Faculty and Staff
Robert Bailey, D.O.
Dr. Robert Bailey is a native of Hattiesburg, Mississippi. He is a graduate of the University of Mississippi (B.A.), the University of Southern MS (M.S.), and Kansas City College of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.). He completed a rotating internship at Suncoast Hospital, completed Neurology residency at the University of South Alabama, and he completed his Naval/Marine Flight Surgeon training at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute.
Dr. Bailey has served in general medicine, general neurology private practice, as a neurology consultant and physician with the Mississippi Department of Mental Health, served on active duty with the United States Navy and Army, and has served on four combat tours with the United States Army, earning the Combat Medical Badge as well as the Combat Action Badge. He is a Naval/Marine and Army flight surgeon. Additionally, Dr. Bailey serves with the Alabama Army National Guard as an active reservist. Dr. Robert Bailey joined WCUCOM in 2010 as Professor of Medical Biochemistry.
Robert C. Bateman, Jr., Ph.D.
Dr. Bateman obtained a PhD in Biochemistry from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1985. He then spent three years as a Postdoctoral Fellow in Biochemistry at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas before joining the faculty at the University of Southern Mississippi in 1988. Dr. Bateman retired from USM in June 2011 after 23 years, including the last ten as Chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry.
Dr. Bateman has supervised the research of nine doctoral and six master’s graduates, published over thirty-five scientific articles and been awarded two patents. His research on the enzymology of bioactive peptide synthesis and degradation, the development of rapid sensors for diamines in biological samples, and the educational use of molecular visualization has been supported by funding from the National Institutes of Health, the National Science Foundation, the National Marine Fisheries Service, and others. Dr. Bateman serves as the WCUCOM Course Director for Medical Biochemistry as well as the Director of the WCU Master of Biomedical Science Graduate Program.
Judy L. Caldwell, D.O.
After serving eight years on active duty in the U.S. Navy as a hospital corpsman, Dr. Caldwell went to the University of Hawaii at Hilo, earning a BA in Biology. She received her Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) from the college of Osteopathic Medicine of the Pacific (COMP) in 1995. Her medical training was interrupted for a year each with Operation Desert Storm and a trip to Camp Pendleton; and an Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine (OMM) Undergraduate Teaching Fellowship. She completed a rotating Internship and Family Medicine Residency at San Bernardino County Medical Center, San Bernardino County, California.
In 1994, Dr. Caldwell started as a clinical facilitator for the medical students at Western University of Health Sciences (WUHS)/COMP and continued until 2005. In 1998 and 1999 she participated in the Clinical Performance Exam Development Committee, Department of Family Medicine, at WUHS/COMP.
After residency, Dr. Caldwell held various positions as a Locum Tenens lasting until 2001. From 1999 to 2006, Dr. Caldwell worked in her private Osteopathic Family Medicine Practice in Southern California and continued as a Clinical Preceptor for WUHS/COMP. In 2006, as part of a Medicare demonstration project, she made house calls for Care Level Management in Fresno, California. Dr. Caldwell accepted a teaching position at Touro University Nevada (TUN), College of Osteopathic Medicine, as Assistant Professor of OMM in 2007.
Dr. Caldwell is board certified in Family Medicine and Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine.
Paul Chastain, Ph.D.
Dr. Paul Chastain earned his B.S. in Biochemistry from Indiana University and his Ph.D. in Biochemistry and Biophysics from Texas A&M University. He spent five years as a Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center Fellow and three years as an Environmental Pathology Fellow at the University of North Carolina before joining the Department of Pathology and Laboratory Medicine at UNC as an Independent Investigator. His research focused upon determining the mechanism by which oxidative, UV- and chemical carcinogen-induced damage or DNA instability influence DNA replication, and how that disruption may increase the likelihood of disease onset. His research was funded by National Institutes of Health (NIH), National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), National Cancer Institute (NCI) and pilot project grants from the Center for Environmental Health and Susceptibility in the UNC-Chapel Hill. He published twenty-nine scientific publications, 1 book chapter, two software packages, and one patent.
Dr. Chastain joined WCUCOM in 2013 as an Assistant Professor of Biochemistry and teaches medical biochemistry. His research interests include 1) determining the mechanisms (e.g., intra-S checkpoint, repair pathways) by which the cell protects itself from environmental and endogenous agents (e.g., UV radiation, chemical carcinogens, oxidative stress, environmental pollutants) and how disruption of these protective mechanism increases the chance of cancer and disease formation; 2) working with local, state, and federal organizations and outreach programs to decrease the effects of environmental pollutants on the health of fellow Mississippians; and 3) developing, writing, and implementing computational and mathematical tools (based on Matlab, ImageJ, SQL, C++, and Java) to store, retrieve and analyze biological data and gain critical knowledge from patient specimens.
