News Release: School of Medicine, School of Public Health

Oct. 28,  2008

James M. Hughes, Emory Public Health Expert, Elected Vice President of Infectious Diseases Society of America

James M. Hughes, MD, professor of medicine and public health at Emory University, has been elected vice president of the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA). The announcement was made Sunday at the 48th Annual ICAAC/IDSA 46th Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C.

Hughes serves as executive director of the Southeastern Center for Emerging Biologic Threats (SECEBT); director of the Emory Program in Global Infectious Diseases; senior advisor, Emory Center for Global Safe Water; and senior scientific advisor for infectious diseases, International Association of National Public Health Institutes (IANPH).

"This is a tremendous and well-deserved honor and responsibility for Dr. Hughes," says David S. Stephens, MD, vice president for research in Emory's Woodruff Health Sciences Center and director of the Division of Infectious Diseases in Emory School of Medicine. "Dr. Hughes' leadership will be particularly important in this era of global emerging diseases in which public health expertise is essential."

Prior to joining Emory in June 2005, Hughes worked for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), serving as director of the National Center for Infectious Diseases (NCID) and as a rear admiral and an assistant surgeon general in the U.S. Public Health Service. He first joined CDC as a member of the Epidemic Intelligence Service in 1973. He served as director of CDC's Hospital Infections Program from 1983 to 1988, as NCID deputy director from 1988-1992, and as NCID director from 1992-2005.

Hughes received his BA and MD from Stanford University and completed his postgraduate training and board certification in internal medicine (University of Washington), infectious diseases (University of Virginia), and preventive medicine (CDC). He is a member of the Institute of Medicine (IOM) as well as numerous other national and international professional societies. He served on the Board of Directors of the Infectious Diseases Society of America from 2004-2007 and is currently a member of the Council of the American Society for Tropical Medicine and Hygiene.

Among his honors and awards are the Distinguished and Meritorious Service Medals and the Surgeon General's Exemplary Service Award from the U.S. Public Health Service; the Secretary's Open Forum Distinguished Public Service Award from the Department of State; the CDC Lifetime Scientific Achievement Award; and the Gen--Probe Joseph Award from the American Society for Microbiology for "exemplary leadership and service in the field of public health."

IDSA represents over 8,200 physicians, scientists and other health care professionals who specialize in infectious diseases. Its purpose is to improve the health of individuals, communities and society by promoting excellence in patient care, education, research, public health and prevention programs relating to infectious diseases.


The Robert W. Woodruff Health Sciences Center of Emory University is an academic health science and service center focused on missions of teaching, research, health care and public service. Its components include schools of medicine, nursing, and public health; Yerkes National Primate Research Center; the Emory Winship Cancer Institute; and Emory Healthcare, the largest, most comprehensive health system in Georgia. The Woodruff Health Sciences Center has a $2.3 billion budget, 17,000 employees, 2,300 full-time and 1,900 affiliated faculty, 4,300 students and trainees, and a $4.9 billion economic impact on metro Atlanta.

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