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Left to right: Hillary Spangler, Katie Allen, Daniel Duddleston, Deb Bynum, Monty Williams and Mike Croglio

Deb Bynum, MD, MMEL, FACP, has been awarded the Mary and Thomas Hudson Distinguished Professorship in the Division of Geriatric Medicine. On Thursday, June 3, residents held a surprise party to celebrate her.

“Being a distinguished professor is a wonderful honor, and today we honor you Dr. Bynum, as maybe one of the only internal medicine program directors in the US that is now a distinguished professor,” said Ron Falk, MD, Chair of the Department of Medicine.

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Jan Busby-Whitehead, MD, honored Bynum at the surprise celebration.

Jan Busby-Whitehead, MD, Chief of the Division of Geriatric Medicine and inaugural Mary and Thomas Hudson Distinguished Professor (2014-2021), also congratulated Bynum, and recognized how she has “provided extraordinary care for the frailest of the frail, patients whose complex conditions require their physician to have great skill and compassion.” Dr. Busby-Whitehead also remembered her as a very talented resident whom she strongly wanted to retain at UNC.

“It seems like only yesterday that I was recruiting you to our fellowship program while you were a chief resident. Then, you went off to Wake Med Hospital. But two years later, we lured you back to the fellowship program and then on to faculty.”

jan-busby-whitehead-deb-bynumResidents followed with messages of praise and adulation that displayed Dr. Bynum’s passion for teaching, one of which was anonymous: “Thanks for inspiring us all with your impressive patient care, for leading us by example, and for knowing our names day one of our med school interviews. You’re a major reason I chose UNC and a major reason I remain content here.”

Bynum received her medical degree from UNC-Chapel Hill where she also completed residency, served as a chief resident, and completed fellowship training in the Division of Geriatric Medicine. In 2000, Bynum was appointed assistant professor in the AHEC Department of Medicine with Wake Med Hospital in Raleigh. In 2002, she returned to UNC for additional training in Geriatric Medicine, and immediately thereafter was appointed to the faculty. From 2008 to 2014, Bynum served as the director for the Geriatric Medicine Fellowship Program. In 2014, she was appointed director of the Internal Medicine Residency Program. In 2015, she obtained a Master of Science in Medical Education Leadership (MMEL) from the University of New England, in partnership with the Harvard Macy Program.

bynum-party-slidesBynum’s teaching and organizational talents led her to receive the 2012 Joseph M. Craver Medical Alumni Distinguished Teaching Professorship Award, and she has received multiple IM Resident faculty teaching awards. She served as co-director for residency curriculum development and improvement in the Donald W. Reynolds Program to train physicians in geriatrics principles. She also co-led the Chief Resident Immersion Training Program in the Care of Older Adults, sponsored by the Hearst Foundation. These achievements contributed to her receiving a highly competitive NIA-funded Geriatric Academic Career Award. Bynum has served on the American Geriatric Society’s Resident Education Committee and the American College of Physicians IM Residency In-Training Exam Committee She is a member of the National Board of Medical Examiners/USMLE Interdisciplinary Review Committee for Step 3 questions. Most recently, she was elected to the Council of the NC State Chapter of the American College of Physicians.