• Congratulations to the 2023-2024 SAAS Visiting Professors!
  • Zhi Fong, MD is the recipient of the 2024 SAAS Junior Faculty Award!
  • Radhika Rastogi, MD is the recipient of the 2024 Esther Tsai Sugg Award for the highest scoring SAAS abstract to 2024 Academic Surgical Congress!
  • Christy Chai, MD is the recipient of the 2024 SAAS-SUS Mid-Career Award!
  • Areeba Saif, MD is the recipient of the 2023 SAAS-AWS Resident Research Travel Award!
  • Raja Narayan, MD, MPH is the recipient of the 2023 SAAS Resident/Fellow Development Scholarship!
  • Jeremy Chang, MD is the winner of the 2023 SAAS Annual Meeting Travel Award!
  • Russell Woo, MD is the recipient of the 2023 SAAS-SUS Leadership Agility Program Scholarship!

2023 SAAS Election

Voting has closed

Treasurer-Elect

Statements

Nancy Cho
Nominated by Susan Tsai
Dear SAAS Family – I am excited to express my interest for the position of Treasurer-Elect and thank you for your consideration. I am the Section Chief of Endocrine Surgery at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Assistant Professor of Surgery at Harvard Medical School. I attended my first SAAS meeting in 2018 and was thrilled to find a passionate, engaged community dedicated to addressing the unique challenges faced by Asian American surgeons. Since then, I have served as Chair of the Communications Committee (2019-2021) and Program Committee member (2021-2023). SAAS has easily been one of the most rewarding parts of my professional career, and it would be an honor to continue to serve as Treasurer-Elect. My top priorities include 1) ensuring the financial growth of our Society, 2) identifying creative opportunities to support our members’ academic careers; and 3) enabling membership access for all interested parties, regardless of financial background. Thank you for your support.
Lyen Huang
I am an Assistant Professor at the University of Utah specializing in colorectal surgery. My research uses behavior change and implementation science to improve patient safety through health systems interventions. As treasurer-elect, my goal would be to build on the work of current and past officers to create the infrastructure and processes that will ensure the continued viability, growth, and success of SAAS. I have been a SAAS member since its founding and benefitted from the Resident Development Scholarship, a Visiting Professorship, and the Surgical Leadership Boot Camp. I have served on SAAS Scholarship, Program, and Communications as well as AAS, ASCRS, and NCCN committees. I have experience navigating complex issues with lawyers and accountants, modeling quantitative datasets, managing a free clinic, building global surgery programs, and developing software. I hope you will grant me the privilege and honor to serve as your SAAS treasurer-elect.
Lindsay Kuo
I have been a member of SAAS since for several years. I have served on the Communications Committee, and subsequently as the SAAS Liaison to the AAS. In this capacity I had the privilege of representing our organization within the AAS, and I organized the SAAS-SBAS joint panel at last year’s ASC. I also served on the SAAS Executive Council, which allowed me to observe and contribute to making decisions that will impact our organization for years to come. Consequently, I have the experience to serve in a role that will continue to shape our organization’s future. I also have an MBA, which will uniquely position me to take on leadership of SAAS’ finances. SAAS is a growing organization, and consequently the Society and its members will have evolving needs. I believe I can steward our Society and its Foundation through this growth period. I would be honored to be the Treasurer-Elect.

Vote (1 vote)

90
Treasurer-Elect

Thanks for your vote!

Recorder

Statements

Jennifer Kuo
As a dedicated and accomplished surgeon, I am excited to apply for the position of Recorder within the Society of Asian Academic Surgeons. With a strong background in surgical procedures, patient care, and clinical research, I am well-prepared to contribute to the society’s mission of advancing surgical knowledge and promoting excellence in the field. My attention to detail, meticulous documentation skills, and commitment to upholding the highest standards align perfectly with the role of Recorder. Having served as Program Chair and Associate Editor of JSR for 3 years previously, I am well familiar with the role and duties it entails. If given the opportunity, I am eager to leverage my experience to further nurture and advance our successful collaboration with JSR, and continue to advance the growth of our surgeon community.
Julia Tchou
I have served as Chair of the Scholarship Committee and as a member of the SAAS Program Committee. I have reviewed over 50 manuscripts for the Journal of surgical research. I always provided my reviewed on or before the due date. I am very organized and task oriented and I am nominating myself to serve as Recorder for the SAAS.

