving on Einstein’s Executive Committee for Undergraduate Medical Education, prior to joining Hackensack Meridian.

Dr. Jacobs is a geriatrician, and in addition to clinical, administrative and leadership roles on faculty, she is a former Board Chair (2020) and President (2019) of the American Geriatrics Society, and served on the editorial board role for the Journal of the American Geriatrics Society for more than a decade. Her research interests include anticoagulant use and systems of care for older adults and accountable care. She is the recipient of many awards and accolades in geriatrics and medicine.

Dr. Jacobs leads primary care and medical subspecialty clinical, research and educational programs for Hackensack University Medical Center, including the COVID acute clinical response, research and post-COVID Recovery Center, and also practices clinical geriatrics. At the School of Medicine, she has held a leadership role in the appointments and promotions committee, built a departmental faculty and assisted with curricular development.

Dr. Jacobs brings teaching and medical education and leadership experience, as well as an enthusiasm for interdisciplinary care of vulnerable populations to her role at the School of Medicine.

Marina Kaplan-Iosim, EdD

Marina Kaplan-IosimAssistant Dean Office of Faculty and Faculty Affairs

Marina Kaplan-Iosim, Ed.D, serves as the assistant dean of the Office of Faculty for the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine.

Prior to settling in academic education, she spent most of her career working as a Human Resources (HR) executive. Her background in HR management, recruitment, retention, compensation, labor relations, and policy interpretation has prepared her to build effective partnerships.

Marina Kaplan-Iosim, Ed.D, serves as the assistant dean of the Office of Faculty for the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine. Prior to settling in academic education, she spent most of her career working as a Human Resources (HR) executive. Her background in HR management, recruitment, retention, compensation, labor relations, and policy interpretation has prepared her to build effective partnerships.

Dr. Kaplan-Iosim, completed her undergraduate education at Seton Hall University, where she also received her M.A. and Ed.D.. Since joining Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine some 5 years ago she devoted her work to the educational mission of the School. Dr. Kaplan-Iosim works collaboratively with colleagues across the School to recognize faculty excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service, cultivate academic leadership and provide support on issues related to faculty recruitment and retention. In this role, she oversees managing junior and senior faculty promotions and appointments at the School, works with the Appointment & Promotions Committee, advises faculty on dossier preparation, career advancement in medical education and participates in the development of policies related to academic advancement. Committed to education, her goal is to support, advocate for, and advance faculty success at all levels of the institution, especially those from groups that are underrepresented in their fields.

David S. Kountz, M.D., M.B.A., M.A.C.P.

David KountzSenior Associate Dean of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
Co-Chief Academic Officer and Vice President for Academic Diversity for Hackensack Meridian Health
Vice President, Academic Affairs, Jersey Shore University Medical Center

A graduate of Princeton University, SUNY/Buffalo School of Medicine (MD) and Georgian Court University (MBA), Dr. Kountz holds state and national leadership roles in diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and graduate medical education. A practicing general internist at Jersey Shore University Medical Center since 2007, Dr. Kountz‘s research and educational interests include pipeline programs for students underrepresented in medicine; graduate medical education; leadership development; and hypertension and related disorders in underserved populations. Dr. Kountz oversees non-nursing academic programs at Jersey Shore and Ocean University Medical Centers, including the training of over 275 resident physicians and fellows.

A graduate of Princeton University, SUNY/Buffalo School of Medicine (MD) and Georgian Court University (MBA), Dr. Kountz holds state and national leadership roles in diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) and graduate medical education. A practicing general internist at Jersey Shore University Medical Center since 2007, Dr. Kountz‘s research and educational interests include pipeline programs for students underrepresented in medicine; graduate medical education; leadership development; and hypertension and related disorders in underserved populations. Dr. Kountz oversees non-nursing academic programs at Jersey Shore and Ocean University Medical Centers, including the training of over 275 resident physicians and fellows.

Among his leadership roles, Dr. Kountz is a former member of the Board of Directors of Georgian Court University and the Alliance for Independent Academic Medical Centers (AIAMC) and currently serves as co-Chair for the AIAMC National Initiative VIII: Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion. He is a past-Chair of the Steering Committee of the Group on Resident Affairs at the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC). In 2020 he was appointed a member-at-large for the National Board of Medical Examiners, and in 2021 Dr. Kountz was appointed to a 6-year term on the Institutional Review Committee of the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).

