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Berkman, Schwarz join Vanderbilt Spine Center

Feb. 25, 2016, 9:55 AM

Neurosurgeons Richard Alan Berkman, M.D., and Jacob Schwarz, M.D., have joined Vanderbilt Spine Center, where they will begin seeing patients March 1.

Richard Alan Berkman, M.D.

The two physicians come to Vanderbilt from Neurological Associates in Nashville.

The Vanderbilt campus is familiar territory for Berkman. He did his residency in Neurological Surgery here after finishing his undergraduate degree from Harvard University and his medical education at New York University School of Medicine.

After completing a fellowship in complex spine surgery at Emory University Medical Center, he returned to Vanderbilt as an assistant professor of Neurosurgery from 1994 to 1997.

Jacob Schwarz, M.D.

His wife, Stacey Goodman, M.D., is a professor of Medicine in Hematology and Oncology at Vanderbilt. His daughter, Jillian Berkman, is a second-year student at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.

Thinking about his daughter being in medical school inspired him to want to teach again, he said.

“I have always loved teaching and I have missed the stimulation of the residents,” Berkman said. “I will be bringing my clinical practice to Vanderbilt where I can share with the residents the attributes fundamental to a successful practice. I am so grateful that Dr. Reid Thompson has given me this wonderful opportunity to return to Vanderbilt.”

Schwarz, a graduate of Washington University, received his medical education at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine, where he did his residency and obtained advanced specialty training in neuro-oncology and complex spine procedures.

Schwarz became a neurosurgery instructor at Johns Hopkins before he went into private practice.

“I miss the excitement, energy and inspiration that come with working together with the rest of the Spine Center team at a major academic center,” Schwarz said.

“I am trained in the complex surgeries necessary to help patients suffering from tumors of the spine, deformities of the spine and effects of degenerative changes. I cannot wait to make my contributions to an amazing group of professionals at all stages of their careers as they move our important field forward.”

Schwarz’s wife, Anna Hemnes, M.D, is an assistant professor of Medicine and assistant director of the Pulmonary Vascular Center at Vanderbilt.

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