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June 2013


Carolyn Acker came to Emory on November 1, 2006 and will be leaving exactly 7 years later. She split her first two years working half-time at Grady, in the outpatient clinic, and half-time at Emory seeing outpatients for medication and therapy.  She was the only psychiatrist then seeing a significant number of outpatients at The Emory Clinic, and began working full-time there in 2008 with the goal of developing a faculty-staffed outpatient clinic.  The mission was to serve Emory faculty and staff, their families, and the patients of other Emory physicians.   The program grew to approximately 4 FTE psychiatrists, seeing almost 1,000 new patients annually.  Also during this time, she completed the 2-year program at Emory in psychoanalytic therapy.

Jeff Newport completed his residency at Emory. He then worked in the Women’s Mental Health Program for many years before serving as the director of that program. He will be assuming the position as Vice Chair for Research in the Department of Psychiatry at The Ohio State University.

Thaddeus (Tad) Pace, Assistant Professor, will move to the College of Nursing at the University of Arizona for the Fall Semester.  He will also have a joint appointment in the Department of Psychiatry in the College of Medicine at Arizona. Tad began a postdoctoral fellowship in Andy Miller's lab in 2004, and became Assistant Professor in the Department in mid 2006. In 2007 he joined the Neuroscience Faculty of the Graduate Division of Biological and Biomedical Sciences in the Laney Graduate School. His work at Emory has focused on biological mechanisms linking psychological stress to illness, and novel ways to combat stress to promote optimal health. He has studied the molecular mechanisms of endocrine-immune interactions, endocrine and immune system changes in people who suffer from stress-related psychiatric illness (including major depression and posttraumatic stress disorder), and endocrine and inflammatory immune alterations as a result of adverse early life experience. Informed by this work, Tad has investigated interventions that impact inflammatory, endocrine and psychological responses to stress, such as Compassion Meditation in adults and foster care children (with Chuck Raison, Lobsang Tenzin Negi, and Linda Craighead), as well as novel natural anti-inflammatory compounds and their analogs. He has co-mentored two Neuroscience PhD students, has served on multiple dissertation committees, and has mentored several undergraduates including a recent senior thesis project. Tad looks forward to joining the community of biobehavioral health researchers at Arizona. He will continue to study the positive impact of contemplative interventions on stress-associated biological and psychological endpoints relevant for health as well as other psychosocial intervention programs designed to improve inter and intrapersonal endpoints. This work will continue to involve foster care children and will be in collaboration with faculty at the Frances McClelland Institute for Children, Youth, and Families. He will also continue to study novel natural compounds, including curcumin, in the context of illness and psychological stress. Despite relocating to Tucson, Tad will maintain several healthy and productive collaborations with members of the Department and others at Emory for years to come.


Major Leadership Appointments, Activities and Achievements

Bobby Elliott is President Elect of the Atlanta Psychoanalytic Society.

Claire Coles has been invited to join the School of Medicine Promotions Committee.

Jared DeFife has been appointed as the Interim Director of the Outpatient Training Program (OPTP). Jared came to Emory in 2009 as a Research Scientist in the Department of Psychology studying psychiatric diagnostic methods and personality disorder assessment.  He joined the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences faculty first as an Adjunct Assistant Professor in 2011, then as Assistant Professor in 2013.  He is a scientific affiliate of the Emory University Psychoanalytic Institute.  As a psychologist with the Emory Transplant Center, Jared works with patients and their families throughout stages of the organ transplantation process and is interested in the contribution of personality factors to health maintenance behaviors and the use of psychotherapy for navigating and thriving through complex medical conditions.  Before arriving at Emory, Jared earned his master's and doctoral degrees in clinical psychology from Adelphi University and completed a two year postdoctoral fellowship with the Program for Psychotherapy at Harvard Medical School/Cambridge Health Alliance.  He is an incoming associate editor for the Journal of Personality Assessment, an editorial board member of the journal Psychotherapy, and a regular blog contributor for Psychology Today
Toby Goldsmith, who has been a member of the Emory Faculty since June 2006, has been appointed as the Interim Director of the Women’s Mental Health Program.  Her work has long been in the area of outpatient psychiatry, primarily working with individuals with mood and anxiety disorders.  At both the University of Cincinnati and Florida she headed up their women’s mental health program, and she continued this work as well as general psychiatry when she arrived at Emory.  Toby considers herself primarily a clinician, but her past includes involvement with medical education; she served as a course director for the third year medical student rotation in Cincinnati and was an associate residency training director at Florida.  It is Toby’s hope to continue the excellent clinical work of Zach Stowe and Jeff Newport, while assisting others whose research involves the clinic’s patient population. 