Dr. Kountz has been recognized as a Master Educator at Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School, and was the 2019 recipient of the Verice M. Mason Community Service Leader Award from the Edward J. Ill Excellence in Medicine Foundation. In 2016 he was a Governor’s appointee to the Accreditation Graduate Medical Education Council of New Jersey, and in 2020 was named to the Professional Advisory Committee for COVID-19 by New Jersey’s Commissioner of Health and Senior Services. Dr. Kountz is one of “70 African American Leaders in Healthcare to Know” by Becker’s Hospital Review and “one of New Jersey’s Most Influential DEI Leaders of 2021” by ROI-NJ. In September 2021 he was named a Master of the American College of Physicians.

Ofelia Martinez, M.D., M.P.H.

Ofelia MartinezAssistant Dean of Medical Education

Keith Metzger, Ph.D.

Keith MetzgerAssistant Dean of Medical Education
Professor of Medical Sciences

Dr. Metzger brings to the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine over a decade of experience in the development and implementation of innovative medical education programs in both new and established institutions. Trained as an anatomist, he brings his love for the classroom and skill in curricular design to the School of Medicine.

Dr. Metzger most recently served as an Associate Professor of Anatomy & Structural Biology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. As part of Einstein’s medical education reform effort, he served on the Curricular Design Executive Committee and co-chaired the group charged with transforming the College’s traditional pre-clinical curriculum into a more modern integrated one that incorporated best practices in educational theory. Prior to joining Einstein, Dr. Metzger was part of the founding team at the Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine. There, he directed the development of a major portion of the pre-clinical curriculum, recruiting, managing, and leading interdisciplinary design teams to create inaugural courses.

Dr. Metzger brings to the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine over a decade of experience in the development and implementation of innovative medical education programs in both new and established institutions. Trained as an anatomist, he brings his love for the classroom and skill in curricular design to the School of Medicine.

Dr. Metzger most recently served as an Associate Professor of Anatomy & Structural Biology at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine. As part of Einstein’s medical education reform effort, he served on the Curricular Design Executive Committee and co-chaired the group charged with transforming the College’s traditional pre-clinical curriculum into a more modern integrated one that incorporated best practices in educational theory. Prior to joining Einstein, Dr. Metzger was part of the founding team at the Hofstra Northwell School of Medicine. There, he directed the development of a major portion of the pre-clinical curriculum, recruiting, managing, and leading interdisciplinary design teams to create inaugural courses.

Dr. Metzger has been actively involved with a number of preliminary, provisional, and full Liaison Commission on Medical Education (LCME) survey visits at multiple institutions. He has also served and led educational and administrative committees with the Associated Medical Schools of New York (AMSNY), American Association of Anatomists (AAA), and the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC).

In addition to his teaching and administrative experience, Dr. Metzger maintains an active research program in both medical education research as well as the functional morphology (form-function relationship) and biomechanics of vertebrates.

Dr. Metzger received his B.A. (Anthropology, Biology) from the University of California, Santa Cruz, his Ph.D. from Stony Brook University, and was a postdoctoral fellow at Brown University.

Carmela Rocchetti, MD

Dr. Carmela RocchettiAssistant Dean of Community Engaged Medical Education

Dr. Carmela Rocchetti, Assistant Dean of Community Engaged Medical Education and Director of the Human Dimension (HD) curriculum at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine is a clinician educator dedicated to improving health outcomes for historically underserved communities. As a general internist with multiple leadership roles in community health, she focuses on reducing health disparities and facilitating community outreach through community-engaged medical education. In her medical education role, Dr. Rocchetti develops transformative programs and curricula that equip trainees with essential skills and inspire them with a profound sense of responsibility to address health equity. The innovative Human Dimension course she and her team designed mobilizes medical students to provide impactful support to communities while gaining experiential learning.

