Christine Jacobs, M.D.
Vice President of Medical Affairs and Dean
Christine Jacobs, M.D., FAAFP, was appointed vice president of medical affairs and dean of the Saint Louis University School of Medicine in February 2022 after serving as interim dean of the School of Medicine since February 2021. Previously, she was professor and chair of the Department of Family and Community Medicine. As VPMA and dean, Dr. Jacobs leads the clinical, academic, and research areas of the School of Medicine and the Center for Advanced Dental Education (CADE). She serves on the University Leadership Council and the President’s Research Council. She chairs the SSM Academic Leadership Council. She is a member of the SSM Health St. Louis, SLUH, & Cardinal Glennon Board of Directors, chair of SSM Health St. Louis Region Safety and Quality Committee of the board, and member of the SSM Region Joint Leadership Council. She is a member of the Board of Casa de Salud and the St. Louis Integrated Health Network.
Jacobs is deeply committed to excellence in clinical practice, health equity, medical education and the rigor of scientific inquiry. She has 35 years of experience in clinical practice, academic medicine, training medical students and residents, and has been the principal investigator of over $3.5 million in federal, state and foundation grants.
Jacobs graduated from the University of California Davis with Highest Honors, Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, and completed family medicine residency at Brown University. During medical school, she worked in Appalachia and in a bush clinic in Senegal. She practiced family medicine in a rural federally qualified health center, spent 19 years in academic medicine most recently at the University of Illinois in Chicago, and joined Saint Louis University in 2008. In 2011 she founded the Saint Louis University Family Medicine Residency in St. Louis. The residency has become nationally known for its emphasis on training doctors to deliver comprehensive care to underserved populations and in 2017 received the Focus St. Louis Award for Improving Racial Equality and Social Justice in the St. Louis region.
Jacobs’ scholarship is in medical education, clinical medicine, and the integration of behavioral and physical health. She is board certified in family medicine and geriatrics, and among other honors, was named as a St. Louis Best Doctor multiple years.
Additional School of Medicine Leadership
Johan C. Bester is the associate dean for pre-clerkship curriculum at Saint Louis University School of Medicine. He is also an associate professor in family and community medicine, and associate professor in healthcare ethics. Bester provides leadership and oversight to the entire pre-clerkship curriculum at the School of Medicine. He supervises course directors and staff, and guides curricular philosophy, integration, practice and delivery. Bester also teaches in the healthcare ethics course in the medical school, and serves as the leader for the evidence-based medicine thread.
Bester is an experienced bioethicist and medical educator with a prior background as physician. He completed medical training in South Africa. and practiced in family medicine and emergency medicine settings for 12 years in many different places, including in South Africa, Canada and the United Kingdom. He then transitioned to a professional focus on bioethics and medical education, which included completing a master’s degree and a Ph.D. in applied ethics at Stellenbosch, and clinical ethics fellowship training at Cleveland Clinic. Prior to joining SLU, he served as director of bioethics and assistant dean for biomedical science education at Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine at University of Nevada, Las Vegas.
Bester engages in scholarship in pediatric ethics, vaccination ethics and theories of justice. He has published extensively in the areas of childhood vaccination, medical decision-making for children, and medical ethics. His work has been published in notable journals such as American Journal of Bioethics, JAMA Pediatrics, Bioethical Inquiry, and Journal of Medical Ethics. In addition, he has published a book examining the moral foundations and limits of parental authority, and co-edited an international textbook in pediatric ethics.
Tammy Burton is the senior associate dean of finance and strategy at Saint Louis University. She provides financial and operational oversight to the School of Medicine, the Center for Advanced Dental Education (CADE) and the School of Medicine shared service centers.
Burton is a certified public accountant and a graduate of Saint Louis University with a dual degree in management information systems and accounting. She joined Saint Louis University in the spring of 2019 after 22+ years working as a managing director with PwC leading client organizations in audit, technical accounting, compliance, risk mitigation, and finance process optimization. She has served as a lead presenter and educator for various organizations, including PwC, IAA, FEI, and other regional/national financial organizations. She is a member of the AICPA and MoCPA.
Tina Chen, M.D., was appointed assistant dean of simulation and clinical skills in June 2018. In this role, she works to integrate evidence-based, hands-on simulation education into the medical student curriculum. She is also an assistant professor in the Department of Emergency Medicine, where she serves as the director of simulation for the Saint Louis University Emergency Medicine Residency.