Nick Griffis, M.S.
Nick Griffis received his B.S. at the University of Southern Mississippi in 1990, then his M.S. at the University of Southern Mississippi in 1993. He teaches courses for the William Carey Biology Department including Anatomy and Physiology I and II, General Biology, and Microbiology. He teaches Clinical Anatomy I and II laboratory, and Maintains the Clinical Anatomy laboratory facility for the College of Osteopathic Medicine. His interest areas include Human Anatomy, Immunology, and Microbiology. He joined the WUCCOM team in 2010.
Dr. Randall Harris earned a Ph.D. in Microbiology and Immunology from Vanderbilt University, where he studied the molecular genetics of adenoviruses. In 1994 he joined the faculty of William Carey University as a member of the Department of Biological Sciences. During his tenure there, he served as chair of the department for nine years. He currently serves as Professor of Biomedical Sciences in the College of Osteopathic Medicine, where he participates in the Medical Genetics and Medical Microbiology courses. He has authored a variety of educational resources in Microbiology, including testbanks and quiz questions for publishers’ textbook websites.
Tanisha Hayes, D.O.
Dr. Tanisha Hayes has an undergraduate degree from Temple University and a Master’s degree from MCP Hahnemann University (Drexel University). Dr. Hayes is also an American Medical Association National Scholarship Recipient (2005) who obtained a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree from University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey School of Osteopathic Medicine (UMDNJ-SOM) in May 2006. After completing an Osteopathic Professional Training Internship (OPTI) in a rotating Intern/Family Medicine Tracked Residency in July 2007 at UMDNJ-SOM, she attended and completed an Anatomic/Clinical Pathology and Laboratory Medicine Residency at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia in June 2011. Subsequently, Dr. Hayes held the Cytopathology Fellowship at the University of Virginia Hospital System in Charlottesville in June 2012, where she participated on the fine needle aspiration service, interdisciplinary tumor boards, and surgical pathology frozen section service. Dr. Hayes co-authored several papers during her pathology residency and presented two of them at the College of American Pathology annual meeting in 2010. Dr. Hayes is a member of multiple professional societies including the American Osteopathic Association, American Society for Clinical Pathology, and the College of American Pathologists. Since her arrival to WCUCOM in 2012, Dr. Hayes has participated in the laboratory/practical portion of the Osteopathic Principles and Practice for year one medical students, fulfilling her lifelong enthusiasm for osteopathy. She has also participated in the clinical and doctoring skills portion of the curriculum at the COM, in addition to duties in the Pathology course.
Jennifer Hotzman, Ph.D.
Dr. Jennifer Hotzman earned her B.A. in Anthropology from the University of Southern Mississippi and her M.A. and Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Florida. She also completed her post-doctorate training at Duke University where she taught Human Gross Anatomy in the Duke Medical School. Her research has included craniofacial biomechanics with a focus on the hard palate.
Currently she is collaborating with researchers at the University of Southern Mississippi and Auburn University on a project involving musculoskeletal markers on the upper limb. She has published her research in journals such as American Journal of Physical Anthropology, Journal of Morphology, and Journal of Forensic Sciences. Dr. Hotzman joined WCUCOM in 2012 as Assistant Professor of Anatomy.
John M. Jones, D.O.
Dr. John Jones received his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree from Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine (University of North Texas). From 1989-1999, he was Chair of the Osteopathic Principles and Practice Department at COMP/WesternU, becoming an Assistant Dean for his last two years there. In 1999-2001, Dr. Jones joined the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine as a Professor and Assistant Dean. From 2000-2001, he served as President of the American Academy of Osteopathy. In 2002, he became a Professor of Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine at the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine. In 2004, he took a position at Touro University Nevada as Professor and founding Chair of the Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine Department. In 2010, he joined WCUCOM as the founding Chair of Osteopathic Principles and Practice and Professor of Family Medicine.
Gabor Legradi, M.D.
Dr. Gabor Legradi graduated from Semmelweis University Medical School in Budapest, Hungary in 1989. Dr. Legradi received postdoctoral training in Neuroanatomy and Neuroendocrinology and became a faculty member at Tufts University School of Medicine. In 2002, Dr. Legradi joined the faculty of the University Of South Florida College of Medicine as an Assistant Professor in the departments of Anatomy and Pathology & Cell Biology where he taught Neuroscience, Gross Anatomy and Neuroanatomy to medical and graduate students. Dr. Legradi has also published a series of peer-reviewed articles focusing on the role of neuropeptides in the brain. His research work has received funding from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health.