Vote (1 vote)

86
Recorder

Thanks for your vote!

SAAS Representative to AWS

Statements

Priya Dedhia
As an Asian woman, I did not realize how lack of diversity affected me until I joined organizations with abundant diversity. In the past, I felt alone and did not have mentors who looked like me or had similar experiences. The network I developed through my 4+ years of participation in SAAS and AWS not only strengthened my voice, but also taught me how to support my women Asian colleagues as they pursue their goals. As the SAAS representative for AWS, I intend to build on my SAAS Scholarship Committee experience to advance programs that promote women Asian academic surgeons. I strongly believe that academic coaching and sponsorship programs can provide long-term support for career development —and SAAS and AWS are ideal platforms for these efforts. My prior experience developing programs for AAS and AWS ensure my commitment to serving as the SAAS-AWS liaison. Thank you for your consideration.
Sophie Dream
As an Endocrine Surgery Fellow, I attended my first SAAS meeting in Boston; I have attended every subsequent meeting since then and try to make sure one of my medical students is able to present our research at each meeting. This year, I am completing my service as the chair of the SAAS Communications Committee. During my time in this role, the committee was able solicit six multiple editorials for our newsletter from our trainees-four of which have been published in the Journal of Surgical Research as SAAS publications. I would like to serve SAAS as the Representative to AWS. I have been active in both organizations for the last three years-serving on the AWS publications committee since 2020. I am able to fulfill the responsibilities of the role of the SAAS Representative to AWS and hope that I can amplify the Asian/Asian American voices in AWS.
Annabelle Fonseca
I am a surgical oncologist currently at the University of South Alabama (USA). I moved here from India after medical school, completed general surgery residency training at Yale University, followed by fellowship training in surgical oncology at MD Anderson. I was introduced to SAAS shortly after starting as faculty at USA in 2018, and I am currently a member of the Publications Committee. As one of the only 2 women and the only 2 minority surgeons in the Department of Surgery, the community and mentorship that SAAS provided became invaluable to me. We are studying progression in academic surgery, and our results show that there are a number of Asian women surgeons who may not be involved with either SAAS or AWS, who report a feeling of isolation and significant barriers to progression. As the SAAS Representative to AWS, in addition to liaising with other societies, I hope to showcase SAAS as an avenue for community, mentorship and sponsorship to this group of people.
Tammy Holm
Nominated by Syed Ahmad
It is a pleasure to write a very strong letter of recommendation for Dr. Tammy M. Holm, MD, PhD for her nomination as the SAAS liaison to AWS. Tammy is passionate about elevating opportunities for women and minorities in surgery. She has demonstrated this at our institution by serving as a mentor to female and under represented students and residents. Dr. Holm currently serves as an Assistant Professor in the Division of Surgical Oncology at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine. I recruited Tammy to the University of Cincinnati several years ago. Prior to this, she was a staff surgeon at the Newton Wellesley Hospital with an academic appointment at the Massachusetts General Hospital. In summary she has been an Assistant Professor since 2015. During her time in Cincinnati, she has excelled as a clinician, researcher, and educator. Tammy received her undergraduate degree at Boston University graduating with summa cum laude honors, her MD and PhD from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, and received post graduate/ residency training at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital. She subsequently completed a fellowship in Endocrine Surgery at the Massachusetts General Hospital. During her research period at Hopkins, she published in very high impact journals such as Nature Genetics, Science, New England Journal of Medicine, and Nature of Medicine. I recruited Dr. Holm in 2019 to establish an endocrine program and a research lab within our department of surgery. She has been highly successful on both fronts. From a clinical standpoint she has distinguished herself as a superb and skilled surgeon and has brought to our department an endocrine program that has greatly benefitted our division and our residency. She has accomplished this by working and partnering with our head and neck surgeons. From an academic standpoint, Tammy has an active and productive basic science lab, and is mentored by Dr. Jun Lin Guan, the chair of cancer biology. Her lab focuses on the autophagy pathway in thyroid cancers. Clinically, she has developed a robust clinical practice focused on endocrine diseases and has been a valuable member of our Department of Surgery. As an educator, she has mentored both medical students and residents and serves as an excellent example for others to model their own careers. She has also established clinical databases that has led to the publication of multiple papers and national lectures. In total she has published over 30 articles and chapters. Her reputation has also grown nationally, evidenced by her being asked to serve on editorial boards and to write invited chapters for major surgical texts. Dr. Holm is exceedingly bright and has an excellent understanding of biological principles. In this age of increasing impact of molecular biology on therapeutic decisions, she is able to apply these principles to patient care. From a personal point of view, Dr. Holm practices by the highest moral and ethical standards. It is without hesitation that I recommend Dr. Holm for this leadership position. I have no doubt she will represent SAAS and the AWS well.

