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Medicine, dentistry, SHRP faculty ranks grow with new hires

Published on Thursday, February 2, 2017

The Medical Center is proud to announce the following additions to its faculty and leadership staff.

Ryan Michael Babl, D.P.T.

Ryan Babl

Dr. Ryan Michael Babl, formally a senior physical therapist at the St. Dominic Outpatient Rehabilitation and Hand Management Center, has joined the Medical Center faculty as an assistant professor of physical therapy in the School of Health Related Professions.

After receiving his B.S. in education-exercise science from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln, in 2003, Babl earned his M.S. in exercise science at the University of Southern Mississippi in 2005. He served as a strength and conditioning professional at Gravlee Fitness and Body Design, Mountain Brook, Alabama, for six years and earned his D.P.T. at the University of Alabama at Birmingham in 2010. He became a physical therapist at Eskridge in White Physiotherapy, Homewood, Alabama, in 2011 and, 18 months later, joined St. Dominic.

The coauthor of a peer-reviewed article in the journal Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise, Babl has given several invited presentations nationwide. He is an active member of the American Physical Therapy Association and the Mississippi Physical Therapy Association.


Padma Garg, M.D.

Padma Garg

Dr. Padma Garg, recently a pediatric critical care medicine fellow at the University of Texas Southwestern, Dallas, has joined the Medical Center faculty as an assistant professor of pediatrics.

After receiving her M.B.B.S. from Jawaharlal Nehru Medical College, Wardha, India, in 2001, Garg was a senior resident in pediatrics and neonatology in Mumbai and New Delhi, India, from 2002-09 and a registrar for NETS Emergency Transport Services, Australia, from 2009-10. She had a pediatric internship and residency from 2010-13 at the Columbia University Medical Center, New York City, and began her pediatric critical care medicine fellowship in 2013. She was appointed chief administrative fellow from 2015-16.

She has served on the executive committee of the American Academy of Pediatrics from 2011-12 as assistant district coordinator for the New York Region. An active member of the Society of Critical Care Medicine, Garg has authored or coauthored four articles in peer-reviewed professional publications and four posters presented at scientific meetings. She has given numerous platform and research presentations. She has worked on mouse models to study the role of Candida albicans in the development of neonatal bacteremia and presented her data at national meetings.


Leon N. Sykes, M.D.


Dr. Leon N. Sykes, a trauma and acute care surgeon and surgical intensivist at Brookdale University Hospital and Medical Center, Brooklyn, New York, has joined the Medical Center faculty as a professor of surgery.

After receiving his B.A. from Ohio State University, Columbus, in 1974, Sykes earned his M.D. at the Ohio State University School of Medicine in 1978. He had a general surgery internship from 1978-79 and a general surgery residency from 1979-83 at Mercy Hospital, Pittsburgh; a cardiothoracic surgery fellowship from 1983-85 at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor; and a trauma surgery and surgical critical care fellowship from 1985-86 at the Washington Hospital Center, Washington, D.C.

Board certified by the American Board of Surgery, the American Board of Thoracic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery, Surgical Critical Care, Sykes is a fellow of the American College of Surgeons and an active member of several professional organizations, including Alpha Omega Alpha.


Jason Vassar, D.M.D.

Jason Vassar

Dr. Jason Vassar, owner of and practicing orthodontist at Bierdeman/Vassar Orthodontics in Jackson, has joined the Medical Center faculty as an associate professor of orthodontics in the School of Dentistry.

After receiving his B.A. in Spanish magna cum laude from the University of Mississippi in 2007, Vassar earned his D.M.D. cum laude at UMMC in 2011. He then earned his M.D.S. in orthodontics at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center, Memphis, in 2015. He joined Bierdeman/Vassar Orthodontics in June 2015.

A diplomate of the American Board of Orthodontics, Vassar is an active member of several professional organizations, including the American Association of Orthodontics and the American Dental Association. District 4 president elect of the Mississippi Dental Association, he serves as secretary/treasurer of the Jackson Dental Society.

Vassar's research interests include dentoskeletal effects of rapid maxillary expansion appliance and fatigue load resistance in implant connections.