Dr. Carmela Rocchetti, Assistant Dean of Community Engaged Medical Education and Director of the Human Dimension (HD) curriculum at the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine is a clinician educator dedicated to improving health outcomes for historically underserved communities. As a general internist with multiple leadership roles in community health, she focuses on reducing health disparities and facilitating community outreach through community-engaged medical education. In her medical education role, Dr. Rocchetti develops transformative programs and curricula that equip trainees with essential skills and inspire them with a profound sense of responsibility to address health equity. The innovative Human Dimension course she and her team designed mobilizes medical students to provide impactful support to communities while gaining experiential learning.

A physician leader at Hackensack Meridian Health since 2012, Dr. Rocchetti has undertaken roles such as Internal Medicine Assistant Residency Program Director at Jersey Shore University Medical Center and Director of Ambulatory Education. Before joining Meridian Health, she served as the Director of the Lenox Hill Primary Care Center in NY. She has held faculty appointments at New York University Medical Center and Robert Wood Johnson Medical School. Dr. Rocchetti, a first-generation college and medical school graduate, graduated from Cornell University, where she was recognized as a Cornell National Scholar. She completed her Internal Medicine training at New York Presbyterian Hospital-Weill Cornell, serving as ambulatory chief resident. Married and the proud mother of three children, her deep commitment to addressing social determinants of health is rooted in her family's hardship and resilience after immigrating from Italy. Dr. Rocchetti is passionate about inspiring the next generation of physician leaders to transform healthcare delivery and promote equitable healthcare access for all.

Kenneth N. Sable, M.D., M.B.A., F.A.C.E.P.

Kenneth SableAssistant Dean of Clinical Integration

Kenneth N. Sable, M.D., M.B.A., F.A.C.E.P., Assistant Dean for Integration for the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, is regional president of the southern market of Hackensack Meridian Health. The southern market includes Jersey Shore University Medical Center, K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital, Ocean University Medical Center, Riverview Medical Center, and Southern Ocean Medical Center. Previously, Dr. Sable was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Saint Peter’s Healthcare System in New Brunswick, and vice chairman for operations in the Department of Emergency Medicine at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York.

Kenneth N. Sable, M.D., M.B.A., F.A.C.E.P., Assistant Dean for Integration for the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, is regional president of the southern market of Hackensack Meridian Health. The southern market includes Jersey Shore University Medical Center, K. Hovnanian Children’s Hospital, Ocean University Medical Center, Riverview Medical Center, and Southern Ocean Medical Center. Previously, Dr. Sable was Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer for Saint Peter’s Healthcare System in New Brunswick, and vice chairman for operations in the Department of Emergency Medicine at Maimonides Medical Center in Brooklyn, New York.

Dr. Sable holds a Doctor of Medicine from Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School and completed an Emergency Medicine Residency Program at Cooper University Medical Center in Camden, New Jersey. He holds a Master of Business Administration from the University of Massachusetts, Isenberg School of Management, and a Bachelor of Science in Engineering in Computer Science and Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania. He is a Fellow of the American College of Emergency Physicians (FACEP), Diplomat of the American Board of Emergency Medicine (ABEM), and a graduate of Maimonides Medical Center’s Physician Leadership and Development Program. He has also received the Medical Service Award from Bikur Cholim.

Dr. Sable is the Chair of the New Jersey Hospital Association’s (NJHA) Teaching Hospital Constituency Group, and on the board of the NJHA. He is also a Board Member of Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Coastal & Northern New Jersey.

Ihor S. Sawczuk, M.D., FACS

Ihor SawczukAssociate Dean of Clinical and Research Integration

A known subject leader, esteemed physician, and sought-after educator, Dr. Sawczuk has held various roles in healthcare. Dr. Sawczuk completed his urologic training at the Squier Urological Clinic of the New York-Presbyterian Hospital and his urologic oncologic training as a fellow of the National Cancer Institute in the Departments of Urology and Human Genetics of Columbia University. He attended the Medical College of Pennsylvania.

He has been the recipient of numerous awards from prestigious academic and medical associations. He was the recipient of the Russell W. Lavengood Distinguished Service Award from the New York Section of the American Urological Association and was presented the prestigious Russell and Mary Hugh Scott Education Award by the American Foundation of Urologic Disease.

A known subject leader, esteemed physician, and sought-after educator, Dr. Sawczuk has held various roles in healthcare. Dr. Sawczuk completed his urologic training at the Squier Urological Clinic of the New York-Presbyterian Hospital and his urologic oncologic training as a fellow of the National Cancer Institute in the Departments of Urology and Human Genetics of Columbia University. He attended the Medical College of Pennsylvania.