Stuart Leonard, Ph.D.
Dr. Stuart Leonard received his Ph.D. in Biology from the University of Memphis in 2002. He then joined the Biomedical Alcohol Research Training Program at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans as a postdoctoral fellow trainee.
In 2005, he received independent research funding from the National Institutes of Health (NIDA) and continued his research in the Department of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics at LSUHSC. During this time Dr. Leonard also lectured in the nursing and dental pharmacology courses; he has also taught anatomy and physiology, endocrinology, and general biology undergraduate courses. He is a member of several professional and honor societies, and has published in multiple peer-reviewed journals. Dr. Leonard maintains research interests in the areas of behavioral pharmacology, neuroendocrinology, and cognitive neuroscience.
Beth Longenecker, D.O.
Dr. Longenecker is a graduate of Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine (OUCOM) and completed her residency training in emergency medicine at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in Newark, New Jersey. She worked as clinical faculty in the emergency department at Brookdale University Medical Center in Brooklyn New York for one year. She then became core faculty in emergency medicine at St Barnabas Hospital in the Bronx, New York. She served as program director for the emergency medicine residency from 2002-2005. In 2005 she moved to Miami and served as program director for the emergency medicine residency at Mount Sinai Medical Center on Miami Beach. She has been a practicing emergency medicine physician for 14 years. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians and is active on the research and the continuing medical education committees for this organization.
Darrell Lovins, D.O., M.P.H., FACOFP
Darrell E. Lovins, D.O., M.P.H., FACOFP serves as course director for Doctoring Skills I and II. He assumed the duties of Dean, William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine on April 1, 2011, after serving as interim Dean and Associate Dean, Clinical Sciences. He graduated from Bethel College (now Bethel University), St. Paul, MN with a degree in chemistry (biochemistry emphasis) in 1978. He received his medical degree from the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine, Kirksville, MO in 1983. Dr. Lovins performed his internship and residency training at the Naval Hospital, Pensacola, Florida, 1983 – 84 and 1986 – 88 respectively. He earned a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Washington, Seattle while completing fellowship training in Faculty Development and Research at Madigan Army Medical Center, Tacoma, WA. In 2007, the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians conferred upon him the Fellow Award.
Dr. Lovins served in the United States Navy for over 26 years retiring in 2005 as a captain. During his career his duties included being: a general medical officer; a family physician; family medicine residency faculty; a medical officer to the USS Lexington and USS Tortuga; and founding and co-founding the department of family practice and family medicine residency at Naval Hospital, Camp Lejeune, NC respectively. He completed his last naval assignment with the Department of Defense Medical Examination Review Board as Chief of Sea Services. His highest personal award is the Defense Superior Service Medal. Upon retirement, Dr. Lovins joined the faculty of the Pikeville College School of Osteopathic Medicine (now University of Pikeville Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine) and the Appalachian Osteopathic Postgraduate Training Institute Consortium (A-OPTIC). He joined William Carey University in 2008 as the Associate Dean, Clinical Sciences. Throughout his career he has been active in training medical students and residents.
Ashwini K. Margaitis, D.O.
Dr. Ashwini Margaitis received her Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree from University of Florida in 2000. She later earned her Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree from Des Moines University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Des Moines, Iowa, in 2004. She completed a Family Medicine internship and residency program at Florida Hospital East Orlando in Orlando, Florida, in 2007. Dr. Margaitis is proficient in Osteopathic Manipulative treatment and has incorporated OMT in her clinical practice.
Ashwini Margaitis was in private practice in Family Medicine in Orlando, FL for 3 years before moving to North Carolina and working in urgent care. She has a special interest in Women’s Health. Dr. Margaitis joined as Associate Professor of Clinical Sciences at William Carey College of Osteopathic Medicine in the fall of 2011.
Richard J. Margaitis, D.O.
Dr. Richard Margaitis received his Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Biology from Florida Southern College of Lakeland, FL in 2000. He later earned his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree from the New York College of Osteopathic Medicine (New York Institute of Technology) in Westbury, NY in 2006. In 2010, he completed his 4 year integrated Family Medicine/Neuromuscular Medicine (NMM/OMM) internship and residency at Florida Hospital East Orlando.
He recently finished a one-year primary care Sports Medicine fellowship at East Carolina University (ECU)/Pitt County Memorial Hospital/Brody School of Medicine of Greenville, NC in June 2011. He worked closely with the ECU Pirate athletes on the sidelines and in the training room diagnosing and treating a multitude of musculoskeletal ailments and injuries. He is board certified in three distinct areas of medicine including Family Medicine, Neuromuscular Medicine, and Sports Medicine.
