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EVMS Brock Institute leadership transition announced

Story Date: Mon, 19 May 2014 16:23:00 EDT

Amid celebrating its first year and several successes, the EVMS M. Foscue Brock Institute for Community and Global Health will undergo a leadership transition. Karen Remley, MD, MBA, Founding Director, has completed her commitment to establish the governance, community partnerships, operational infrastructure, and guiding principles of the Institute.

“We were very fortunate to recruit someone of Dr. Remley’ s caliber to provide us with the initial 12 to 18 month commitment needed to start this new institute,” Richard V. Homan, MD, President and Provost of EVMS and Dean of the School of Medicine, says. “She has done a superb job and we could not be more proud of all that has been accomplished in a relatively short time. The Brock Institute has become a vital part of EVMS and will be instrumental in helping us attain our vision of becoming the most community-oriented school of medicine and health professions in the nation.”

Dr. Homan noted that during its first year, the Brock Institute has:

  • Further incorporated community, health equity, social justice and public health principles into the curricula of the various EVMS academic programs
  • Brought EVMS engagement and expertise to the United Way United for Children effort
  • Worked collaboratively to identify needs in the community such as improving elderly fall rates, sudden unexplained infant death rates and bystander CPR rates and then bringing together leaders both inside and outside of EVMS to take actionable and measureable steps to address these issues
  • Encouraged expansion of research efforts with a patient and community centered focus
  • Worked with all Norfolk hospital and city leadership to develop collaborative approaches to tackle obesity in our community

Dr. Remley departs from her role at the Brock Institute on June 12. Moving forward, alumna Cynthia Romero, MD, a member of the Class of 1993, will return to EVMS to lead the institute’s continued effort to leverage EVMS’ clinical, research and educational programs to positively affect specific health priorities in Hampton Roads.

Dr. Romero, a Hampton Roads native, earned her undergraduate degree in psychology at the University of Virginia prior to enrolling at EVMS, where she graduated with a medical degree in 1993. After completing residency training at the Riverside Family Practice Program in Newport News, she established herself as a leader in the region’s medical community. In 2002, she became just the second woman to lead the Norfolk Academy of Medicine in its 135-year history, and in January 2013, she became the state’s leading public-health authority when she was appointed Virginia Commissioner of Health.

“As someone born and raised in Hampton Roads, I am tremendously grateful for the opportunity to serve in this capacity,” Dr. Romero says. “This community has been wonderful to me and I am eager to return that favor.

“I look forward to working with faculty, staff and students on campus and our partners in the community to build on the strong foundation of success established by the Brock Institute in its first year.”

Dr. Romero’s other career accomplishments include:

  • Serving five years as Chief Medical Officer and Vice President for Quality and Medical Affairs at Chesapeake Regional Medical Center;
  • Being installed in 2010 as President of the Medical Society of Virginia, the third woman to hold that position;
  • Serving as President of the Philippine Medical Association of Southeastern Virginia, Inc.;
  • Currently serving as Physician Manager of TPMG Romero Family Practice
  • Holding a faculty position at EVMS as Assistant Professor of Family and Community Medicine; and
  • Being chosen for membership on numerous committees and boards focusing on issues such as obesity and nutrition, veterans’ health, infant mortality, youth health, chronic disease and health information exchanges.

“Obviously we’re proud of all our alumni and their accomplishments. But we’re especially excited to have an esteemed member of the EVMS family return to campus to share her extensive experience with us for the benefit of our community and our students,” Dr. Homan says. “Dr. Romero has much to offer and we look forward to her leadership as the Brock Institute continues its important work.”

Establishment of the Brock Institute was made possible by a $3 million gift from Macon and Joan Brock in honor of Mr. Brock’s late father — a dedicated physician who served the Hampton Roads community. Mr. Brock believes his father’s namesake will be in good hands with its new Director. “Dr. Romero is not only extremely qualified, she brings a tremendous energy to the position. We are eager to see the Brock Institute continue to grow and benefit Hampton Roads under her leadership.”

Dr. Romero started her new position with EVMS in a part-time capacity on May 5.