Vote (1 vote)

85
AWS Representative

Thanks for your vote!

Program Committee – Active Member

Statements

Aslam Ejaz
I am writing to express my interest for the SAAS Program Committee membership for the upcoming academic year. I am an Assistant Professor of Surgery at The Ohio State University in the Division of Surgical Oncology. My clinical practice is focused on the treatment of patients with liver, biliary, pancreas and other gastrointestinal malignancies through innovative minimally-invasive robotic surgery techniques. I am also a health services researcher and my research efforts are focused on assessing and improving the delivery of high value goal-concordant cancer care. Furthermore, I run several clinical trials focused on the multidisciplinary and personalized approach to cancer care. As an active member in SAAS and a past member of the scholarship committee, I am grateful to the society’s goal of cultivating, nurturing, and supporting the advancement of Asians in academic surgery. I was immensely honored to be awarded the 2019 SAAS Junior Faculty award and look to further contribute to supporting the society’s goals and objectives. As a member of the program committee, I am excited to work with the other committee members in developing, planning, and expanding the scope of future annual meetings. I have mentored several residents in research work that was presented at previous SAAS meetings and am aware at how valuable and important the scientific program of this meeting is. If selected, I would be greatly honored to be one of the SAAS program committee members. Please let me know if I can provide any additional information.
Zhi Ven Fong
I’m a HPB surgical oncologist at Mayo Clinic Arizona. I completed my general surgery residency at MGH and surgical oncology fellowship at Dana Farber Cancer Institute. During residency, I obtained an MPH from Harvard School of Public Health, and a PhD from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health where I’m also presently an adjunct assistant professor. I have been a SAAS member since 2013, and have attended almost every annual meeting. I’ve served terms on the scholarship and program committees as an associate member, and won the resident development and highest scoring SAAS abstract award in separate years. As I transition to an active member, I’d love to contribute to the program committee. My HSR training places me in a good position to fairly review abstracts submitted to the annual meeting. I’d also like to survey the membership to better understand their desires and needs to help formulate the best annual meeting program the following year. I very much appreciate your consideration for this position.
Samir Gadepalli
I am currently a pediatric surgeon and fellowship program director at University of Michigan. I have been with SAAS for several years and have presented at several sessions. Though I have served as a moderator at several national meetings (American Pediatric Surgery Association, American College of Surgeons, SBAS, and others), I have not had an opportunity to contribute on any Program Committee. My goal would be to learn how the meetings work as we will be serving as host in several years.
Amir Ghaferi
Thank you for considering my nomination to the Program Committee. It would be an honor and privilege to serve SAAS in this capacity as I am eager to engage further with the membership of the Society. I have attended several SAAS meetings and have found the sense of community, purpose, and enthusiasm to be contagious and essential to promoting the ideals of academic surgery. As a Program Committee member I look forward to supporting the leadership in preparing for the outstanding Annual Meetings. As a Past President of the Association for Academic Surgery, I have witnessed first hand how impactful our committee members can be in shaping the future of the organization and its membership. I hope I can serve SAAS in some way to give back and further the goals of the organization. Thank you again for the consideration.
Tammy Holm
As an academic surgeon, with an active basic science lab and strong clinical research interests, I am committed to contributing to the conversation regarding the science of surgery. I enjoy problem-solving and therefore like to read and discuss current strategies that address common problems which we as providers manage in our day-to-day. I always look forward to hearing the work presented at this meeting each year. As a SAAS Program Committee member, I would be devoted to creating an enriching, diverting, and diverse program that serves to stimulate and educate our membership.
Emily Keung
I am a surgeon-scientist specializing in the multidisciplinary care of patients with soft tissue sarcoma. I completed medical school at Harvard Medical School, general surgery residency at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and surgical oncology fellowship training at MD Anderson Cancer Center, and joined the MD Anderson faculty in 2019. I have been a member of SAAS since 2016, and served on the Scholarships Committee and as Liaison to the Association of Women Surgeons. As a trainee and junior faculty, I have benefitted greatly as a member of the SAAS community and I hope to have the opportunity to continue to contribute to SAAS as a member of the Program Committee.
