Drs. de la Torre and LockeProfessor and Director of the Division of Plastic Surgery Jorge de la Torre, M.D., MSHA, is the new Bruce F. Connell Chair in Plastic Surgery, and Professor and Director of the Division of Transplantation Jayme Locke, M.D., MPH, has been named the Arnold G. Diethelm Endowed Chair in Transplantation Surgery.

Bruce F. Connell, M.D., was originally from Gordo, Alabama. He attended Stamford Pharmacy School and had a lifelong connection to Alabama. After graduating from medical school in Buffalo, New York, he completed his plastic surgery training at the Mayo Clinic. Connell practiced in Orange County from 1958 until he retired at the age of 85.

As a thought leader and innovator in aesthetic plastic surgery, he trained numerous surgeons and lectured around the world. In addition, he served as adjunct faculty to UAB Plastic Surgery.

“Dr. Connell’s contributions as an educator and pioneer in plastic surgery are significant and lasting. His generosity and philanthropy will directly support the growth of the UAB Plastic Surgery” said de la Torre. “We all look forward to honoring his legacy and memory.”

Arnold G. Diethelm, M.D., former chair of the Department of Surgery and a leader in transplantation surgery at UAB was a native of Baltimore, Maryland. His career at UAB began in 1967 when he joined the UAB Department of Surgery, upon the completion of his two-year fellowship at Harvard, at the invitation of John W. Kirklin. Diethelm took on the challenge of building a nationally recognized transplantation program from the ground up at UAB.

Diethelm was the author or co-author of more than 210 publications in peer-reviewed journals, served as a member of 26 surgical societies, as well as the chair of the UAB Department of Surgery from 1982-1999, and was honored with numerous memberships, awards, visiting professorships and appointments.

“Dr. Diethelm was a pioneer and leader of transplantation at UAB and across the nation,” said Locke. “I hope to emulate his spirit of humility and excellence in transplant surgery.”

Fay Fletcher Kerner Endowed Chair of Surgery Herbert Chen, M.D., FACS, is proud of both de la Torre and Locke.

“The department is grateful to have leaders in the field, like Drs. de la Torre and Locke, call UAB Surgery home,” said Chen. “I want to congratulate both faculty members on achieving the highest academic award that a University can bestow. Both Drs. de la Torre and Locke are very deserving.”