He has been the recipient of numerous awards from prestigious academic and medical associations. He was the recipient of the Russell W. Lavengood Distinguished Service Award from the New York Section of the American Urological Association and was presented the prestigious Russell and Mary Hugh Scott Education Award by the American Foundation of Urologic Disease. In 1996, the office of the First Lady, Hillary Rodham Clinton recognized him for his Chernobyl humanitarian efforts. Dr. Sawczuk was recognized by Becker’s Hospital Review as one of the nation’s physician leaders of hospitals and health systems to know two years in a row.

He was honored by the National Ethics Collection of Organizations as a recipient of the 2017 Ellis Island Medal of Honor. An avid clinician, researcher and executive leader, he has authored/co-authored more than 250 abstracts, articles and book chapters.

He has held various leadership positions including Chair of Urology, Executive Vice President and Chief Medical Officer.

In 2016, Dr. Sawczuk became the first physician president of Hackensack University Medical Center and serves as Associate Dean of Clinical and Research Integration at The Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine.

John T. Schiavone, M.B.A.

John SchiavoneChief Operating Officer

John Schiavone has been building teams and executing complex initiatives for over 25 years in the higher education, software, automotive, call center, and Wall Street arenas. He was personally hired by Chrysler’s EVP of Manufacturing in 1996, the CEO of Tower Automotive (2000), co-founder of Intuit Inc. (2003), and the Provost of Wayne State University (2011) for his process and operations acumen.

At Wayne State University in Detroit, Mich. Mr. Schiavone worked on multiple campus-wide initiatives and several specific to the School of Medicine (SOM). In particular, he assumed a lead role in strengthening the SOM’s clinical partnership with the Henry Ford Health System, updated the School’s Strategic Plan, and prepared for the 2015 LCME accreditation site visit.

John Schiavone has been building teams and executing complex initiatives for over 25 years in the higher education, software, automotive, call center, and Wall Street arenas. He was personally hired by Chrysler’s EVP of Manufacturing in 1996, the CEO of Tower Automotive (2000), co-founder of Intuit Inc. (2003), and the Provost of Wayne State University (2011) for his process and operations acumen.

At Wayne State University in Detroit, Mich. Mr. Schiavone worked on multiple campus-wide initiatives and several specific to the School of Medicine (SOM). In particular, he assumed a lead role in strengthening the SOM’s clinical partnership with the Henry Ford Health System, updated the School’s Strategic Plan, and prepared for the 2015 LCME accreditation site visit. He also actively coordinated a consortium of Michigan’s medical schools to secure state-funded primary care residency funding, and played lead roles in preparing the successful application for the multi-million dollar National Institutes of Health Research Enhancement for Building Infrastructure Leading to Diversity (REBUILD) and Bridges to Baccalaureate Program (BRIDGES) grant proposals. In addition, he served as the co-Chair of the Liaison Committee preparing for the 2017 university-wide reaffirmation of accreditation with the Higher Learning Commission.

Mr. Schiavone received his M.B.A. with distinction from the Harvard Business School, and his A. B. in Economics magna cum laude from Harvard College.

“Though operating behind the scenes and out of view of our students” said Mr. Schiavone, “Finance and Operations ensures that the financial, legal, philanthropy, government affairs, facilities, IT, purchasing, payroll, and planning activities meet and exceed the needs of our students, faculty, and staff. We also support the continuous improvement of the processes, policies, and relationships that allow the School of Medicine to operate smoothly and remain in compliance with all regulatory and accreditation requirements.”

Gregory T. Simonian, M.D.

Gregory SimonianAssociate Dean of Admissions and Chair, Admissions Committee

Dr. Gregory Simonian, Associate Professor of Surgery at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, has been chairman of the admissions planning committee since June 2016.

Dr. Simonian is currently the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief of Operations for the Heart and Vascular Hospital at Hackensack University Medical Center. Prior to joining the School of Medicine he served as the president of the medical staff and chairman of the Medical Executive Committee at HackensackUMC. He has served as the Chief of Endovascular Studies for 14 years and is currently the Chief of Vascular Surgery at Mountainside Hospital. He was previously the Chief of Vascular Surgery at Palisades Medical Center.