Aarti Mathur
I am an Associate Professor of Endocrine Surgery at Johns Hopkins and would be honored to serve on the program committee for SAAS. I have a sincere interest in mentorship of residents, fellows, and faculty and currently serve as our department’s Associate Vice Chair for Faculty Development. As a member of the program committee for SAAS, I hope to grow this passion and help incorporate these values into the program to inspire and support fellow Asian American Surgeons. This would involve creating meaningful panels with engaging speakers, addressing relevant and contemporary topics, and highlighting research by our members. One of my other goals if selected to serve on the program committee is to engage many of our under-represented surgical sub-specialists to attend our meetings through developing a program that will be inclusive of their interests. I would love to serve either on the program committee for SAAS or as the liason to the Association of Women Surgeons. Thank you for your consideration.
Thuy Tran
I am a first-generation Vietnamese-American surgeon who was the first person in my family to attend college and become a physician. I am a surgical oncologist who joined UC Irvine as Assistant Professor of Surgery in September 2022. I attended medical school at UCSD and completed surgery residency at University of Illinois Chicago. I received fellowship training in Complex General Surgical Oncology at City of Hope Medical Center. I have been prolific with presentations and publications at major societies including American Surgical Association, AAS/SUS, and SAAS. I am an active SAAS member and have attended prior SAAS meetings in person. I want to be more involved with SAAS by serving in the Program Committee. I hope to review submitted abstracts and assist with selection of abstracts for the annual meeting. I hope to promote submission of high-quality abstracts for future meetings. I look forward to contributing meaningfully to this organization.
Anthony Yang
I first became involved with SAAS at the luncheon in Chicago in 2015, have been a member of SAAS since 2016, and have attended almost all of the annual meetings. I have always found SAAS to be one of the most valuable societies to be a member of, not only for my own development and for the people I have met, but also for the same opportunities for junior faculty and trainees that are not easily afforded by other societies. After having served on other committees, but not having been formally involved recently, I would be honored to continue being involved with SAAS as a member of the Program Committee. I recently ended my term as Chair of the Program Committee for the AAES and would love to bring my experience from serving in that role to contributing to the SAAS Annual Meeting and the scientific program.
Sai Yendamuri
As a surgeon-scientist, I have an active practice in complex thoracic surgical oncology as well as a laboratory that has been continuously federally funded for 12 years. I serve on the Thoracic Surgery Foundation, the AATS Scholarship Committee and Chair the Career Development Committee of the Eastern Cardiothoracic Surgery Society. I am comfortable with peer review as I serve on the Editorial Boards of five journals and have published 190 manuscripts. I am a Professor with tenure. I joined SAAS in 2021 and have attended the annual meeting in 2022. I am attending the annual meeting in 2023. My trainees are presenting their work both years. I intend to be as actively engaged with the society as I have the opportunity to do so. While I am aligned with the larger goals of the organization, I would like to increase thoracic surgery participation in the organization.
Esther Yung
This is my third year participating as a member of SAAS, and I would like to become more involved with the society. I have traditionally always joined committees that geared towards education (SAGES CE/RAFT committees, ASE, ABS etc.), but have never worked on a programme committee. My current involvement with SAAS includes presentations at prior meetings, as well as moderating a session at the 2022 meeting. This year I will be moderating another session as well as help with the Simulation lab. I would like to join the SAAS Programme Committee to increase my experience/ exposure to education at a national level and hone my organisation skills. I’m also interested in learning the structure and running of SAAS, and the business strategies behind the scenes. Engaging in such activities will aid me in future leadership roles I hope to fulfill as I navigate a career in surgical education. Thank you for the opportunity to apply for the position on the SAAS Programme Committee. I believe I will be of impact with this committee.

