s many of you know, for most of his professional life, John Stone has worn the "double harness" of literature and medicine, an easy fit, he says, because the two have so much in common, both being concerned, at heart, with the human story. For most of his professional life, John also has tweaked our collective conscience as physicians -- reminding us in poems and essays about the beauty and privilege of our daily work as doctors and the sacred wisdom imparted by our patients.
Having recently stepped down from his role as director of admissions and associate dean of student affairs in the medical school, John is now able to adjust his harness, lightening his administrative load to focus more on writing. Fortunately for us, he is also assuming a new role as a consultant on teaching and as a special liaison to faculty emeriti and to you, our alumni.
There is no one more qualified to understand your concerns and needs. John has long been recognized as one of our best, most dedicated teachers. Just this year, he received the coveted, alumni-sponsored Evangeline Papageorge Teaching Award, the latest of many such tributes to his gift for teaching. In the past, he has also received the Medical Alumni Association's Award for Distinguished Professional Achievement, the university's Thomas Jefferson and Scholar/Teacher awards, and the Best Clinical Professor Award (the latter, three separate times). The list could go on and on.
But more important than such a list is the depth to which John has shaped the educational experience, both here at Emory and beyond. He was founding director of our residency program in emergency medicine (see cover story) and spent 15 years working full time at Grady Hospital, a setting that provided much fodder for his writing about patients and what they taught him. He created a highly sought-after elective in ethics ("Human Values in Medicine") and founded one of the country's first medical school courses in literature and medicine. He also co-edited On Doctoring, a literary anthology distributed annually to every medical student in the country, courtesy of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
Just as John has deftly taught the art of communicating with patients, so we hope he'll help us master the art of dialogue with our alumni, a two-way process that we view as both crucial and of enormous mutual benefit.
Working closely with Phil Hills and Sally Millett in our office of Development and Alumni Relations, John will travel to alumni events outside the Atlanta area as well as speak to alumni locally. I hope your paths may cross. I also hope you will tell us what's on your mind, what's happening in your life, how we can serve you better, how we can work together to the benefit of our patients as well as our profession.
Thomas J. Lawley
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Web version by Jaime Henriquez.