In celebration of almost two decades of building one of the most comprehensive palliative and supportive care programs in the country, the UAB Center for Palliative and Supportive Care would like to acknowledge the contributions of countless individuals from patients to providers to administrators and the public.  The following individuals named below have excelled in promoting the mission of this work at various points in our history and as such we recognize them as our first group of Palliative Care Legacy Builders.

The CEO’s: Dr. Mike Waldrum and Mr. David Hoidal

Together Dr. Waldrum and Mr. Hoidal provided integral early multi-faceted support for the palliative care program at UAB and University Hospital. Their leadership during a crucial time set the standard for the integration of inpatient palliative care in our organization and thus helped propel our program into the national conversation.

The Leaders: Drs. John Shuster and Pam Fordham

Together Drs. Shuster and Fordham representing medicine and nursing together envisioned the Center and worked to build the original structure and mission of the program as a synergistic entity between these two professional disciplines and Schools. Having served as the first Director and Deputy Director respectively their leadership also propelled the academic and education mission of the Center to the national stage.

The Faculty: Drs. Christine Ritchie and Amos Bailey

Together both Drs. Ritchie as the second Director of the Center and Dr. Bailey as the founder of both The Balm of Gilead and the Safe Harbor palliative care units elevated the status of the center to a true triple mission of outstanding clinical care, education for learners of all disciplines as well as outstanding research and advancement of knowledge.  Both have served on the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine and Dr. Ritchie has just completed a term as the President of the organization.

The Nurses: Jackie Palmore and Jackie Westbrook

Together the “Jackie’s” led the original efforts in UAB Hospital to establish the Palliative care consultation service and to open the inpatient Palliative and Comfort Care Unit. Working together with countless nurses and physicians they have helped to solidify our specialty and the holistic nursing model of care as one to be emulated. 

The Volunteers: Carol Hunter and Louis Josof

Together and individually this team or “dynamic duo” has connected our mission to hundreds of individuals in Birmingham and throughout the country with their spheres of community involvement. From their families to friends to other volunteers they have been tireless in their love and promotion of palliative care for our community. 

The Dedicated: Dr. Cynthia Baker and Vicki Herring

Drs. Cynthia Baker and Vicki Herring represent the first fellow for the UAB Palliative Medicine Fellowship program and the first staff member hired for the Center, respectively. Both of these individuals took a risk in their careers to be the first with this “new thing” called palliative care and both have remained dedicated to its cause and mission. 

The Supporters: John Beard and Jane Webb LaCagnina

Together serving on the first Community Advisory Board for the Center these two community individuals have connected, collaborated and contributed consistently to the success of the Center for Palliative and Supportive Care. Their combined wisdom, passion and guidance have propelled the Center to heights in our community, region and nationally that most would have not thought possible in Birmingham, Alabama.