Chen attended medical school at Washington University in St. Louis. She graduated from the University of Connecticut Integrated Residency in Emergency Medicine, then completed a fellowship in medical simulation at the Center of Education, Simulation, and Innovation at Hartford Hospital.
During her time at Saint Louis University, Tina received a Best Teaching Award from the emergency medicine residency in 2018, as well as the Caring Physician Award in 2018. Her simulation interests include interprofessional education, assessment, and simulation-based mastery learning.
Hiral Choksi, M.D., FACP, SFHM is the associate dean of admissions for the School of Medicine as well as an associate professor of medicine in the Division of General Internal Medicine. Choksi received her Doctor of Medicine at the University of Missouri-Kansas City and completed her internal medicine training along with a chief resident year at Saint Louis University.
Choksi was a practicing hospitalist in Chicago for many years prior to returning as faculty at Saint Louis University. She served as the inaugural section chief of hospital medicine and led the growth of the program along with serving in a variety of educational roles.
Stephanie Decker is chief of staff to the dean and vice president of medical affairs of the Saint Louis University School of Medicine. She obtained her undergraduate degree in business administration from Southern Methodist University, her law degree from Emory University School of Law, and a Masters of Law in International Business Law from the National University of Singapore.
Tyler De Shon, Ph.D., is the assistant dean of student affairs at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine. He obtained his undergraduate degree in psychology from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, his masters in student affairs from the University of Iowa, and his doctorate in higher education administration from Saint Louis University.
De Shon works with undergraduate medical students to support them as they pursue their degrees and discern a specialty with which their gifts and passion allow them to live a life of fulfillment and joy, and provide excellent, compassionate care of patients. De Shon has previously worked in student conduct on the north campus, as well as several other roles within university-wide student affairs.
Kristina Dzara, Ph.D., M.M.Sc., was appointed assistant dean for scholarly teaching and learning in the Office of Faculty Affairs and Professional Development on September 1, 2023. She is also an associate professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine.
Dzara is a graduate of the Master of Medical Sciences in Medical Education program at Harvard Medical School, the Ph.D. in Sociology program at Southern Illinois University, the Master in Applied Sociology program, and the Bachelor's in Advertising and Public Relations programs at the University of Central Florida, and an alumna of the Harvard Macy Institute.
Dzara serves as the director of the Center for Scholarly Teaching and Learning. Her work focuses on championing the use of evidence-based teaching and learning practices, developing faculty as educators across the undergraduate medical education, graduate medical education, graduate education, and continuing professional development continuum, and supporting collaborative educational scholarship.
Gabriela M. Espinoza, M.D., is the assistant dean for educational programming in the office of graduate medical education and professor in the Department of Ophthalmology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine.
Espinoza is a graduate of Louisiana State University Health Sciences Center in New Orleans and trained in ophthalmology at Washington University in Saint Louis. She specializes in ophthalmic plastic and reconstructive surgery and served as the ophthalmology program director at Saint Louis University for over a decade before her current position.
Julie K. Gammack, M.D., CMD, FACP, is the senior associate dean for graduate medical education and professor of medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine, Division of Geriatrics Medicine at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine.
Gammack is a graduate of the University of Minnesota Medical School and trained in internal medicine and geriatric medicine at the University of Washington School of Medicine. Her clinical practice includes hospital, clinic and nursing home-based care for older adults.
Timothy R. Havens, M.D., is the assistant dean of clinical skills. He obtained his undergraduate degree in computer engineering from Brown University in 2004, and his doctorate of medicine from Saint Louis University in 2010. He completed residency training at Saint Louis University in 2013 where he was named chief resident. He then joined the faculty at SLU and has been working there ever since.
During his career at SLU, Havens has been heavily involved in both resident and medical student education. On the residency side, he has served as the director of resident performance improvement and resident oral board preparation. On the medical student side, Havens has been heavily involved in the development of a fourth-year clerkship in emergency medicine and directs multiple elective rotations. As the assistant dean of clinical skills, Havens is responsible for the SLUSOM clinical skills center and oversees the clinical teaching for the preclinical curriculum.
Havens does his clinical work primarily in the Emergency Department at SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital, but also provides staffing for SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital. In 2019 he was named the R.R. Hannas Physician of the Year by the Missouri College of Emergency Physicians. His academic interests include curriculum development, low-fidelity simulation, and day-one preparedness for residency.
