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November 01, 2021

Three faculty honored with endowed chair or professorship in the Heersink School of Medicine

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An appointment to an endowed chair or professorship is among the highest academic honors a faculty member can receive. The UAB Marnix E. Heersink School of Medicine holds a remarkable 214 endowed chairs and professorships. These honors are essential to recruiting and retaining premier educators, clinicians, and researchers. Endowed chairs and professorships also allow donors to link their names to an area of special meaning within the university. 

This month, the school is celebrating three faculty members’ appointments to endowed positions.

Marie Carmelle Elie headshotMarie-Carmelle Elie, M.D., FACEP, FCCM, FAAEM, RDMS
Endowed Professorship in Emergency Medicine, Department of Emergency Medicine  

Marie-Carmelle Elie, M.D., is a professor in and chair of the Department of Emergency Medicine. She earned her medical degree from the State University of New York in Brooklyn with a distinction in research. Following an emergency medicine residency at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York, she completed the prestigious Critical Care/Trauma Fellowship at the R. Adam Cowley Shock Trauma Center at the University of Maryland. She is triple board-certified in Emergency Medicine, Critical Care, and Hospice and Palliative Care Medicine. 

Elie previously served as an associate professor in the Division of Critical Care, Department of Emergency Medicine and the Division of Palliative Care, Department of Medicine at the University of Florida’s College of Medicine. There, she served as director of Research and Clinical Trials and directed the emergency-critical care research effort. Additionally, she served as chief medical officer for Gainesville’s Haven, a hospice and palliative medicine organization that offers services across the State of Florida. 

Elie co-chaired the hospital sepsis committee for the University of Florida Health. Through this role, she spearheaded the hospital-wide sepsis protocols, instituted the emergency room sepsis alert, and coordinated plans to establish a community-wide program that has engaged neighboring facilities and the prehospital system. 


Close-up of Dr. Moon Nahm, MD (Professor, Laboratory Medicine) sitting in hospital.Moon H. Nahm, M.D.
SK Bioscience Endowed Chair in Pneumonia Research, Division of Pulmonary, Allergy & Critical Care Medicine, Department of Medicine  

Moon H. Nahm, M.D., is a professor in the Department of Medicine with a secondary appointment in the Department of Microbiology. He obtained his medical degree from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri, where he also completed Internal Medicine and Laboratory Medicine residencies in the Department of Pathology, as well as completing post-doctoral research training in the Department of Microbiology. He was a faculty member at Washington University from 1980-1996. He then moved to the University of Rochester in Rochester, New York, before joining UAB as a professor in June 2001. He directed the clinical immunology laboratory for UAB Hospital until 2016.  

In his research laboratory, Nahm studies immune responses to pneumococcal polysaccharide antigens, bacterial pathogenesis, diagnosis of bacterial infections, and vaccines against bacterial infections. In addition, his laboratory serves as the Bacterial Respiratory Pathogens Reference Laboratory for the National Institute of Health and the Pneumococcal Serology Reference Laboratory for the World Health Organization. 


Kenneth G Saag headshotKenneth G. Saag, M.D., M.Sc.
Anna Lois Waters Endowed Chair, Division of Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology, Department of Medicine  

Kenneth G. Saag, M.D., M.Sc., is a professor of Medicine and holds the Jane Knight Lowe Endowed Chair in the Division of Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology. He has served as director of the Division Clinical Immunology and Rheumatology since July 2020.  

He is the vice chair of Outcomes and Effectiveness Research and the director of the UAB Comprehensive Arthritis, Musculoskeletal, Bone, and Autoimmunity Center. He has been a practicing physician and researcher in the Heersink School of Medicine since 1998. His research focuses on comparative effectiveness and safety of therapeutics as well as methods to improve quality of care in gout and osteoporosis. 

Saag became president-elect of the American College of Rheumatology in November 2020 and he is a past president of the National Osteoporosis Foundation Board of Trustees, the only rheumatologist to hold that positon. He served UAB as director of the Center for Outcomes Effectiveness Research and Education (COERE) from 2009 to 2020. He also directs the Center of Research Translation (CoRT) in Gout and Hyperuricemia, a program supported by the NIH for nearly a decade. He also founded and directed the UAB Center for Education and Research on Musculoskeletal Disorders.