His other professional interests and experience includes Musculoskeletal Ultrasound utilization for diagnosis and injection procedures, including Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) and Prolotherapy. He has additional training in craniosacral treatment for various medical conditions including migraines, rhinosinusitis, temporomandibular joint dysfunction and coccydynia. Dr. Margaitis joined WCUCOM in 2011 as Assistant Professor of Osteopathic Principles & Practice.
David McWhorter, Ph.D.
Dr. McWhorter comes to WCUCOM as a Professor of Anatomy from Edward Via College of Osteopathic Medicine—Carolina Campus (VCOM-CC) in Spartanburg, SC. While at VCOM-CC he served as the Discipline Chair for Histology and taught gross anatomy, histology, embryology, and neuroanatomy. His academic background includes an undergraduate and graduate degree in exercise physiology from Truman State University and the University of Missouri, respectively. At the time, Dr. McWhorter was a competitive bodybuilder interested in studying the cell and molecular mechanisms of muscle hypertrophy. For several years, he wrote for popular magazines such as Muscle and Fitness and Men’s Health. Dr. McWhorter’s doctorate degree is in biomedical sciences with an emphasis in anatomy from Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine (NEOUCOM, now Northeast Ohio Medical University) in conjunction with Kent State University. While at NEOUCOM, he investigated the neural regulation of the alpha cardiac myosin heavy chain gene in nuclear bag fibers of rat muscle spindles.
Dr. McWhorter later served as an Assistant Professor at Gannon University (Erie, PA) where he directed and taught the cadaveric, prosected gross anatomy course for undergraduate and graduate health science students in physical therapy, occupational therapy, and in the physician assistant program. He also directed the medical histology program at the Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences (KCUMB). At KCUMB, Dr. McWhorter actively participated in the reformation of a traditional discipline-based preclinical curriculum to an integrated clinical presentation curriculum, directing both the preclinical Foundations of Medicine and Integrative course sequences. At the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, Georgia campus (GA-PCOM) and at the Medical College of Georgia, he directed and taught a variety of biomedical course content, including gross anatomy, histology, embryology and neuroscience. He has received teaching awards from the University of Missouri, Northeastern Ohio Universities College of Medicine, Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, GA-PCOM, and VCOM-CC.
Medical education research is the focus of Dr. McWhorter’s scholarship. He has published peer-reviewed medical education papers in various journals such as Academic Medicine, Clinical Anatomy, Journal of the International Association of Medical Science Educators (JIAMSE), and Military Medicine. From 2002 to 2006, Dr. McWhorter served as Associate Editor for the JIAMSE. Currently, Dr. McWhorter reviews manuscripts for the journals, Academic Medicine, Clinical Anatomy, and Anatomical Sciences Education. He has been an active member of the American Association of Anatomists and the American Association of Clinical Anatomists since 1994 and 1998, respectively. For the past decade, he has written anatomy questions for the Comprehensive Osteopathic Medical Licensing Examination (COMLEX), Level I.
Dr. McWhorter and his wife, Karen, enjoy traveling to different all-terrain vehicle (ATV) trails and riding their four-wheelers. They also enjoy spending time with their German shepherd dogs, Mac and Duke. Lifting, running, and stretching daily at the local YMCA is another past-time for the McWhorter family. Dr. McWhorter joined the WCUCOM anatomy faculty in January 2013.
Bobby Middlebrooks, Ph.D.
Dr. Middlebrooks received a Ph.D. from the University of Texas, Southwestern Medical School in 1966. He was a Post-Doctoral Research Associate from 1966 - 1968 at the U.S. Army Biological Warfare Center at Ft. Detrick, Maryland. Dr. Middlebrooks was Assistant Professor of Microbiology at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston from 1968-1972. He then spent two years at the University of New Hampshire (1972-1974) as an Assistant Professor of Natural Science.
In 1974, Dr. Middlebrooks joined the Biological Sciences faculty at the University of Southern Mississippi, where he taught Immunology, Virology, and Microbiology. He is a nationally known researcher and teacher. He served in numerous administrative positions at the University of Southern Mississippi, most recently as Interim Provost (2007-2008). Dr. Middlebrooks joined WCUCOM in 2010 as Professor of Medical Microbiology and Immunology.
Clarke F. Millette, Ph.D.