Ghazala Hayat, M.D., is the director of continuous quality improvement at Saint Louis University School of Medicine. She is also a professor of neurology, director of neuromuscular and clinical neurophysiology services, and directs the multidisciplinary ALS clinic.
Hayat received her medical degree from King Edward Medical College, Pakistan. She completed a residency in neurology and fellowship in neuromuscular disorders and electrodiagnosis at Virginia Commonwealth University, Medical College of Virginia in Richmond. She is a fellow of the American Academy of Neurology and the American Neurological Association.
Lisa Israel, M.Ed., is the director for the Office of Professional Oversight and obtained her undergraduate degree from University of Maryland, Baltimore County and her master’s degree in higher education administration from Loyola University Chicago. She has served Saint Louis University since 2009 in varied capacities involving leadership, student success and retention.
In her role as director, she assists all members of the School of Medicine with issues related to unprofessionalism and/or mistreatment as it relates to the learning environment. Her specialties include conflict mediation, coaching, and seeking resolutions. In addition, she serves as the ombudsman for members of the School of Medicine learning environment.
Marilyn Maxwell, M.D., is the assistant dean of admissions for the School of Medicine as well as professor of internal medicine and pediatrics.
Maxwell received her Doctor of Medicine from Saint Louis University School of Medicine, where she also completed a combined residency in internal medicine-pediatrics.
Maxwell continues to practice both specialties (Division of General Internal Medicine and Division of General Academic Pediatrics) and has served in a variety of educational roles with medical students and residents.
Jane McHowat, Ph.D., is the associate dean for faculty affairs and professional development and professor of pathology at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine.
McHowat has a degree in pharmacy from De Montfort University and Doctor of Philosophy in Pharmacology from Bath University. She completed a postdoctoral fellowship in cardiology at Washington University in St. Louis before joining the pathology faculty at Saint Louis University. Her research interests focus on endothelial and epithelial cell biology with an emphasis on lipid metabolism in sepsis and cigarette smoking-related diseases such as cancer and heart disease.
Adam R. Merando, M.D., FACP, SFHM, is the associate dean of student affairs. He obtained his undergraduate degrees in biology and chemistry at Pittsburg State University and his doctorate of medicine from the University of Kansas School of Medicine. He completed his residency training and chief residency in internal medicine at the University of Kansas. He joined Saint Louis University as an associate program director for the internal medicine residency program in 2015.
In 2019, he became the section chief for medical education in internal medicine at the John Cochran VA Medical Center in St. Louis, while serving as course co-director for the Clinical Diagnosis Course as well as Learning Community Faculty. He became associate dean of student affairs in March 2023.
Merando is a hospitalist and does his clinical work at the John Cochran VA Medical Center. His academic interests include medical education, quality improvement and cognitive bias and errors.
Chad S. Miller, M.D., FACP, SFHM, is the senior associate dean of undergraduate medical education. He obtained his undergraduate degree in molecular biophysics and biochemistry from Yale University in 1999 and his doctorate of medicine from Tulane University in 2004. He completed his residency training in internal medicine at Tulane University in 2007. Miller then served as associate program director for the internal medicine residency program and internal medicine clerkship director until 2015 when he came to Saint Louis University School of Medicine.
Miller started at SLUSOM as division director of general internal medicine and vice-chair of education for the Department of Internal Medicine. In 2017, he stepped into the dean’s office and eventually assumed his current administrative role.
Miller is a hospitalist and does his clinical work at Saint Louis University Hospital. His academic interests include medical education, clinical reasoning and high-value care.
Adriana M. Montaño, Ph.D., is the vice dean for research and a professor of pediatrics, and biochemistry and molecular biology at Saint Louis University School of Medicine.
Montaño received a B.S. from the University of Los Andes in Bogotá, Colombia, and her Ph.D., from Gifu University in Japan. She received a postdoctoral fellowship from the Japan Society for the Promotion of Science (JSPS) at The Graduate University for Advanced Studies – Sokendai, and served as a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Biochemistry at Kobe Pharmaceutical University (Japan). Additionally, she earned an M.Sc. in health outcomes research and evaluation sciences with a concentration in clinical investigation from Saint Louis University.
