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Congratulations to the most recent recipients of the Distinguished Medical Alumni Awards, Distinguished Service Awards, Distinguished Faculty Award and Early Career Achievement Award! These award recipients were honored at our Spring Medical Alumni Weekend during the Alumni Awards Banquet on April 26, 2024.

L-R: C. Gaelyn Garrett, MD ’88; Erica Herzog, MD ’97, PhD; Thomas H. Belhorn, MD ’87, PhD

L-R: Adam Goldstein, MD, MPH; Shelton “Shelley” Earp, MD ’70; Joy Renner, BSRS ’80, MA, RT(R)

L-R: Michelle R. Campbell, MCLS ’18; Kizzmekia S. Corbett-Helaire, PhD ’14

2024 Distinguished Medical Alumni Awards


C. Gaelyn Garrett, MD ’88

C. Gaelyn Garrett, MD, is a highly regarded leader in the field of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery (OTOHNS). Her career in medicine began after obtaining her BA in Chemistry from UNC in 1984. She earned her MD from UNC in 1988 and completed her residency at UNC in 1994. As a UNC undergraduate and first-year medical student, she was a four-year letterperson on the track and field team, participating as a heptathlete and javelin thrower.

Her academic career in medicine began at Vanderbilt University Medical Center (VUMC) in 1994, where she completed her fellowship in Laryngology and Care of the Professional Voice as the first woman fellowship-trained laryngologist in the country. She has been on faculty at VUMC since that time and currently is an endowed Professor and Vice-Chair of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery and Medical Director of the world-renowned Vanderbilt Voice Center. Dr. Garrett’s medical and surgical expertise is sought by some of the world’s finest national and international singers and entertainers. In addition, she has an active clinical practice in the full spectrum of laryngology including airway and swallow disorders.

Dr. Garrett has held numerous leadership positions in VUMC administration including Chair of the Faculty Appointments and Promotion Committee for the past four years as well as the Medical Director of the Otolaryngology Patient Care Center for the past 10 years. Nationally, she currently serves as President of the American Board of Otolaryngology – Head and Neck Surgery. She has also been in leadership for several other academic organizations including being the first woman President for the American Laryngological, Rhinological and Otological Society (also known as the Triological Society).


Erica Herzog, MD ’97, PhD

Erica Lyndrup Herzog, MD PhD earned her undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she was a William Richardson Davie Scholar and elected to Phi Beta Kappa. Following medical school at UNC, she completed residency at Mount Sinai Medical Center in New York followed by combined Pulmonary and Critical Care fellowship and PhD in investigative medicine at Yale University.  She joined Yale faculty as an instructor in 2005 and has risen through the ranks to her current position of John Slade Ely Endowed Professor of Medicine.

Dr. Herzog has advanced medicine through biomedical research, clinical care, and teaching.  She is most well-known for studies that explain why damaged lungs do not heal properly and develop a type of scar called “pulmonary fibrosis.” Her discoveries are in various stages of preclinical development, have been published in high impact journals, and broadly cited across multiple scientific disciplines. Her clinical commitment is epitomized by the founding directorship of Yale’s Interstitial Lung Disease Center of Excellence. This center provides the pulmonary fibrosis community with compassionate care, opportunities for engagement, and access to potentially lifesaving experimental therapies.  A continuous recipient of NIH funding since 2005, Dr. Herzog has received numerous awards including the Parker B. Francis Fellowship, a Scientific Achievement Award from the American Thoracic Society, and election to the American Society of Clinical Investigation.


2024 Distinguished Faculty Awards


Thomas H. Belhorn, MD ’87, PhD

Tom Belhorn, MD PhD is a Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Pediatric Infectious Diseases at the UNC School of Medicine. Dr. Belhorn obtained his PhD (Department of Microbiology and Immunology) and MD in 1987 from UNC – Chapel Hill. He completed his pediatrics residency at the Children’s Hospital of Alabama in 1990 and fellowship in pediatric infectious diseases at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center in 1993. After practicing six years at the University of Texas Medical Center in Houston, he returned to UNC.

Dr. Belhorn is the clinical director for Pediatric Infectious Diseases, and he provides care for children who are in-patients at the UNC Children’s Hospital and in outpatient clinics. He has a special interest in pediatric HIV, and he directs the Ryan White Program-funded pediatric HIV clinic at UNC Hospitals. Like other UNC clinicians, he provides care to children across the state; he has held the “honor” of being the most frequently-paged clinician in the UNC Health System and is always happy to provide advice on care for children with varied infectious diseases. He is annually selected for the Best Doctors in America Award and has been recognized as one of America’s top pediatricians in his specialty.

Dr. Belhorn has a strong interest in medical education, has won numerous education awards, and frequently gives lectures on varied pediatric infectious disease topics to wide-ranging audiences.


Adam Goldstein, MD, MPH

Adam O. Goldstein, MD MPH is the Elizabeth and Oscar Goodwin Distinguished Professor of Family Medicine at the University of North Carolina School of Medicine in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. Dr. Goldstein founded the Tobacco Intervention Programs (Tobacco Treatment Program and Tobacco Prevention and Evaluation Program) and Behavioral Weight Management Program in the UNC School of Medicine.

Dr. Goldstein’s interdisciplinary NIH funded research on tobacco communication and regulatory science has received over $60 million in extramural support, leading to over 225 publications in international journals. Dr. Goldstein’s articles on primary care dermatology for Up-To-Date are downloaded over 2 million times annually by clinicians.