Vote (3 positions available – make up to 3 selections)

208
Program Committee-Active Member

Thanks for your vote!

Program Committee – Associate Member

Statements

Sanjana Balachandra
I was born in Brooklyn, NY but grew up all over Texas. I went to UT Southwestern in Dallas, TX for medical school and completed 2 years of surgery residency at SUNY-Downstate in Brooklyn, NY. Currently, I’m a postdoctoral research fellow in Endocrine Surgery at UAB. I have extensive leadership experience, most notably as a national board member for the Organization of Student Representatives branch of the Association of American Medical Colleges. Through this role, I helped plan the yearly Learn, Serve, Lead conference, which is one of the largest conferences in academic medicine. I believe this experience will be beneficial in my role on the program committee. I am a new SAAS member this year, and my goal on the program committee would be to plan a networking social event for new members to meet and connect.
Neal Bhutiani
Thank you for the opportunity to submit my name for the SAAS Program Committee. I completed CGSO fellowship at MD Anderson, where I am currently an Advanced Colorectal Surgical Oncology fellow. In fellowship, I have built upon my PhD in immunology by exploring the intratumoral virome and microbial modulation to augment chemotherapy response in colon and rectal cancer. I would leverage this background and future surgeon scientist career to augment the basic and translational programming in our SAAS annual meetings. My previous SAAS involvement includes the SAAS Resident/Fellow Development Award (2021) and Scholarships Committee service (2021- present). As a member of the program committee, I aim to encourage high-level submissions to the SAAS annual meeting and build a program that reflects the depth and breadth of work being performed by the SAAS community. Moreover, I hope to leverage our annual meeting to facilitate mutual collaboration on all levels to share research ideas, tips for academic success, and opportunities for multi-institution initiatives.
Marissa Kuo
Nominated by Paul Kuo
Marissa Kuo is an Honors graduate of UVA in American history, AOA graduate of Emory school of medicine and current PGY3 categorical gen surg resident at Vanderbilt. She has been accepted as a VA Quality Scholars Fellow for AY 2024-2026. She will be an involved, engaged and committed member of the committee.

Vote (1 position available – make 1 selection)

76
Program Committee-Associate Member

Thanks for your vote!