William Maurice Redden, M.D., received his undergraduate degree in biology from Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina. He then went to Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University for his medical degree. Following medical school, he completed his adult psychiatry residency at Wake Forest University. Finally, he moved to St. Louis to pursue his geriatric psychiatry fellowship training at Saint Louis University.
He began his career is academic medicine, where he is now an associate professor in the Department of Psychiatry at Saint Louis University School of Medicine, where he also specializes in geriatric psychiatry.
He remains enthusiastic and extremely passionate to decrease the negative mental health stigma and disparities in all patient populations, but especially aging minorities.
Duane Moore, M.D., is a native St. Louisan. After graduating from Xavier University of Louisiana in New Orleans, he attended Saint Louis University School of Medicine, graduating in 2002. Moore has been board-certified in emergency medicine since 2006. He also obtained a Master of Health Administration from SLU School of Public Health. Moore serves as a director of the board for the Northeast Ambulance and Fire District and the St. Louis Crisis Nursery. He has been the chief of emergency medicine at Christian Hospital Northeast/Northwest Healthcare since 2017. Moore is an adjunct professor of clinical medicine in the Pediatric Emergency Medicine Division in the Department of Pediatrics at SLU SOM and serves as an assistant dean in the Office of Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion.
Moore is married and has two daughters. His wife, Katrina, is an associate professor in history and African American studies in the SLU College of Arts and Sciences. Moore’s family is SLU strong as his mother is an alumna of SLU School of Nursing and his sister is an alumna of SLU Law School. In his free time, he enjoys cooking, camping, listening to music and running marathons.
Lauren Schwarz, Ph.D., ABPP, is an assistant dean of student affairs at the Saint Louis University School of Medicine. She is also a professor of psychiatry and neurology. She is a board-certified clinical neuropsychologist. She is the director of the division of health psychology and neuropsychology program director at Saint Louis University.
Schwarz earned her doctorate in clinical psychology from Saint Louis University. She completed her internship training at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and a fellowship at the University of Illinois Chicago. Schwarz’s clinical interests are in the provision of neuropsychological services to adults with a diverse range of presenting concerns. In addition to clinical work, Schwarz is also involved in the education of residents, fellows and clinical psychology graduate students. She has a wide variety of research interests including cognitive functioning in patients with mild cognitive impairment.
Keniesha Thompson, M.D., M.S., FACP, FHM completed her undergraduate degree in biology at Howard University in Washington, D.C., and went on to medical school at the University of Kansas School of Medicine in Kansas City, Kansas. She completed her internal medicine residency and chief resident years at Saint Louis University. She joined the Saint Louis University School of Medicine faculty in 2016. In January 2023, she became an assistant dean of student affairs and ODEI. She has been involved in medical student education and previously served as associate program director for the internal medicine residency training program and co-director of the internal medicine core clerkship.
Her research interests include health outcomes research, physician-patient communication, patient safety, and medical education. Her clinical time is spent attending on the inpatient internal medicine wards at SSM Health Saint Louis University Hospital and John Cochran VA.
Katrina Wade, M.D., is an interim associate dean of the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion and is a professor of surgery and associate professor of pediatrics. She received her Doctor of Medicine from Saint Louis University School of Medicine and completed a combined residency in emergency medicine and general pediatrics at Wayne State University School of Medicine. She was board-certified in emergency medicine and general pediatrics.
She currently practices as a part-time faculty member of the Division of Emergency Medicine in the Department of Surgery. She continues to serve in a variety of educational, leadership, and mentorship roles throughout the School of Medicine and University with a focus on student and resident education and support.
Neal Weber, Ed.D., Ms.ED, is the assistant dean of program evaluation and assessment for the Saint Louis University School of Medicine. He has dedicated his career to advancing medical education through research and assessment, focusing on improving the quality of medical training and ensuring that students are well-prepared to meet the demands of the healthcare industry.
Weber obtained his undergraduate degree in industrial organizational psychology, his master's in instructional design and performance development from Southern Illinois University Edwardsville, and his doctorate in learning and organizational change from Baylor University.
Weber's research interests include curriculum development, assessment methods, and program evaluation in medical education. As assistant dean of program evaluation and assessment for Saint Louis University School of Medicine, he oversees the development and implementation of assessment strategies for the medical education program. He works closely with faculty, staff and students to ensure the curriculum is up-to-date and prepares students for the rapidly evolving healthcare landscape.