The Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society (AΩA) Board of Directors has named Bradley E. Barth, MD, FACEP, FAAEM, its new Executive Director, effective December 1, 2023. Dr. Barth will be the seventh Executive Director of the Society since its inception in 1902.
Dr. Barth served as an At-Large member of the AΩA Board of Directors and has been involved with AΩA for more than a decade, first serving as the Chapter Councilor at the University of Kansas School of Medicine (KUSM) for seven years, and on the Councilors’ Task Force for six of those years. As a member of the Councilors’ Task Force, he was instrumental in working with Councilors and Board members to update the AΩA Constitution to recognize in the election of new members the highest levels of excellence, character, trustworthiness, leadership, professionalism, scholarship, and service, and to support elections that are inclusive, diverse, and equitable. The AΩA Board of Directors accepted the Councilors’ Task Force recommendations and amended the AΩA Constitution in October 2020.
While a Councilor at KUSM, Dr. Barth increased the number of newly elected AΩA students traditionally underrepresented in medicine from 6% to 24%, a trend that has continued since he stepped down as Councilor in 2022. His work on diversity, equity, and inclusion at KUSM has been used as an example of a best practice for numerous other AΩA Chapters across the country.
“The AΩA Board of Directors is delighted that Dr. Barth has accepted the Board’s offer to be the next Executive Director of AΩA,” said Holly Humphrey, MD, president, AΩA Board of Directors. “While we will miss Dr. Byyny, his leadership has provided a solid foundation for Dr. Barth to advance our Society into the future.”
“I would like to thank the Search Committee and Dr. Steven Wartman, immediate past president of AΩA, for their guidance and stewardship as we worked through the search process for the new Executive Director,” added Lynn Cleary, MD, AΩA At-Large Board member, and Chair of the Executive Director Search Committee. “The Committee received numerous applications, interviewed many outstanding applicants, and offers its unanimous support to Dr. Barth as the next AΩA Executive Director.”
Dr. Barth grew up in rural Kansas and graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in biology. He went to medical school on a Navy Health Professions Scholarship, and was inducted to AΩA in 1994 as a student at the University of Kansas School of Medicine. He is an Emergency Medicine physician having completed an internship in internal medicine at the Naval Medical Center of San Diego, and a residency in emergency medicine at the University of California San Francisco Fresno.
Following his internship and flight training, Dr. Barth served as the Flight Surgeon for the Black Stallions of Helicopter Combat Support Squadron FOUR, based out of Sigonella, Sicily. During his Naval career, he received the Navy Achievement Medal, the Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, the NATO Medal, the Meritorious Unit Commendation, the Overseas Service Ribbon, and was named the Atlantic Fleet Flight Surgeon of the Year.
Dr. Barth has been active in faculty development for the KUSM since 2014. He has co-created many longitudinal faculty development programs including Doctors as Educators, Teaching for Excellence, and the Academic Excellence Development Program. He also developed the SOM Exit Interview Program, the New Faculty OnBoarding Program, Mentor Matching Program, and Pandemic Panel Discussion Series, and played a role in bringing coaching into the KUSM curriculum and to the campus.
Dr. Richard L. Byyny (AΩA, Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, 1964) became Editor of The Pharos in 2010. He also served as the Executive Director of Alpha Omega Alpha from 2010 through 2023. He served on the AΩA Board of Directors from 1995 – 1999. He received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Southern California, where he was elected to AΩA. Dr. Byyny received his internal medicine training at Columbia University, and completed an endocrinology fellowship at Vanderbilt University. He served as head of the Division of Internal Medicine training program at the University of Chicago from 1971–1977. He then moved to Colorado to head up the Division of General Internal Medicine and serve as Vice-Chairman of the Department of Medicine. After holding administrative positions as Executive Vice-Chancellor for the University of Colorado (CU) Health Sciences Center, and as Vice President for Academic Affairs and Research/Dean of the CU System, he became Chancellor of the University of Colorado at Boulder, serving from 1997 through 2005.
Dee is Chief of Staff and Managing Editor of The Pharos. She joined the AΩA National Office in 2015. Before coming to AΩA, she served the Colorado Department of Human Services (CDHS) as Deputy Executive Director of Enterprise Partnerships where she oversaw the Department’s 67 Boards and Commissions, operations for all 64 Colorado counties, communications, legislative affairs, and client services and controlled correspondence. Prior to joining CDHS, Dee was the Director of Public Relations and Marketing for Denver Health, Denver's public safety net hospital. She has also served in the Public Affairs Office at the University of Colorado Boulder, and the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center. Dee holds a master’s degree in Integrated Marketing Communications from the University of Colorado Boulder, and a bachelor’s degree in Biology from Metropolitan State University of Denver. She has more than 25 years of experience working in communications, marketing, advertising, and public relations with an emphasis on issues management and crisis communications. Dee is a LEAN Black Belt with extensive experience in process management and the identification and elimination of waste in the workplace. She completed Leadership Training through the University of Denver and is disaster response certified by FEMA.
Libby Appel is the AΩA Programs Manager overseeing all 13 AΩA fellowships, grants, and awards. She graduated from Missouri State University with a bachelor’s degree in Communications. Libby has had a very diverse career path having been a sales representative, flight attendant, stay-at-home Mom, Girl Scout service unit manager, administrative assistant, development coordinator, and office manager. She came to AΩA from the Colorado AIDS Project where she was in charge of the organization’s donor database. She also worked in development raising money for people living with HIV/AIDS, and assisted with events.
Laurie Goss is the AΩA Graphic Designer for The Pharos, AΩA Monograph, and other electronic and print design needs. She has 25 years experience as a designer in the health care and medical field. She began her career at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center where she spent 25 years working in the School of Medicine, Department of Nursing, and Public Relations and Marketing department. She also ran her own design business for seven years before she took a position at Denver Health for the last 12 years. Laurie attended the Art Institute of Colorado, and received a bachelor’s degree in Communications from the University of Phoenix.
Lori Kerr is the Director of Member and Chapter Services and Communications Manager for AΩA. She graduated from Kansas State University with a degree in Consumer Econ. She has more than 20 years of experience in office and event management. Lori’s career path has led her from event management in the software industry, to education, and design review coordination for a metro district. Her free time fun includes adventures with her family, traveling, cooking and photography.
Halie Martinez is the Executive Assistant and Office Manager for the AΩA National Office. She joined the AΩA team in 2022. Halie has a Bachelor’s degree in Athletic Training, a Master’s degree in Sports Management and holds a Colorado Teaching Licensure in Elementary Education. Her career passions lie in customer service and servant leadership. In her free time, Halie enjoys spending as much time as possible with her husband, 1 year old son, and their black lab. Her favorite activities include traveling, hiking, camping, hunting, fishing, running, and reading.