None reported


Joe Cubells was awarded a grant from Simons Foundation Autism Research Initiative (SFARI) entitled Prenatal folic acid and risk for autism spectrum disorders.

Mar Sanchez and Mark Wilson just learned that they had a 5-year R01 funded by NIH/NICHD entitled Stress and obesity synergize to impair neurobehavioral development in females.

Mar Sanchez was invited to join the Review Editorial Board of Frontiers in Behavioral Neurosciences Journal.

Csapo, I., Davis, B., Shi, Y., Sanchez, M., Styner, M., & Niethammer M. (in press). Longitudinal image registration with temporally-dependent image similarity measure. IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging.

Felger J. C., Mun, J., Kimmel, H. L., Nye, J. A., Drake, D. F., Hernandez, C. R., Freeman, A. A., Rye, D. B., Goodman, M. M., Howell, L. L., & Miller, A. H. (2013). Chornic interferon-α decreases dopamine 2 receptor binding and striatal dopamine release in association with anhedonia-like behavior in nonhuman primates. Neuropsychopharmacology. doi: 10.1038/npp.2013.115

Garlow, S. J., Kinkead, B., Thase, M. E., Judd, L. J., Rush, J., Yonkers, K. A., Kupfer, D. J., Frank, E., Schettler, P. J., & Rapaport, M. H. (2013). Fluoxetine increases suicide ideation less than placebo during treatment of adults with minor depressive disorder. Journal of Psychiatric Research.doi: 10.1016/j.jpsychires.2013.05.025

Heim, C. M., Mayberg, H. S., Mletzko, T., Nemeroff, C. B., & Prussner, J. C. (2013). Decreased cortical representation of genital somatosensory field after childhood sexual abuse. American Journal of Psychiatry, 170, 616-623. doi: 10.1176/appi.ajp.2013.12070950

Koch, H., McCormack, K., Sanchez, M. M., & Maestripieri, D. (in press). The development of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis in rhesus monkeys: Effects of age, sex, and early experience. Developmental Psychobiology. PMID:23192465.

McGrath, C. L., Kelley, M. E., Holtzheimer, P. E., Dunlop, B. W., Craighead, W. E., Franco, A. R., Craddock, C., & Mayberg, H. S. (2013). Toward a neuroimaging treatment selection biomarker for major depressive disorder. JAMA Psychiatry.doi: 10.1001/jamapsychiatry.2013.143

Raper, J., Wilson, M., Sanchez, M., Machado, C. J., & Bachevalier, J.  (in press). Pervasive alterations of emotional and neuroendocrine responses to an acute stressor after neonatal amygdala lesions in rhesus monkeys. Psychoneuroendocrinology.  PMID:23148887.

Jeff Rakofsky presented a poster entitled “Cognitive effects of Quetiapine XR in patients with euthymic bipolar disorder,” at both the NCDEU conference in Hollywood, Florida and the International Conference of Bipolar Disorders conference in Miami Beach, Florida.

Honors, Awards, Rankings

Ted Anfinson received the Medical Student Teaching Award – Faculty.

Vivianne Aponte received the Outstanding Teaching Award from the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Sammye Brown received the Outstanding Clinical Supervisor Award.

Marianne Celano received two outstanding supervisor awards, one from the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Division and the other for the Psychology Division – CHOA.

Katie Davino received the Outstanding Clinical Supervisor Award.

Jared Defife was selected for a competitive fellowship to the New Haven Research Training Program that is hosted by the Yale Child Study Center in partnership with the University College of London. The program provides scholars interested in psychodynamic perspectives an opportunity to meet with experienced US and international clinical research investigators towards developing new research projects and forging ongoing consultations and collaborative studies. 

Glenn Egan received the Outstanding Supervisor Award from the Grady Psychology Division.

Bobby Elliott recently became a Fellow of the American Psychiatric Association.

Gene Farber received the Richard Morrell Award for Outstanding Community Service.

Scott Firestone was selected as a Top Doc in Atlanta Magazine.

Leah Habib received the PGY-1 Teacher Award.

Larry Jiustra was selected as a Top Doc in Atlanta Magazine.

Nadine Kaslow received the Psychiatry Residency Educator of the Year Award.

Steve Levy was selected as a Top Doc in Atlanta Magazine.

Helen Mayberg has been selected to deliver the 2014 Distinguished Faculty Lecture at Emory. This is one of Emory’s highest honors.

Jeff Newport received the PGY-4 Teacher Award.

Jeff Rakofsky was selected to attend the 1st annual NIH-sponsored Workshop on Metabolomics to be held at the University of Alabama in Birmingham. 

