Fellows #1-6 reunited at ASC 2023 (and photobombers mom and dad Dr Chen/Lindeman)

Our group had a strong showing at the 2023 Academic Surgical Congress in Houston TX! In addition to presenting our research and learning from other leaders in academic surgery, we love this meeting for getting to have a reunion with our former graduates! Fellows #1-6 were able to reunite and catch up at the UAB social at the Buffalo Bayou Brewing company (with photobombers Drs. Chen and Lindeman aka the fellows endocrine surgery “mom” and “dad”). 

New York Fellow Exchange 

Our Endocrine Surgery Fellow Dr. Jessica McMullin recently participated in a fellow exchange in New York City. She spent time visiting Columbia working with Drs. Jennifer Kuo and James Lee, as well as visiting NYU working with Drs. Kepal Patel and Insoo Suh.

While in the big apple, Dr. Herb Chen and his family also joined for some delicious meals between UAB and the Columbia and NYU groups. Thanks to Columbia and NYU for hosting our fellow and we look forward to welcoming Dr. Lina Hu in April to visit us at UAB! 

Dr Feibi Zheng at UAB as the AAES Visiting Professor

We were thrilled to welcome Dr. Feibi Zheng from Baylor as our AAES Visiting Professor on Nov 15 2022. She gave a fantastic grand rounds presentation on “Quantifying Value in Surgery” and we appreciated getting one on one time with her and the residents/fellows/faculty to chat all things endocrine surgery and cost effectiveness in surgery. We also enjoyed a delicious dinner with her at Helen! 

Dr. Andrea Gillis is Awarded Prestigious National Cancer Institute Grant

Dr. Andrea Gillis, our current AAES endocrine surgery fellow has been awarded the prestigious National Cancer Institute Early-stage Surgeon Scientist Program Grant for her study “Molecular Influences of Racial Disparities in Neuroendocrine Tumors.” She will spend the three years exploring the genomic influences on Neuroendocrine biology. Dr. Gillis has also recently been elected to the Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Committee for the American Association of Endocrine Surgeons and will use her DEI expertise to inform her basic science work. We are so proud of our fellow and can’t wait to see the trajectory of her incredible career!

Dr. Brenessa Lindeman named Secretary of the Association for Academic Surgeons

This year’s Academic Surgical Conference was full of proud moments for us at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. Our residents submitted the highest number of total abstracts, won the resident jeopardy and robotics competitions, and our own Marvi Tariq took home the AAS Outstanding Research Resident award! Among our proudest moments, however, was when our own Brenessa Lindeman was elected to serve in the prestigious national leadership role of Secretary for the Association for Academic Surgery. Dr. Brenessa Lindeman is an exceptional role model for our trainees and a leader in research and education in Endocrine Surgery. We are so proud and honored to have her on faculty!

UAB Surgery Raises Money for the AAES Foundation

This week, UAB Endocrine Surgery participated in the Virtual Art and Experience Auction to benefit the American Association for Endocrine Surgeons Foundation. Our own Herbert Chen served along with Dr. Janice Pasieka of the University of Calgary as our venerated auctioneers. An amazing time was had by all bidding on items including (but not limited to):
Scotch Tasting with Dr. Quan Duh of UCSF, Waterskiing with Dr. Herb Chen and Dr. Carmen Solorzano of Vanderbilt University, and Painting and Wine with Dr. Janice Pasieka and Dr. Steve Libutti from Rutgers. Over 16,000 dollars was raised in one night for this incredible organization.

See the list of amazing art pieces purchased by our faculty below!

The Endocrine Surgery crew, enjoying some excellent Birmingham food and getting ready to bid our hearts out!


Original artwork by artist Corrine Smith, purchased by our own Dr. Jessica Fazendin


Print of Dr. William Halsted’s original drawing of the blood supply to the parathyroids, purchased after the most intense bidding war of the night by our own Dr. Brenessa Lindeman!
Original watercolor by Dr. Walter Pories, purchased by Harriet and Herbert Chen

UAB Endocrine Surgery Research Group Takes on Chicago

Our UAB Endocrine Surgery Research Group flew the coop to Chicago last week to attend the annual Society for Asian Academic Surgeons meeting. Nine abstracts were presented by our talented faculty and trainees. SAAS label bourbon, hand selected from Riff Distillery by our own Herbert Chen was enjoyed by all with bottle purchases benefitting the SAAS foundation.
We congratulate our presenters. Way to represent UAB!

Dr. Andrea Gillis presenting her work on parathyroid disease
Our UAB crew enjoying a well deserved dinner out!
Sampling of the limited edition SAAS label bourbon!

Full List of Abstracts:

Assessing Surgeon Competence: Finding The Ideal Tool
Mr. John Bode, Dr. Herb Chen, Dr. Britney Corey, Dr. Danielle Sutzko

Is Preoperative Imaging Localization Necessary For Tertiary Hyperparathyroidism?
Dr. Rongzhi Wang, Dr. Herb Chen, Dr. Brenessa Lindeman, Dr. Jess Fazendin

Lessons Learned from Redo-Redo-Parathyroidectomy: Third Time’s the Charm?
Dr. Kimberly Ramonell, Dr. Brenessa Lindeman, Dr. Herb Chen, Dr. Jess Fazendin

Leadership development among junior surgery residents: communication and perception at different levels of training
Dr. Connie Shao, Ms. Grace Kennedy, Ms. Courtney Rentas, Dr. Herb Chen, Dr. Jess Fazendin

Ethnic Representation in Genomic Studies of Gastroenteropancreatic Neuroendocrine Neoplasms
» Mr. Brendon Herring, Dr. Herb Chen, Dr. J. Bart Rose

Notch1 regulates the cancer stem cell population in pancreatic neuroendocrine tumors
» Dr. Rachael Guenter, Ms. Yichen Guo, Dr. Bin Ren, Dr. Herb Chen

Ranking NIH Funding of Surgical Departments Based Upon a Modified Index
Mr. Sherif Helmey, Dr. Ashley Holder, Dr. J. Bart Rose, Dr. Herb Chen

Asian American Surgical Leaders: How SAAS Made the Difference
Ms. Grace Kennedy, Dr. Emily Austin, Dr. Herb Chen, Dr. Jess Fazendin

Vitamin D Deficiency is Associated with Single Gland Parathyroid Disease
Dr. Andrea Gillis, Dr. Kimberly Ramonell, Dr. Brenessa Lindeman, Dr. Herb Chen, Dr. Jess Fazendin

Dr. Andrea Gillis Begins her AAES Fellowship in Endocrine Surgery

Dr. Andrea Gillis eating the traditional inaugural fellow meal of lamb Parmesan at Gianmarco’s.

We welcome Dr. Andrea Gillis as our AAES Endocrine Surgery fellow for the 2021- 2022 academic year. Dr. Gillis is joining us from the Albany Medical College in Albany, NY. We are delighted to have such a talented and productive researcher and clinician joining our group and we  look forward to seeing all that you accomplish this year, Dr. Gillis!