Dr. Gregory Simonian, Associate Professor of Surgery at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, has been chairman of the admissions planning committee since June 2016.

Dr. Simonian is currently the Executive Vice Chairman and Chief of Operations for the Heart and Vascular Hospital at Hackensack University Medical Center. Prior to joining the School of Medicine he served as the president of the medical staff and chairman of the Medical Executive Committee at HackensackUMC. He has served as the Chief of Endovascular Studies for 14 years and is currently the Chief of Vascular Surgery at Mountainside Hospital. He was previously the Chief of Vascular Surgery at Palisades Medical Center. Dr. Simonian has been selected for many years by physicians and nurses as a top vascular surgeon in New Jersey Monthly’s annual list of “Top Doctors,” and in 2016 he was recognized by Castle Connolly.

A board-certified vascular surgeon, Dr. Simonian founded the Division of Endovascular Studies at HackensackUMC and has fostered the growth of the division into one of the most successful and recognized in the region. His interests include minimally invasive approaches to complex vascular diseases, and he manages more than 60 clinical trials. His work has covered subjects ranging from the basic science arena – including gene expression at the molecular level – to technical vascular considerations and multidisciplinary program development in the treatment of vascular diseases.

Dr. Simonian, originally from Tenafly, N.J., completed medical school as well as his surgical residency and vascular surgery fellowship at the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey and was invited into the prestigious Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society. A summa cum laude graduate and member of Phi Beta Kappa at the University of Richmond, Va., he has been the recipient of numerous honors and awards for accomplishments in academics and leadership.

Dr. Simonian has been a lecturer at many symposia, and he routinely presents at regional and national meetings. He has developed comprehensive teaching programs and dedicates his time to teaching medical students, residents and fellows. He was nominated by the medical students at the New Jersey Medical School for the Outstanding Teaching award and received the Outstanding Teaching Attending Award from the surgical residents.

Dr. Simonian is a member of the Board of Trustees of the QualCare Multiple Employer Welfare Association, and for the past five years he has served as the Chairman of the Board of the Hovnanian School in New Milford, N.J.

Laurie Sullivan, Ph.D.

Laurie SullivanSenior Associate Dean of Student Affairs & Wellbeing

Dr. Sullivan has been committed to educating and supporting the professional caregiver, particularly physicians, for the past 30 years. During that time, she has worked with medical students, residents and faculty to ensure that they maintain their own wellbeing, while they focus on the wellbeing of others.

She began her career in medical education as Director of Physician Education and Training Services at Hazelden New York, a nationally known chemical dependency treatment facility. She trained primary care resident physicians throughout the New York City area in addiction medicine. Moreover, she raised $1m to develop and implement curricula to help faculty physicians integrate addiction medicine education into their residency programs.

Dr. Sullivan has been committed to educating and supporting the professional caregiver, particularly physicians, for the past 30 years. During that time, she has worked with medical students, residents and faculty to ensure that they maintain their own wellbeing, while they focus on the wellbeing of others.

She began her career in medical education as Director of Physician Education and Training Services at Hazelden New York, a nationally known chemical dependency treatment facility. She trained primary care resident physicians throughout the New York City area in addiction medicine. Moreover, she raised $1m to develop and implement curricula to help faculty physicians integrate addiction medicine education into their residency programs. She moved on to New York Medical College in the Department of Family Medicine where she was an early proponent of educating medical students about communicating medical errors to patients. She served as Assistant Dean of Admissions at the medical school for several years before spending 10 years as the Director of Behavioral Medicine for the St. Joseph’s Family Medicine Residency Program in Yonkers, NY. In this role, she worked closely with residents to strengthen their resilience and ensure they wellbeing through providing regular support groups, retreats, and education on patient-centered care. As the Chair of the Clinical Competency Committee, Research and Recruitment Committees she ensured that the support for resident success was integrated into all aspects of the Program.

Prior to settling in medical education, Dr. Sullivan worked to support relief and development staff in conflict areas of the world. A student of occupational traumatic stress, she trained and supported the caregivers of refugees and displaced persons in collaboration with various UN agencies and NGOs. She began her career in social work with the Trauma Intervention Program of HHC, where she provided on-site, psycho-educational support for emergency response personnel.