Dr. Clarke Millette received his Ph.D. in Biochemistry from Rockefeller University in 1975. After completing a two year research fellowship at Harvard Medical School, he remained there for twelve years as an assistant and associate professor. During that time, he taught Anatomy and Cellular Biology and also worked as a staff scientist in the Laboratory of Human Reproduction and Reproductive Biology. After leaving Harvard in 1989, Dr. Millette became a tenured professor of Anatomy and Cell Biology at the University of South Carolina, School of Medicine.
Dr. Millette joined the WCUCOM faculty in April 2010 and has major teaching responsibilities in Histology and Medical Biochemistry as well as participation in courses in Physiology and Neuroscience. Dr. Millette provides his expertise for almost 20 years as a member or chairman for numerous NIH committees, workshops, and review panels. He has worked as an Ad Hoc reviewer for the National Science Foundation and has been an editor or reviewer for more than 13 primary scientific journals. He served on the Program and Admissions Committee at Harvard Medical School for three years, representing two major departments in that capacity. He has served as a mentor for 26 graduate students, 10 postgraduate students, and 10 undergraduate students during his career as a medical researcher and educator. He has also published numerous journal articles and been a continuously NIH-funded researcher from 1977 - 2008.
At WCUCOM, Dr. Millette continues to serve at the national level, being named a reviewer for the PCORI program (Patient Center Oriented Research Initiative) and being chosen as a member of the Editorial Board for the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association (JAOA).
Pearl G. Myers, M.S., M.D.
Dr. Myers' completed her pathology residency at Orlando regional hospital/Florida State School of Medicine in 2005 and finished her pediatric pathology fellowship in 2006 at the University of South Florida School of Medicine/Tampa General Hospital. She began her career after fellowship teaching pathology and histology in a Caribbean medical school until Dec 2009. She joined WCUCOM in Jan. 2010. She is the course director for systemic pathology 1 & 2. Her present research interest is in access to healthcare in south MS. She also serves as chair of the WCUCOM instructional resource/facilities committee. Her past research interests included perinatal/pediatric autopsied where she has written journal articles pertaining to some of her most interesting perinatal/pediatric autopsy cases.
Steve Piper, D.O., FAAEM, UHM/ABEM
Dr. Piper is a graduate of Indiana University - Bloomington where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Telecommunications with an Area Certificate in Film Studies in 1993. He worked as a Certified Nursing Assistant and as a tutor while completing premedical coursework at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, Michigan, graduating with an Associate in General Studies in 1997. He attended Michigan State University College of Osteopathic Medicine on an Armed Forces Health Professions Scholarship, graduating with a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree in 2002. After completing a Transitional Internship at Naval Medical Center San Diego in 2003, he attended the Naval Flight Surgeon Course at the Naval Aerospace Medical Institute in Pensacola, Florida, graduating in 2004. He volunteered for an overseas duty as the only flight surgeon assigned to the clinic at Naval Support Activity Bahrain, home of the U.S. Naval Forces Central Command headquarters, where he provided primary care and aeromedical support during the Global War on Terrorism. He returned to the Gulf South in 2005, serving as a flight surgeon at Training Air Wing ONE in Meridian, Mississippi, for two years prior to completing an Emergency Medicine Residency at University of Mississippi Medical Center in 2010, and an Undersea & Hyperbaric Medicine Fellowship at Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center - New Orleans in 2011. He also did research with the Baromedical Research Institute and clinical work with Van Meter and Associates in Louisiana. At the culmination of his fellowship in June 2011, Dr. Piper presented an overview of hyperbaric oxygen therapy for idiopathic sudden sensorineural hearing loss at the Annual Scientific Meeting of the Undersea & Hyperbaric Medical Society (UHMS), proposing its addition to the list of hyperbaric oxygen therapy indications. It was approved by vote of the UHMS Hyperbaric Oxygen Therapy Committee and ratified by the UHMS Executive Board as the 14th indication in October 2011. Dr. Piper is board certified in both Emergency Medicine and Undersea & Hyperbaric Medicine, his work is published in the peer-reviewed Undersea & Hyperbaric Medicine Journal, and he has presented lectures at several conferences. In March 2012, he and his wife Jennifer welcomed their son Keegan. Dr. Piper felt called to osteopathic medical education and joined the William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine faculty in June 2012.
Johnny R. Porter, Ph.D.
Dr. Porter received his Bachelor Degree in Biology and Chemistry from Western Ky. University (WKU) in 1966. He then followed one of his WKU professors, William Norris, from WKU to the University of Louisiana at Monroe (ULM) where he received a Master’s Degree in Biology under Dr. Norris’s direction. Dr. Porter received his PhD with Dr. Mary Coyne, a physiological neuroendocrinologist at Louisiana State University Medical Center in 1973.