Dr. Goldstein founded and Co-Hosted UNC Health Care’s YOUR HEALTH®, radio show from 2008-2020, with over 500 shows on health, healing, medical care and ethics. Dr. Goldstein has served on and led multiple local, state national, and international Boards, including the UNC Center for Public Service, North Carolina Hillel, the Israel Healthcare Foundation, and the Arava Institute for Environmental Research. He has led and participated in leadership missions and service internationally to Haiti, Israel, Moldova, Argentina, Chile, Ukraine, and Armenia.


2024 Distinguished Service Awards


Shelton “Shelley” Earp, MD ’70

Shelley Earp, MD ‘70, is the director of the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center, a role he has served in since 2018. This is his second stint in the role, previously leading the institution from 1997-2014. A graduate of the UNC School of Medicine, Earp has served the UNC School of Medicine community as a faculty member since 1977.

Under his leadership, UNC Lineberger has become one of the nation’s leading cancer research hubs, connecting faculty from across the University and beyond. Earp has also initiated partnerships with other University of North Carolina System schools, recognizing the importance of collaboration in research that leads to new treatments for cancer. The N.C. Basnight Cancer Hospital, clinical home of UNC Lineberger, is ranked as the top cancer center in North Carolina and is among the top 30 nationwide.

In 2023, Earp was recognized with the O. Max Gardner Award, which honors faculty who have “made the greatest contribution to the welfare of the human race.” It is the highest faculty honor at the University of North Carolina.

Dr. Earp recently announced his intention to step down as director of UNC Lineberger in June of 2024. He will continue in his role as Distinguished Professor of Cancer Research, Medicine and Pharmacology.


Joy Renner, BSRS ’80, MA, RT(R)

Joy J. Renner is an Associate Professor in the Department of Health Sciences and the Director of the Division of Radiologic Science. During her tenure as Director, the Division has expanded from one to four programs and has added a baccalaureate curriculum in sonography, a masters degree in radiologic science and a certificate program in radiography. Her commitment to addressing workforce issues drove the development of two of these programs and to the establishment of partnerships with other non-state funding sources to support the programs.

Ms. Renner has served on curriculum and practice standard development committees for the American Society of Radiologic Technologists. She served on committees for advanced practice analysis and examination development for the American Registry of Radiologic Technologists.

She is a past President, Life Member and Honors Lecturer for the Association of Educators in Imaging and Radiologic Sciences and was the first non-physician to chair a committee, and she chairs the Radiologist Assistants Educators Council. She is also a past Board member and a Life Member of the North Carolina Society of Radiologic Technologists.

Ms. Renner has also served in many University roles. She has served as an academic advisor for undergraduates seeking a health profession career. She served as Chair of the Faculty Athletics Committee and as a member of the Chancellor-appointed Ethics and Integrity Working group. She was a member of two SACS reaccreditation committees and participated in subcommittees for two undergraduate general education curriculum revisions. She previously chaired the University’s Tanner and Friday award selection committees, co-developed the revised University Approved Absence Policy, chaired the Chancellor’s Advisory Committee and the Committee on University Governance, and served on search committees for the Chancellor and Provost.


2024 Early Career Achievement Awards


Michelle R. Campbell, MCLS ’18

Michelle R. Campbell is a 2018 graduate of the Masters of Clinical Laboratory Science- Molecular Diagnostic Science Track Program. She currently resides in Rochester, Minnesota where she is employed at Mayo Clinic as a Senior Developer of laboratory diagnostics in the Translational Research, Innovation and Test Development Office. She holds the rank of Assistant Professor of Laboratory Medicine and Pathology for the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science. In her roles at Mayo Clinic, her focus is on innovation in immunoassays, mass spectrometry assays, and molecular virology assays with much of her work focused on biomarkers of neurodegeneration. Michelle has also served as Adjunct Instructor and Assistant Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill teaching Biostatistics and Method Evaluation.

Michelle enjoys professional volunteerism, serving in various leadership roles for the Clinical Laboratory & Standards Institute, American Society for Clinical Pathology (ASCP), and American Society for Clinical Laboratory Sciences (ASCLS). Previous honors include being named an ASCP 40 Under Forty awardee, ASCLS Voices Under 40 awardee, and being featured on The Pathologist Magazine Power List.


Kizzmekia S. Corbett-Helaire, PhD ’14

Kizzmekia C. Corbett-Helaire, PhD ’14 is an assistant professor of immunology and infectious diseases at Harvard’s T.H. Chan School of Public Health. She previously spent six years at the Vaccine Research Center at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, National Institutes of Health (NIAID NIH). Dr. Corbett uses her viral immunology expertise to propel novel vaccine development for pandemic preparedness, including mRNA-1273, a leading vaccine against SARS-CoV-2. The vaccine concept was designed by Dr. Corbett’s NIH team from viral sequence and rapidly deployed to industry partner, Moderna, Inc., for Phase 1 clinical trial, which unprecedently began only 66 days from viral sequence release.

Dr. Corbett boasts a patent portfolio which also includes universal coronavirus and influenza vaccine concepts and novel therapeutic antibodies. In all, she has over 15 years of experience studying various viruses, garnering several prestigious awards, such as the Benjamin Franklin Next Gen Award and the Salzman Memorial Award in Virology. For her efforts to quickly bring vaccinations to the global community in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Dr. Corbett has received numerous accolades, including being named TIME Person of the Year and a recipient of the Golden Goose Award for excellence in federally funded research. Closer to home, in 2021, her hometown of Hillsborough, North Carolina declared January 12 “Dr. Kizzy Corbett Day.”

Combining her research goals with her knack for mentorship, Dr. Corbett invests much of her time in underserved communities as an advocator of STEM education and vaccine awareness.