Dr. Sullivan believes that supporting medical students in developing their own sense of wellbeing is an essential part of medical education today.

Chosang Tendhar, Ph.D.

Chosang TendharDirector, Office of Institutional Effectiveness and Assessment

Dr. Tendhar has extensive experience working in government and higher education and holds a Ph.D. from Virginia Tech in Educational Research and Evaluation. He served in the Central Tibetan Administration in India for nearly six years and held numerous senior level positions, including the Under Secretary of the Department of Finance. He served as the spokesperson and the policy strategist for the Department.

Dr. Tendhar’s professional experiences in the U.S. began with the position of Statistician at Baylor College of Medicine (BCM). During his two-year tenure with BCM, Dr. Tendhar also served as the interim Director of the Office of Evaluation, Assessment, and Research.

Dr. Tendhar has extensive experience working in government and higher education and holds a Ph.D. from Virginia Tech in Educational Research and Evaluation. He served in the Central Tibetan Administration in India for nearly six years and held numerous senior level positions, including the Under Secretary of the Department of Finance. He served as the spokesperson and the policy strategist for the Department.

Dr. Tendhar’s professional experiences in the U.S. began with the position of Statistician at Baylor College of Medicine (BCM). During his two-year tenure with BCM, Dr. Tendhar also served as the interim Director of the Office of Evaluation, Assessment, and Research. He was then with the College of Pharmacy at Long Island University as the Assistant Director of Assessment for two years. Prior to joining the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine, Dr. Tendhar served as the Director of Assessment at Adelphi University.

In addition to performing assessment and evaluation activities, Dr. Tendhar was involved in many collaborative research projects, including a successful grant application with the Association of Standardized Patient Educators. He has provided extensive research and statistical consulting services to students and faculty with research projects often resulting in journal publications and conference presentations. The number of articles he has published in peer-reviewed journals is a testament to his strong scholarly research skills. Dr. Tendhar is excited to help the School of Medicine reach its mission of developing students, residents, and faculty to deliver the highest quality care for all.

Stanley R. Terlecky, Ph.D.

Stanley TerleckyVice Dean of Research and Medical Sciences

Dr. Stanley R. Terlecky joined the HMSOM as a founding member of the Dean’s Executive Cabinet and departmental chair. As of 2021, he has served as Vice Dean of Research and Medical Sciences, overseeing the Office of Research and Graduate Studies; he is also a teaching Professor and founding Chair of the Department of Medical Sciences.

Responsible for managing the school’s research/scholarship infrastructure, Dr. Terlecky has led efforts to create a culture of inquiry and innovation in a community of scholars. These include the establishment of opportunities for curricular research and degrees/certificates at partnering institutions; bolstering enrichment opportunities in research/scholarship and global health; and integrating students into the extant HMH research enterprise.

Committed to biomedical education innovation, Dr. Terlecky has - for over two decades - developed and launched unique training programs for both medical and graduate students. He is recognized as an outstanding teacher, mentor, and student advocate.

Dr. Stanley R. Terlecky joined the HMSOM as a founding member of the Dean’s Executive Cabinet and departmental chair. As of 2021, he has served as Vice Dean of Research and Medical Sciences, overseeing the Office of Research and Graduate Studies; he is also a teaching Professor and founding Chair of the Department of Medical Sciences.

Responsible for managing the school’s research/scholarship infrastructure, Dr. Terlecky has led efforts to create a culture of inquiry and innovation in a community of scholars. These include the establishment of opportunities for curricular research and degrees/certificates at partnering institutions; bolstering enrichment opportunities in research/scholarship and global health; and integrating students into the extant HMH research enterprise.

Committed to biomedical education innovation, Dr. Terlecky has - for over two decades - developed and launched unique training programs for both medical and graduate students. He is recognized as an outstanding teacher, mentor, and student advocate.

Dr. Terlecky is an active and accomplished researcher and biotechnology entrepreneur whose work has focused on understanding peroxisome biology in human health, disease, and aging. He has published his research regularly and holds several United States and worldwide patents. His efforts have been supported by - among others - grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the March of Dimes, the Children’s Research Center of Michigan, and most recently the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Dr. Terlecky has presented his research worldwide and served on study sections for the NIH and the National Science Foundation.