Dr. Porter progressed through the academic ranks at LSUHSC from Instructor of physiology in 1973 to Full Professor of Physiology and Medicine in 1994. He was also made Full Professor of Pharmacology and Neuroscience in the late 1990’s at LSUHSC and Adjunct Professor of Physiology at Tulane Medical School during this same time frame. Dr. Porter was appointed Professor Emeritus of Physiology at the LSUHSC in 2010 upon his retirement and still holds that distinction.
Dr. Porter taught physiology courses in nursing, dentistry, dental hygiene, medical physiology, and graduate endocrinology during his Career at LSUHSC. Likewise he has taught several disciplines of physiology and he has been course director of Nursing, Medical School Physiology, Graduate Endocrinology, Dental Physiology, Dental Hygiene Physiology, a Special Topics in Oral Physiology and others. Dr. Porter was asked to be an adjunct professor of physiology at Tulane Medical School. In this position he has taught summer endocrine classes at Tulane Medical School and he has also taught endocrine control lectures in Biomedical engineering on the main Campus of Tulane.
In research, he has been the mentor to students at all levels as they have trained in his research laboratory. Dr. Porter has personally served as major professor of numerous Ph.D. and Master’s students. In addition, he has served on over 53 Graduate Committees at LSUHSC. He has also mentored several Post-doctoral and resident fellows in medicine and dentistry and over 60 high school students, medical students, dental student and various other student volunteers in his laboratory during his career at LSUHSC.
Dr. Porter has always been active in the regulation of the pituitary adrenal axis as his research interest. In recent years this research interest has been focused on the abnormal regulation of this neuroendocrine axis in obesity and food intake.
Most recently he has been interested in the adrenal steroid, dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA). This steroid is also produced by neurons in the brain as well as the adrenal gland and it is thus classified as a true neurosteroid. He has worked for 25 years with an obese rodent model, the obese Zucker rat. This animal model is an excellent model of human youth onset obesity. This model has been used extensively by Dr. Porter’s lab and other laboratories to emulate the abnormal neuroendocrine regulation downstream of leptin insensitivity in humans. This research has resulted in two invitations for plenary lectures at international congresses (international congress of steroids in Fukuoka Japan and the International Society of Neuropsychiatry in Cancun Mexico) in the past 8 years. Most recently he has been invited to give the prestigious Lancaster-Puckett lecture at his alma mater, Western Ky. University, 44 years post baccalaureate. This research has been well funded by the NIH, the American Heart Association, and the American Diabetes Association. Work on the neuroendocrine control of the hypothalamic pituitary adrenal axis as it relates to premature labor also led to the funding of one of six recent National March of Dimes (MOD) Grants awarded for the 2006-2010 grant cycle. Dr. Porter joined WCUCOM in 2010 as Professor of Physiology.
Dr. Barry Prior graduated from the University of Georgia in 1996 and completed funded Postdoctoral Fellowships at Michigan State University and the University of Missouri. He was made Research Assistant at the University of Missouri. Dr. Prior taught Physiology at Mercer University School of Medicine to first and second year students. His research interests are in skeletal muscle physiology and cardiovascular physiology with special emphasis on muscle energetics and vascular remodeling.
Dennis C Rau, Jr., D.O.
Dr. Dennis C. Rau Jr. received his Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degree in Physical Therapy from the University of New England in Biddeford ME in 1998. He later earned his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree from the Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine in Pikeville, KY in 2008. In 2009 he completed his general rotating internship at Florida Hospital East in Orlando FL and completed his Neuromuscular Medicine (NMM/OMM) residency at St. Barnabas Hospital in NY.
Prior to coming to WCUCOM Dr. Rau utilized OMM in private practice treating a variety of neuromuscular complaints. His professional interests include visceral and cranial manipulation and he has extensive training in these areas. Dr. Rau joined WCUCOM in 2013 as Assistant Professor of Osteopathic Principles & Practice.
Everett A. Roark, Ph.D.
Dr. Roark earned his Bachelor of Science degree in molecular biology from Jackson State. While attending Jackson State he participated in research projects at Jackson State University, the University of Georgia, the University of Missouri-Columbia, the University of Chicago and the Mississippi Medical Center. After graduation, Dr. Roark worked as a research technician at the University of Chicago where he investigated eukaryotic protein trafficking. He earned his Ph.D. in Microbiology and Genetics from Northwestern University.