Publications Committee – Active Member

Statements

Steven Chao
Nominated by Varuna Sundaram
Dr. Chao and I only recently heard about SAAS and became active members in the last year, but we have quickly realized how important this organization is to us and I know Dr. Chao is very passionate about becoming more engaged in the society. As the recently appointed head of the Research Council in our General Surgery residency, he has helped lead our students, residents and faculty to several national presentations and publications since taking over in the past two years. Most importantly his leadership has helped to sustain our Level 1 status as a trauma hospital. He is a colorectal surgeon and while the bulk of his interests are in that, he has also help to spearhead a healthcare disparities research arm specifically looking at the quality of care our predominantly Asian community in Flushing, Queens receives due to language barriers and healthcare literacy across multiple specialties. Being a member of the SAAS Research committee will help him gain more experience in writing and editing and understand the background in research. I know this will help him to continue his efforts here in our institution and I hope to help further grow the SAAS community and organization.
Romeo Ignacio
The Society of Asian Academic Surgeons has been an instrumental organization that has greatly assisted me in various academic advancements. SAAS supported my nomination as an Associate Editor for the Journal of Surgical Research. It awarded me two scholarships: the SAAS Mid-Career Award and the SUS/SAAS Leadership Agility Award. I currently serve as a member of the SAAS scholarship committee. I have extensive experience in various publications committees such as AAP, AAS, SUS, and WPTC. I am currently the APSA Chair of the Publications Committee. My sincere intention is to continue my active involvement in this organization and be an active leader. I wish to serve SAAS as a member of its Publication Committee to gain insights and further experience. It is my hope to one day serve as the recorder for this great organization.
Alex Kim
I am an academic surgical oncologist with clinical focus in complex GI oncology including peritoneal surface malignancy and a basic/translational research interest in investigating the genetic and molecular mechanism of colorectal cancer peritoneal metastasis. Stemming from my own practice and research, I am intimately involved in process of dissemination of novel findings and publication of our work. In addition, I currently serve as an ad-hoc reviewer for journals including JAMA Surgery, Frontiers in Oncology, Annals of Surgical Oncology, and Surgery and serve as an editorial board member for Surgical Oncology Insight. It is my goal through the publication committee to further serve SAAS with a timely review of submitted manuscripts in association with the annual meeting. With my commitment as a member of the communication committee coming to an end, it is my desire to continue active contribution to SAAS through the publication committee.

Vote (3 positions available – make up to 3 selections)

129
Publications Committee-Active Member

Thanks for your vote!

