Brady to Succeed Miller as Senior Associate Dean and EVP for Educational AffairsOct. 15, 2018, 2:43 PM
by John Howser
After more than three decades of service to Vanderbilt, Bonnie Miller, MD, MMHC, Senior Associate Dean for Health Sciences Education at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine and Executive Vice-President for Educational Affairs at Vanderbilt University Medical Center, has decided to retire from her leadership positions on July 1, 2019.
Miller will be succeeded in these roles by Donald Brady, MD, Senior Associate Dean for Graduate Medical Education (GME) and Continuing Professional Development, and VUMC’s Senior Vice President for Educational Affairs.
After leaving these roles, Miller will remain on the faculty full time to help with a variety of special projects. She plans to stay involved with medical student activities and serve as an adviser for individuals and student organizations.
Miller, who is also professor of Medical Administration and Clinical Surgery, has served on VUSM’s faculty continuously since 1987 and describes the decision to step down as personal.
“I remain deeply grateful for the tremendously rewarding career I’ve had here at Vanderbilt. At this point, however, I hope to be able to focus my efforts on specific interests, and I also hope to spend more time with my family,” she said. “With Donald coming into these roles, I’m completely confident that our educational programs will thrive.”
Brady and Miller have worked closely together for more than a decade leading Vanderbilt’s programs in medical education. Over the coming months they will collaborate with Jeff Balser, MD, PhD, President and Chief Executive Officer of VUMC and Dean of VUSM, to assure a smooth transition of responsibilities.
“In addition to being beloved by generations of students as the senior educational officer at the Medical Center, Dr. Miller’s contributions to our institution have been remarkable,” Balser said. “Bonnie has led with wisdom, creativity, compassion and integrity. Through her energetic and collaborative leadership, our educational programs are a source of national prestige and remain the envy of many of the nation’s finest medical institutions.
“I want to thank Bonnie for her many valuable contributions, and welcome Dr. Brady into these new responsibilities as we initiate this change. Donald is an internationally recognized leader in medical education and is well prepared to succeed Bonnie in these roles. Our programs in Graduate Medical Education are consistently rated among the most desirable in the nation by applicants and faculty leaders at numerous other institutions. Donald continues to play a significant role in elevating the stature of these programs,” Balser said.
Miller first joined VUSM as a teaching faculty member in the Department of Surgery at Saint Thomas Hospital and the Veterans Administration. She was appointed Associate Dean for Medical Students in 1999 and served in that position until 2005, when she was appointed to the newly created position of Associate Dean for Undergraduate Medical Education. In that role, she led the first major curriculum revision at VUSM in over 30 years.
In 2008, at the time Balser was appointed dean, he asked Miller to expand her leadership responsibilities as Senior Associate Dean for Health Sciences Education, assuming responsibility for all aspects of physician education from the admissions process to continuing professional development.
In recognition of her increasing activities in the Medical Center, she was appointed Associate Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs in 2013, and with the reorganization of VUSM and VUMC in April 2016, she became VUMC’s Executive Vice President for Educational Affairs.
Miller’s many accomplishments include overseeing the continued transformation of VUSM’s educational programs into Curriculum 2.0, introducing interprofessional education to VUSM, and leading VUMC’s efforts to increase the effectiveness of continuing medical education. She also supervised efforts that led to attaining accreditation status for VUMC’s Programs in Allied Health. Currently, she is collaborating with Brady and other leaders to bring greater awareness throughout the VUMC community to the importance of advance directives and end-of-life care.
In addition to overseeing all programs related to physician education, Miller oversees administration of the different degrees offered by VUSM, as well as the certificate programs offered by VUMC’s Programs in Allied Health. After guiding VUSM through several cycles of curriculum innovation, her advice on how to transform medical education is sought by other medical schools.