Dr. Roark has been continuously funded throughout his research career as both a research technician and a graduate student. He has received several awards through his career and has been published in multiple peer reviewed journals. His research interests include protein trafficking, bacterial pathogenesis, cell physiology and genetics. Dr. Roark has taught many biology classes including Genetics, Microbiology, Cell physiology, Graduate Genomics, Bioethics, and Histology. He has developed and taught several courses including online and brick & mortar.
Dr. Roark has taught Medical Genetics and Medical Microbiology since joining the William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine in 2010.
T.G. Sarphie, Ph.D.
Dr. Sarphie received his doctoral degree from the University of Mississippi Medical Center in anatomy/pathology. Prior to accepting his position at WCU-COM, he served as an associate professor of cell biology and anatomy at Louisiana State University. He has received multiple awards for his teaching, is a very successful grant writer and researcher, and has published numerous manuscripts in professional journals.
Richard Sloan, D.O.
Dr. Richard Sloan received his Bachelor of Science (B.S.) degrees in biochemistry and biology from Cook College at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey, in 1999. He later earned his Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine (D.O.) degree from Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 2008.
Dr. Sloan underwent an additional year of medical training while at PCOM, as he completed an Undergraduate Fellowship in Osteopathic Manipulative Medicine. As a fellow, he assisted the faculty in teaching osteopathic principles and practice to medical students, as well as treating patients with osteopathic manipulation in family practice offices throughout Philadelphia. In 2012, he completed his 4 year integrated Family Medicine/Neuromusculoskeletal Medicine (NMM/OMM) internship and residency at Florida Hospital in East Orlando.
Dr. Sloan has taken advantage of multiple opportunities to expand this training and knowledge in osteopathy in the cranial field to aid his patients. Additionally, he has a professional interest in nutrition and its effect on health. Dr. Sloan joined WCUCOM in 2012.
John K. Smith, Ph.D.
Dr. Smith graduated from Boston College in 1994 with a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology. He earned a PhD in Pharmacology and Toxicology from the University of Mississippi Medical Center in 2008 where he published in multiple peer reviewed journals and received several awards including The Charles Randall Research Award and the AACR’s Minority Scholar in Cancer Research Award.
Dr. Smith completed a postdoctoral fellowship in Thoracic Head and Neck Medical Oncology at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center shortly before joining the faculty at WCU-COM in 2011. His research interests include insulin receptor and insulin-like growth factor receptor involvement in tumor development and progression.
J. Keith Speed, D.O.
Dr. Speed Graduated from USM in 1974 with BS in Medical Technology and 1978 received Master of Science in Medical Technology. Worked in several hospitals throughout Mississippi in clinical laboratories where I served as Laboratory Manager. He graduated from WVSOM in 1985 with Doctor of Osteopathy and participated in rotating internship at Metropolitan General Hospital in Pinellas Park, FL. He began practice of Family Medicine in Tylertown, MS in 1986. He has served as preceptor for Family Medicine for students from various osteopathic and allopathic medical schools. He has also have served as medical missionary for the past 24 years throughout Central and South America. He is a medical examiner for the Federal Aviation Administration. He holds membership in the American Osteopathic Association, American College of Osteopathic Family Medicine, American College of Osteopathic Emergency Physicians, Mississippi Osteopathic Medical Association having served as past president and other committees and is a member of in the Civil Aviation Medical Association. He is a member of various civic clubs and boards of directors. He has special interest in emergency medicine and aviation medicine. Keith Speed, DO joined the WCUCOM family in August 2009.
Italo Subbarao, D.O.
Dr. Subbarao is the Associate Dean of Planning, Assessment, and Competency Development at William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine. He was formerly Director of Public Health Readiness Office at the American Medical Association Center for Public Health Preparedness and Disaster Response, the Deputy Editor of the Journal of Disaster Medicine and Public Health Preparedness an official AMA publication, and the Medical Director for the National Disaster Life Support Program Office. Dr. Subbarao is a leader in domestic and international disaster response including terrorism and is recognized for his work in interprofessional competency development and assessment. He has provided field and technical support to the Haiti Earthquake, the Mumbai Shootings, Hurricanes Gustave and Ike, Hurricane Katrina, the Pakistan Earthquake, and other large scale events. He has published and edited over 60 books and articles and has been an invited speaker to many domestic and international sponsored conferences which include US Dept. of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the North Atlantic Treaty Organizations. Dr. Subbarao is an emergency medicine physician and has completed additional fellowship training in Disaster Medicine at Johns Hopkins University. Dr. Subbarao completed his emergency medicine residency training at Lehigh Valley Hospital, Muhlenberg, in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, where he won three national resident research awards. He is a graduate of the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medical School joint DO/MBA program in Health Care Administration. He lives with his wife and son in Hattiesburg, MS. Sr. Subbarao joined WCUCOM in 2012.
