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Faculty members named chairs at Brody

Two Brody School of Medicine faculty members, Dr. Maria C. Clay and Dr. Phillip H. Pekala, have been named departmental chairs by Dean Paul Cunningham.

Clay has been appointed chair of the Department of Bioethics and Interdisciplinary Studies (formerly the Department of Medical Humanities); she had served as the department’s interim chair since 2008. Her appointment is in addition to her role as director of Clinical Skills Assessment and Education in the Division of Health Sciences.

Clay
Clay
After receiving her undergraduate degree in political science and master’s degree in education from ECU, Clay earned her doctorate in Adult Education and Organizational Development from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1990. She joined the Brody School of Medicine faculty in 1992 as assistant professor and educational specialist in the Department of Family Medicine. In 1999, Clay accepted an appointment as co-director of the Office of Interdisciplinary Health Science Education in the Division of Health Sciences.

Pekala has been named chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology in the Brody School of Medicine, which he joined as a faculty member in 1981.

He earned his doctorate in biochemistry from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in Blacksburg, Va., in 1978 and completed his postdoctoral fellowship in physiological chemistry at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in 1981.

Pekala 
Pekala
Since joining the medical school faculty in 1981, Pekala has also served as the assistant dean for research and as the associate director of research for the Leo Jenkins Cancer Center. Pekala received the Brody School of Medicine Master Educator recognition in 2002 and the University of North Carolina Board of Governors Award for Excellence in Teaching in 2003.

Pekala has served as the interim chair of the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology since 2006.



This story appeared originally in the Aug. 27, 2010 issue of Pieces of Eight. An archived version of that issue is available at http://www.ecu.edu/cs-admin/news/poe/2010/810/August-2010-Archives.cfm.