EDITORS NOTE: A high resolution photo of Dr. Muta Issa is available upon request. Emory urologist Muta Issa, MD, FACS, MBA, was awarded the prestigious Ellis Island Medal of Honor on Saturday, May 14 during an official award ceremony in Battery Park, New York. The award recognizes Americans of diverse origins for their outstanding personal and Professional contributions to the United States. The Ellis Island Medals of Honor are sanctioned by the United States Congress and recipients' names are listed in the Congressional Record.
Past honorees of the award, presented by the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations, have included six U.S. Presidents, three Nobel Prize winners, and a number of distinguished citizens including Secretary of State Madeline Albright, General Colin Powell, and Mayor Rudolph Giuliani. Celebrities who have previously received the award include Mohammad Ali, Frank Sinatra, and Bob Hope.
"This is truly a great honor for someone of my humble beginnings and background, and I'm overwhelmed as I read the list of previous recipients, "says Dr. Issa, associate professor of urology, Emory University School of Medicine, and chief of urology at the Atlanta Veterans Affairs (VA) Medical Center. "I'd like to thank my friends, family and colleagues at Emory University and the Atlanta Veterans Affairs Medical Center. They have nurtured my personal as well as professional life, and given me the opportunity to contribute to my patients, society, and country."
Dr. Issa was nominated for the award by Tony Charaf, senior vice President of Technical Operations for Delta Air Lines. Mr. Charaf is active on the board of the Goizueta Business School at Emory, and an invited speaker to their MBA and Executive MBA classes.
"Dr. Issa is an outstanding immigrant who has distinguished himself as a citizen of the United States for his ingenious service to humanity," says Mr. Charaf. "As a skilled surgeon, author, and a man with great vision and courage, Dr. Issa is well deserving of this honor."
Fray Marshall, MD, professor and chairman of the Department of Urology, Emory University School of Medicine, adds: "Dr. Issa has made Innovative contributions to the field of urology and has been invaluable in directing the urology service at the Atlanta VA hospital. We are proud to work with him."
A native of Iraq, Dr. Issa moved to Ireland at the age of 15 to attend high school and later medical school. He graduated with honors distinction from the Royal College of Surgeons in Dublin, followed by two years of general surgical residency training. He moved to the United States in 1987 where he obtained his urology residency training at Johns Hopkins University Hospital and Stanford University Medical Center.
In 1997, Dr. Issa was appointed as an assistant professor of urology, Emory University School of Medicine, and also as chief of urology at the Atlanta Veterans Affair Medical Center. In 2000, he was promoted to a tenured associate professor at Emory and in 2004 earned a Masters in Business Administration from Goizueta Business School, Emory University.
Dr. Issa is nationally and internationally known in the field of Academic and clinical urology. He pioneered radiofrequency thermal therapy of the prostate and was the first urologist in the United Stated to perform the procedure in 1994. He is a sought-after lecturer and an accomplished author, having written and contributed to numerous book chapters in major textbooks, dozens of scientific journal articles, presented numerous papers at both regional and national professional meetings and written a book titled Contemporary Diagnosis and Management of Diseases of the Prostate.