Dr. Terlecky received a bachelor’s degree in Fine Arts from New York University in 1984, and performed graduate studies in biochemistry, immunology, and physiology at Harvard University. In 1993, he received a doctorate degree in cellular and molecular physiology from Tufts University School of Medicine, Sackler School of Biomedical Sciences. From 1993 to 1998, Dr. Terlecky was a postdoctoral fellow at the University of California, San Diego. In 1998, he joined the faculty in the Department of Pharmacology at the Wayne State University (WSU) School of Medicine.

Dr. Terlecky has received the Individual National Research Service Award from the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, NIH; the Basil O’Connor Starter Scholar Research Award from the March of Dimes Birth Defects Foundation; the Junior Faculty Lectureship from the WSU Academy of Scholars; the College Teaching Award (4x), the Interdisciplinary Biomedical Sciences Curriculum Award, and the Research Excellence Award from the WSU School of Medicine; the Inventor Recognition Award from the WSU Technology Transfer Office; and the Inventor Recognition Award for issued United States patent from the WSU Technology Commercialization Office.

“It has been a distinct honor and privilege to be part of the team that led the effort to build the Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine,” said Dr. Terlecky. “Our late founding dean - Bonnie Stanton - had a vision for producing 21st century physicians that deliver transformational healthcare focused on those ‘in greatest need’. It is rare to have an opportunity to participate in the creation of such an enterprise and my sense is that what has been synthesized is a model for medical schools across the country.”

Florian Thomas, M.D., Ph.D.

Florian ThomasInterim Associate Dean of Faculty
Chair, APC Committee
Founding Chair & Professor of Neurology

Dr. Thomas is the Founding Chair & Professor of the Department of Neurology at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine (SOM) & Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC).

He came to New Jersey in 2016, after 20 years as tenured faculty at St. Louis University where he served as associate residency program director for the Department of Neurology. He is building the Neurology Departments at HUMC & the SOM. At the former he developed subspecialty centers in MS, Hereditary Neuropathy, Concussion, Memory Loss & Brain Health, ALS Headache & Movement Disorders & upgraded the Stroke Service & Neurocritical Care. His efforts are guided by the belief that the health of people with chronic conditions is best served by an interprofessional team that include nurses, dietitians, psychologists, physicians, rehab therapists & social workers. At the SOM he was part of the curriculum team for neuroscience.

Dr. Thomas is the Founding Chair & Professor of the Department of Neurology at Hackensack Meridian School of Medicine (SOM) & Hackensack University Medical Center (HUMC).

He came to New Jersey in 2016, after 20 years as tenured faculty at St. Louis University where he served as associate residency program director for the Department of Neurology. He is building the Neurology Departments at HUMC & the SOM. At the former he developed subspecialty centers in MS, Hereditary Neuropathy, Concussion, Memory Loss & Brain Health, ALS Headache & Movement Disorders & upgraded the Stroke Service & Neurocritical Care. His efforts are guided by the belief that the health of people with chronic conditions is best served by an interprofessional team that include nurses, dietitians, psychologists, physicians, rehab therapists & social workers. At the SOM he was part of the curriculum team for neuroscience. He is a member of the Diversity & Equity Committee, chairs the Appointments & Promotions Committee & serves as faculty advisor to the Student Interest Group in Neurology & the Medical Student Pride Alliance. He holds graduate degrees in psychology, molecular biology, microbiology & health outcomes research from University of Bonn, Germany, St. Louis University & McGill University, Canada. Having completed residency & fellowship training at Case Western Reserve University, Columbia University & the Montreal Neurological Institute, he is board certified in spinal cord medicine, neural repair & rehabilitation & neurology. His clinical practice & research focus on neurogenetic & neuroimmunologic conditions & spinal cord injury. He is editor-in-chief of the Journal of Spinal Cord Medicine & serves on the Boards of the Metro New Jersey chapter of the National MS Society & the American Paraplegia Society.

Priorities in his new role include: optimizing Office of Faculty processes in light of the growing need for academic teachers; creating a faculty development & retention paradigm that includes a URIM focus; & considering opportunities for rewarding faculty with proven success & potential in generating new information relevant to Medicine.

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