January 27, 2011

Trumpet Awards sound for Churchwells

Featured Image

Brothers Keith Churchwell, M.D., left, André Churchwell, M.D., and Kevin Churchwell, M.D., are being honored with 2011 Trumpet Awards this weekend. (file photo: Dana Johnson)

Trumpet Awards sound for Churchwells

Vanderbilt cardiologists André Churchwell, M.D., and Keith Churchwell, M.D., along with their brother, Kevin Churchwell, M.D., are among the 2011 Trumpet Award honorees who will be recognized at a three-day, black-tie event in Atlanta this weekend.

Initiated in 1993, the annual Trumpet Awards celebrate and honor African-American achievers, and the spotlight shines on the Churchwells for their contributions to the field of medicine.

Other honorees include the Rev. Al Sharpton, Judge Greg Mathis, U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder and musical group the O'Jays.

André Churchwell, associate professor of Medicine and Radiology, graduated magna cum laude from Vanderbilt University with a degree in Biomedical Engineering and later graduated from Harvard Medical School.

He completed his internship, residency and cardiology fellowship in Atlanta at Emory University, where, in 1984, he was the first African-American named as chief resident of medicine at Grady Memorial Hospital.

He came to Vanderbilt in 1991 and is the associate dean for Diversity in Graduate Medical Education and Faculty Affairs.

“As in most things like this, this is all a reflection of our parents and our upbringing and what they ingrained in us. We're standing on their shoulders as we always do,” he said.

“What we've been able to do in our lives is purely a direct reflection of what they've challenged us and pushed us to do.”

Keith Churchwell, associate professor of Medicine and Radiology, graduated from Harvard University in 1983 and attended Washington University School of Medicine, where his interest in cardiovascular medicine was ultimately piqued.

He later completed his training at Emory University School of Medicine and affiliated hospitals and was also chief resident at Grady Memorial Hospital. He came to Vanderbilt in 1998 and is the executive director and chief medical officer of the Vanderbilt Heart & Vascular Institute.

“Our parents conveyed to us that it's very important to have goals and to achieve them and to have service as an important part of your adult life,” he said.

“Science is a means to an end. My suspicion as to why we gravitated to medicine is because medicine allows you to use skills that are both inherent and learned. It's about people, it's about listening and it's about communication.

“Those attributes that make a successful medical career drew all of us to take this pathway.”

Kevin Churchwell is the former CEO and executive director of the Monroe Carell Jr. Children's Hospital at Vanderbilt. He graduated from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1983.

He attended medical school at Vanderbilt and went on to complete his residency and training programs at Children's Hospital in Boston. He left Vanderbilt in November 2010 to become the new system senior vice president and CEO of the Nemours/Alfred I. duPont Hospital for Children in Wilmington, Del.

The Trumpet Awards, through the generosity of its co-sponsors, has generated nearly $4 million to charitable and educational causes.

Assistance from the Trumpet Award Foundation has helped hundreds of students pursue their education.