Mar Sanchez received the Excellence in Faculty Mentorship Award from the Emory Neuroscience Graduate Program.

Larry Tune was selected as a Top Doc in Atlanta Magazine.

Ray Young received the PGY-2 Teacher Award.

Quality and Safety Initiatives

None reported

Development Achievement and Capital Campaign Initiatives

None reported

Community Benefit Programs and Activities


Nadine Kaslow – (1) WXIA TV – Reducing the mental health stigma; (2) – Standard approach to privacy issues for mental health care still elusive; (3) Simply Buckhead Magazine- What’s up doc? (4) New York Times-Clues in the Cycle of Suicide

Ray Kotwicki – WABE – Local experts encouraged by President’s speech on mental health

Helen Mayberg: (1) Nature – Brain scan predicts best therapy for depression; (2) Fox News – Treating depression: One size doesn’t fit all; (3) Time – Talk therapy or antidepressant? A brain scan predicts which works best for your depression

Michael Morrier: (1) WSB-TV – Emory studies autism blood test; (2) Georgia

Health News – Looking for a blood test for autism

Seth Norrholm – VA Media Center – Conditioned fear extinction and

generalization in post-traumatic stress disorder

Kerry Ressler – (1) National Geographic – Phenomena: Only human; (2) Wired UK – Drug prevents PTSD in mice when injected post-trauma


Jessica Cohen received the Medical Student Teaching Award for a Resident.

Andrea Crowell presented her work entitled Using Standardized Patients to Teach Agitation Management with Rob Cotes at the 4th Annual Science of GME Projects Day.

John Douglas presented at the 4th Annual Science of GME Projects Day his work with Rob Cotes entitled Results and Prospectives Utilizing Motivational Enhancement Therapy to Connect Patients with Psychiatric Services. He also received the Forensic Seminar Scholar Award.

Rachel Goldberg presented her work entitled Trainee Awareness of the Cost of Prescription Medications with Rob Cotes and Jennifer Wootten at the 4th Annual Science of GME Projects Day.

Bo Houston was awarded the American Psychoanalytic Association Fellowship, which is designed to provide outstanding early career professionals additional knowledge of psychoanalysis.

Ahmed Khan has been selected to receive the APA/SAMHSA Minority Fellowship for 2013-2014.

Yilang Tang, along with Bill McDonald, Rob Cotes and his Chinese colleagues, won the best paper award of the Journal of Electroconvulsive Therapy.  Yilang was invited as a co-guest editor for the Chinese Journal of Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment for a lecture series: Updates on Alcohol-related Disorders, which will include 14 papers focusing on different aspects of ARDs.  He was also involved in the development of the Chinese Guidelines for Alcohol-related Disorders, sponsored by Chinese Association of Drug Abuse Prevention and Treatment.

Maria Thottungal won the award for the Outstanding PRITE Exam Score. 

Arshya Vahabzadeh is the recipient of the first ever American Psychiatric Association Resident Recognition Awards.

Arshya Vahabzadeh, Justine Wittenauer, and David Goldsmith presented their work entitled Social Media and the Portrayal of Antidepressant Medication with Ann Schwartz at the 4th Annual Science of GME Projects Day.

Tang, Y. L., Xiang, X. J., Wang, X. Y., Cubells, J. F., Babor, T. F., & Hao, W. (2013). Alcohol and alcohol-related harm in China: Policy changes needed. Bull World Health Organ, 91, 270-276. doi: 10.2471/BLT.12.107318.

Arshya Vahabzadeh, MD. Minority children with autism lack access to specialists. CNN Health June 17, 2013

Vahabzadeh, A., & McDougle, C. J. (2013). Maternal folic acid supplementation and risk of autism. JAMA, 309, 2208. doi: 10.1001/jama.2013.4876. PubMed PMID:


Chevelle Brudey will be an Emory Geriatric Psychiatry Fellow.

Lauren Butterfield has accepted a position as a Child Psychiatrist at the Georgia Care and Counseling Center.

Amy Hostetter will be joining the Northwest Behavioral Medicine private practice group.

Alex Sawicki will be opening a private practice and will specialize in treating adults and doing combined medication and psychotherapy. She plans to continue her advocacy and research related to physician health.

Nadia Sawicki will be going into private practice in Atlanta and will be an Emory Psychoanalytic Institute candidate.

Nisha Shah will be working part time as at the Atlanta VA in the Trauma Recovery Program and will have a part-time practice doing refugee work.


Paige Brodnax received the Outstanding Coordinator Award from the Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry.

Marcus Tillman received the Toastmasters International Competent Communicator Award. Toastmasters is a non-profit educational organization that focuses on communication and leadership development.