Miller was the principal investigator of a 2010 grant from the Josiah Macy Jr. Foundation that supported the development of the Vanderbilt Program in Interprofessional Education. She also served as the initial principal investigator of the American Medical Association’s Accelerating Change in Medical Education Grant, awarded to VUSM in June 2013, and now serves as co-investigator through the grant’s continuation period. In addition, she is a founding member of the National Transformation Network, a consortium of seven medical schools generously funded by the Kern Family Foundation to transform medical education through the triple aim of character, caring and competence.
Despite her administrative responsibilities, Miller has remained engaged in teaching and mentoring. She directs “Foundations of the Profession,” the first course taken by Vanderbilt medical students, which focuses on health equity and the social determinants of health. She also serves on multiple University and Medical Center committees related to learning and its intersection with the needs of the health care delivery system, a major focus of her current work. She has received numerous awards in recognition of her accomplishments, including the Shovel Award from the 2003 graduating class, the Gerald S. Gotterer Faculty Excellence in Teaching Award for Innovation in Education, and the Southern Group on Educational Affairs Career Educator Award.
“Bonnie has been a transformational leader. Her impact on medical education reaches far beyond the Vanderbilt campus, across the nation and throughout the world,” Brady said. “For me personally, she has been a mentor, a confidante, and, most importantly, a friend. For 10 years, we have met weekly for breakfast to update each other and to grow together in our respective roles. I forever will be in her debt.”
Brady, who is also professor of Medicine and Medical Education and Administration, is VUMC’s Designated Institutional Official for relationships with the American College of Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) and the National Resident Match Program.
He is a graduate of VUSM and completed his residency in internal medicine at Vanderbilt. In 1993, he joined the faculty at Emory School of Medicine and helped establish the school’s internal medicine residency primary care track, serving as director there for a decade.
Brady returned to Vanderbilt in 2007 as associate dean for GME. He is one of six principal investigators for the Macy Foundation’s Regional Conferences on Innovations in Graduate Medical Education and led the southern region conference hosted by Vanderbilt in February 2016. In 2015, he organized the first regional faculty development course co-sponsored by ACGME and a sponsoring institution.
In addition to his administrative roles, Brady works as a general internist. His primary interests are in medical education, doctor-patient communication and physician wellness. He has received numerous teaching awards, including Clinician-Educator of the Year by the Southern Society of General Internal Medicine and has twice been a finalist for the Parker Palmer Courage to Lead Award.
Under Brady’s stewardship, VUMC received the DeWitt C. Baldwin, Jr. Award, co-sponsored by ACGME and the Gold Foundation, recognizing sponsoring institutions exemplary in fostering a respectful, supportive environment for medical education and the delivery of patient care. He currently serves on the board of directors for ACGME, as well as the board’s Executive Committee, Governance Committee, Monitoring Committee, Education Committee, and the Policies and Procedures Subcommittee, the latter two which he chairs.
For Vanderbilt University, in 2016-2017 Brady co-chaired the Chancellor’s Strategic Planning Committee on Mental Health and Well-Being, an effort to develop a strategic plan for for all students, staff, and faculty across the University. He has also served as chair of Vanderbilt University’s Faculty Senate, and currently is serving his second stint as its parliamentarian.
Brady served on ACGME’s Task Force on Physician Well-Being, as co-chair of its Education Subcommittee and co-facilitator of the 2018 ACGME Symposium on Physician Well-Being. He is a fellow in the American Academy on Communication in Healthcare (AACH) and has served as the AACH chair of the board of directors and as president. He served on the AAMC Group on Resident Affairs Steering Committee from 2012-2015 and was chair in 2014.
From 2010-2012, Brady served as a special adviser to Singapore’s National University Hospital System and National Healthcare Group Residency Programs, guiding them in their accreditation effort. He regularly presents nationally on a variety of topics, including aligning the values and needs of residents with institutional priorities and community needs, wellness, overcoming unconscious bias, and other topics in medical education.
“I am excited to have the opportunity to build on the successes that Bonnie has led at both the Medical School and Medical Center. Education is so central to what we all do every day and the more we can integrate the three “legs of the stool” — education, patient care, and research — the better we will be as an institution and the better we will be able to serve our patients and each other,” Brady said.