Publications Committee – Associate Member

Statements

Christina Bae
I’m excited about the potential opportunity to contribute to SAAS through the Publications Committee. I have been involved in multiple standing committees during my undergrad at Dartmouth, in addition to at my current institution (Medical College of Georgia). My strengths in organization, meticulousness, and orchestration of institution-wide initiatives make me a great candidate for this position. Additionally, I have been deeply engaged in research since my undergraduate years, and it would be an honor to be able to take part in crafting the official journal of SAAS. This invaluable opportunity will give me an insight into the publication process, perfectly in line with my goal to become an academic surgeon. With this first step, I am hoping to learn and aid in SAAS’s mission of enhancing the development of Asians in academic surgery.
William Lee
I would be honored with the opportunity to serve as an associate member on the Publications Committee. As an aspiring academic surgeon, I am currently in the midst of two years dedicated to the development of foundational research skills in the basic science lab of Dr. Eugene Kim. This includes the communication of novel research findings through effective scientific writing, as well as the critical appraisal of available literature. With an understanding of the importance of sound research methodology in basic science and clinical outcomes research, I would bring enthusiasm to this position with prompt and comprehensive reviews – with the ultimate aim of contributing to the high scientific standard set by this society and its members. Thank you very much for your consideration!
Muhammad bilal Mirza
In my role as an Associate member of SAAS, I am thrilled to convey my genuine enthusiasm for the chance to serve on the Publications Committee over the next two years. My professional background in translation research and clinical research equips me with the vital analytical and critical thinking skills necessary to make meaningful contributions to the committee’s central mission. Throughout my tenure, my foremost objective is to bring forth the unwavering dedication and meticulous attention to detail to the Publications Committee’s activities. I am firmly committed to ensuring the punctual and rigorous evaluation of manuscripts stemming from the Annual Meeting, thereby upholding the impeccable standards of the Society’s Official Journal. I aim to foster a spirit of collaboration among committee members, streamline our processes for enhanced efficiency, and explore avenues to amplify the publication’s reach and influence. I am genuinely excited about the opportunity to be part of SAAS’s ongoing success through this role. My dedication to maintaining the Society’s unwavering commitment to excellence in scholarly publications is unwavering, and I look forward to contributing my skills and expertise for the benefit of our esteemed organization.
Mytien Nguyen
I am excited to apply to be a member of the Publications Committee. My name is Mytien Nguyen and I am an 8th year MD-PhD candidate at Yale School of Medicine Department of Immunobiology. As an aspiring surgeon-scientist from a first-generation low-income background, I am passionate about advocating for equitable surgical workforce and health outcomes. To achieve these goals, I have dedicated my training to research as advocacy, engaging in education and clinical research, learning from surgical mentors, and mentoring younger medical students. This passion has led to publications in a broad range of journals, including JAMA, JAMA Surgery, and Annals of Surgery. I’ve also had the privilege to serve as a reviewer in several journals, including JAMA. I am excited to further develop this passion as a member of the SAAS Publication Committee, to incorporate trainee voices and developing research education to promote the next generation of surgeon-scientists.
Sarah Suh
Nominated by Sarah Park
I am writing to nominate Sarah Suh for the publications committee. Sarah Suh is a 3rd year general surgery resident at MCW beginning her research years and aspiring academic MIS surgeon. She has been involved in MIS research since medical school with publications including a randomized controlled trial regarding preoperative carbohydrate loading in bariatric surgery and a retrospective review on postoperative nausea in bariatric surgery. She is working with Dr. Kindel to study methods to improve heart failure with preserved ejection fraction after sleeve gastrectomy in humans and rodent models, for which she won an NIH R38 award. She is a great coresident and friend and a dedicated member of the residency wellness committee, organizing several events such as the holiday party. She is new to SAAS and looking to get more involved. Sarah would be an ideal candidate for this position, and I give her my strongest recommendation.
Kanhua Yin
I am a categorical general surgery resident at the University of Missouri – Kansas City with a long-standing interest in surgical outcomes research. I obtained an MPH in biostatistics and epidemiology at Harvard and worked as a research fellow at MGH Surgery before starting residency training. My research focuses on leveraging national surgical databases to quantify population-level outcomes and identify risk factors for thoracic aortic aneurysms, primary cardiac tumors, and infective endocarditis. I have published more than 80 peer-reviewed publications to date, and two of my first-author papers have been included in the 2019 European abdominal aortic aneurysm guideline and 2022 ACC/AHA aortic disease guideline, respectively. In addition, I have been actively involved in academic editing and gained considerable experience as an academic editor. I serve on the editorial boards of the Journal of Surgical Research and Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery. I also serve as a reviewer for multiple major cardiovascular surgery journals, such as Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Annals of Thoracic Surgery, and European Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery. With these experiences and my passion for serving the SAAS, I hope I can join the publications committee. My goals encompass elevating the society’s publication platform to new heights of excellence, promoting interdisciplinary exchange, and fostering the emergence of young voices, especially residents’ voices, in the surgical field. I hope to provide residents with more opportunities for academic communication and publication through platforms such as conferences, journals, and social media. At the same time, attract a group of like-minded residents to form a community with a strong academic atmosphere so that they can benefit more from the guidance and help of other senior SAAS members.
Emily June Zolfaghari
My name is Emily June Zolfaghari and I am writing to express interest as the Associate Member for the Publications Committee. I am a PGY-3 General Surgery resident at Yale New Haven Hospital. My professional and personal goals align well to become selected for the Publications Committee for SAAS. On a personal level, I would like to heighten my knowledge and learn first-hand about the peer-reviewed publication process by being an active board member. By reviewing articles for the Official Journal of the Society, I hope to have the opportunity to interact with authors, reviewers, and fellow board members to make a larger impact within academic surgery. Furthermore, reviewing manuscripts for SAAS will enhance my critical sills, depth, and insight for formulating research-study designs. Lastly, I would like to promote more diversity and representation of individuals of Asian-decent in the field of surgery, via research and knowledge-sharing, and feel that being selected as the Associate Member of Publications will be beneficial for my professional development while also building a sense of community within the national SAAS organization.

Vote (1 position available – make 1 selection)

75
Publications Committee-Associate Member

Thanks for your vote!

