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Dr. Daniel ChuThe UAB Department of Surgery is proud to announce that Daniel Chu, M.D., MSPH, FACS, FASCRS, will serve the Division of Gastrointestinal Surgery as division director, effective October 1, 2023.

As director, Chu will guide all administrative, clinical, and research efforts for the division, while overseeing strategic development for the unit.

He will be assuming the role previously held by Gregory Kennedy, M.D., Ph.D., who was recently promoted to the position of executive vice chair of the Department of Surgery.

“Dr. Chu has developed a reputation of exemplary service as a surgeon-scientist, health advocate, and clinician,” says Fay Fletcher Kerner Endowed Chair of Surgery Herbert Chen, M.D. “We look forward to the accomplishments this talented division will continue to pioneer through his leadership.”

Professional Background, Leadership, and Accolades

After his undergraduate degree at Yale, Chu attended medical school at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, where he was selected for the Katz Fellowship in Thoracic Surgery. Chu completed his general surgery residency at Boston University Medical Center and served as administrative chief resident. After residency, Chu completed a fellowship in colon and rectal surgery at the Mayo Clinic. Upon arriving at UAB, he also completed his Master of Science in Public Health as part of his K23 to advance his translational, health equity research.

Chu joined the UAB Department of Surgery in 2014 as an assistant professor and was promoted to associate professor in 2018. He also serves as the Physician Advisor for the UAB Enhanced Recovery Program, Vice Chair of Health Services Research, and Chair of the UAB Asian American Pacific Islander (AAPI) Faculty Association. He was named the Selwyn M. Vickers Endowed Chair in 2022 to recognize his work in surgical disparities.

An acclaimed surgeon-scientist, Chu is a contributing scientist for both the Minority Health and Health Equity Research Center (MHERC) and the Center for Clinical and Translational Science (CCTS). His NIH-funded laboratory focuses on identifying, understanding, and reducing health disparities in surgery with particular attention to health literacy. He serves as PI on two R01 projects (Advancing Surgical Cancer Care and Equity in the Deep South (ASCENDS) and Surgical Equity Advanced Through Health Literacy (SEAHL)) and a U01 project with the CDC and Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation (Improving Health Outcomes for Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease). His research work has been recognized with numerous national and international awards from organizations including the American College of Surgeons, AcademyHealth, and the International ERAS Society.

Chu has been selected for Birmingham's B-Metro Best Doctors for four consecutive years and his Division was the grand prize winner for the National Colorectal Cancer Roundtable's 80 Percent National Achievement Award. Throughout his career, Chu has also been recognized for teaching and has received the Marshall M. Urist Junior Faculty Teacher of the Year and the Mark H. Deierhoi Faculty Mentor of the Year awards.