Jessica C. Taylor, Ph.D.
Dr. Taylor earned her Bachelor’s of Science degree from the University of Southern Mississippi in Exercise Science. She earned her PhD in Biomedical Sciences from the University of Missouri in 2008. She was continuously funded throughout her graduate studies through a Biomedical Sciences Departmental Fellowship and the University of Missouri Predoctoral Exercise Training Grant. She did postdoctoral training in Pharmacology and Neuroscience at the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth.
She has received several awards throughout her career and has been published in multiple peer reviewed journals. Dr. Taylor’s research interests include neural control of the circulation, peripheral arterial disease and exercise physiology.
James M. Turner, D.O., FACOFP, FACOEP
Dr. Turner was appointed as the WCUCOM Dean in early 2013 after serving as interim Dean and Associate Dean, Clinical Sciences. He Turner graduated from Nova Southeastern College of Osteopathic Medicine in 1988. He completed his residency in Emergency Medicine from Mount Sinai Medical Center in Miami, Florida and completed his Bachelors of Science degree at Georgia Southwestern College in Americus, Georgia. He received his Fellow from the American College of Osteopathic Family Physicians in 1998 and the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Medicine in 2008.
He has worked as an Osteopathic Family Physician and Emergency Physician in Tennessee, Florida, South Carolina, and West Virginia. He is married to Sherry Turner, D.O. and has a 22 year old daughter, Ashley.
Dr. Turner current serves on the Board of Directors for the American College of Osteopathic Emergency Medicine. He is an inspector for the American Osteopathic Association for, medical colleges and emergency medicine residencies, as well as multiple committees. He relocated to Hattiesburg from Charleston, West Virginia, where he worked in post graduate education and developed an emergency medicine residency program.
Jim C. Weir, D.D.S., J.D.
Dr. Jim C. Weir is a native of Meridian, Mississippi. He graduated from Millsaps College in 1971 with a B.S. in biology. He received his D.D.S. degree from the University Of Tennessee College Of Dentistry in 1974. He completed residency training in Oral Pathology at Emory University School of dentistry in 1976. He also earned a J.D. degree from Loyola University School of Law in 1985.
From 1976 to 1980 he served on the faculty at the University of Mississippi Medical Center as Assistant Professor of Pathology and Oral Pathology. In 1981 he accepted the position of Head of the Department of Oral Pathology at the Louisiana State University School of Dentistry. Upon retirement from LSU, he was Professor and Head of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and Assistant Dean for Admissions. He is currently Associate Dean for Student Affairs, and Professor of Pathology, Histology, and Oral Health at William Carey University College of Osteopathic Medicine.
Dr. Weir is a Fellow of the American Academy of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology and a Diplomate of the American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology. He is a member of the Pierre Fauchard Academy, and the Eastern Society of Teachers of Oral Pathology. In addition to his teaching and administrative duties, he has been actively involved in the practice of Oral and Maxillofacial Pathology, serving as Director of the Oral Pathology Biopsy Service at the LSU School of Dentistry from 1981-2009.
During his career, Dr. Weir has authored 31 scientific articles and abstracts in National or International journals. He has presented over 500 continuing education lectures on a local, state, and national level. He has also been the recipient of fifteen “Teacher of the Year” awards from his students. He and his wife, Nancy, currently reside in Hattiesburg, MS. They have four children: Christie, Marcie, Abby and Katie. Dr. Weir joined WCUCOM in 2010.
Leslie Wimsatt, Ph.D.
Dr. Wimsatt earned a doctoral degree and Master of Arts degree in higher and postsecondary education from the University of Michigan. She has over nine years of experience in medical education curriculum design and assessment, including three years as Director of Educational Research, Development, and Assessment with the Department of Family Medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School and another six years as Director of Curriculum Development for Integrative Medicine. Her background includes a research assistantship with the National Center for Postsecondary Improvement (1996-2002) with a focus on the identification of effective teaching, learning, and assessment practices at U.S. colleges and universities.
Recent publications include a chapter in The Comprehensive Textbook of Healthcare Simulation that explores the integration of simulator use in medical student, residency, and continuing medical education. Additional publications include medical education articles in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Academic Medicine and Family Medicine.
She has delivered over 25 national and international conference presentations focused on curriculum design and evaluation, outcomes assessment, recruitment of medical students into primary care careers, clinical teaching, development of faculty support programming and services, and use of innovative educational technologies in medical education.
Dr. Wimsatt was appointed the WCUCOM’s Associate Dean, Academic Affairs in September 2012.