Communications Committee – Active Member

Statements

Carlos Chan
I am a surgical oncologist focusing on pancreatic cancer and peritoneal surface malignancies and have an active basic/translational science research laboratory and clinical trial portfolio. I have served in a number of membership, program, CME, research committees of various surgical societies. I have been an active SAAS member since 2018 and awarded the 2022-2023 SAAS Visiting Professorship. I am active in social media and often tweet/retweet about SAAS activities. I am hoping to join the communications committee and help highlighting SAAS activities and members’ update/achievement in newsletter and social media platform, which can attract surgical trainees and medical students and drive up our membership.
Jessica Liu McMullin

I am thrilled to submit a nomination for the communications committee. I have been attending SAAS Annual Meetings since 2018 and currently serve as a member-at-large for the SAAS Foundation. SAAS is an organization that has had a profound impact on my career, and I am eager to give back to this organization by participating on the communications committee. When I was a resident, I founded and served as the Chairperson of the Social Media Committee from 2020-2022 and co-managed the Emory Surgery Twitter account for 5 years from 2017-2022 as well as all residency recruitment outreach through social media. I am passionate about SAAS and its mission and would strive to use my time on the communications committee to promote our members, highlight the incredible talent in our membership body, keep our members informed and updated, and further grow SAAS’ social media presence.

Carmen Tong
I’m the current communications and dissemination co-chair for the UAB AAPI Faculty Association Committee and I’m on the Societies for Pediatric Urology Social Media Task Force. I also help manage the UAB Department of Urology Twitter account. My goal is to continue harnessing the platform of social media to engage more Asian surgeons and allies to join SAAS while effectively communicate with current members. In addition, I think I can help SAAS reach a wider audience as a urologist- according to the 2022 American Urological Association annual census, there are nearly 2000 urologists in the country who identified as Asian (14% of the workforce)! SAAS has the potential to reach across multiple specialties in medicine and elevate AAPI surgeons, and I’d like to be a part of that.

Vote (2 positions available – make up to 2 selections)

115
Communications Committee-Active Member

Thanks for your vote!

Communications Committee – Associate Member

Statements

Terry Gao
I am writing to express my interest in the Communications Committee-Associate position. My background as a surgical resident, combined with my passion for effective communication and engagement, makes me well-suited for this role. During my time at the Health Design Lab at Thomas Jefferson University, I served as a Co-Director for the Independence Blue Cross Hackathon, developed an 8-month social media outreach strategy for the event, and coordinated communications with industry sponsors and 3,000+ event participants. I also have a graphic design concentration and am pursuing an MBA at Temple University during my dedicated research time. The objectives of SAAS align perfectly with my passion for promoting diversity and representation within the academic surgical community, and I believe I will be able to leverage my communication skills and creativity to enhance SAAS’s growth through strategic and compelling communications. Thank you for considering my application.
Sarah Park
Nominated by Sarah Suh
I would like to nominate Sarah Park because she is an excellent communicator and has been an active member of SAAS as a resident. She is a fantastic listener and is engaging. She is well aware of the strengths of those around her and would be a wonderful person to help highlight these elements to SAAS and the surrounding community. Her written communication is also a major strength of hers and I believe that she would produce high quality content in the Society newsletter and all social media platforms.
Gopika SenthilKumar
I am currently working with Dr. Dudeja, Dr. Shao, and Dr. Dream to increase the medical student specific events/opportunities available through SAAS. Thus far, this has involved organizing and moderating SAAS-Sips events and a tweet chat aimed at increasing trainee engagement. I am also helping establish collaborations with APAMSA and SAMSA to increase our student membership base. At the 2022 annual meeting, I assisted Dr. Kothari with the early career event and advocated for trainee-focused initiatives to combat feeling “othered” in an article published in the SAAS-edition of JSR. Through my work within SAAS and other national societies, I have gained invaluable experiences in (1) organizing national events via zoom/social media, (2) creating marketing materials such as flyers, websites, newsletters, etc. and (3) establishing collaborations with identify-focused national societies. As part of the Communications Committee, I hope to sustainably establish and advertise programs/opportunities for our trainee members and contribute to the overall outreach efforts of SAAS. I have personally benefitted immensely from the opportunities, mentorship, and sponsorship that SAAS has provided, and I am dedicated to giving back to the organization and spreading these opportunities to my peers throughout my term.

Vote (1 position available – make 1 selection)

77
Communications Committee-Associate Member

Thanks for your vote!