Feb. 7, 2019

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New faculty span surgery, peds, family medicine, dentistry fields

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

Chinenye Iwuchukwu, M.D.

Portrait of Chinenye Iwuchukwu

Dr. Chinenye Iwuchukwu, recently a trauma/critical care fellow at Harborview Medical Center, Seattle, Washington, has joined the Medical Center faculty as an assistant professor of surgery.

After receiving her B.Sc. from Eastern Michigan University, Ypsilanti, in 2003, Iwuchukwu pursued her M.P.H. at the University of Illinois at Chicago from 2003-04, obtaining it in 2009. She earned her M.D. in 2010 at the University of Chicago, Pritzker School of Medicine, and had general surgery residency training from 2010-17 at the State University of New York (SUNY) Upstate University Hospital, Syracuse, before beginning her trauma/critical care fellowship at Harborview Medical Center.

The author or coauthor of three articles in peer-reviewed publications, two book chapters and three scientific poster presentations, she has given three invited presentations nationally. Her research interests have included statin inhibition in smooth muscle cells, the Lefort criteria in facial fractures and knowledge of advanced directive among emergency room patients, among other topics. Her current research interest is understanding and reducing health disparities among surgical patients.


Firas Mourad, D.D.S.

Portrait of Firas Mourad

Dr. Firas Mourad, recently a fellow in the Department of Oral and Maxillofacial Prosthodontics at the University of Alabama at Birmingham, has joined the Medical Center faculty as a professor of dentistry in the Department of Care Planning and Restorative Sciences.

After receiving his D.D.S. from Damascus University in 2002, Mourad earned his diploma in oral and maxillofacial surgery there in 2005. He had a fellowship in cranio maxillofacial and midface trauma at the Medical University of Vienna, Austria, in 2007 and earned a second master’s degree in implant dentistry at the School of Dental Medicine, University of Bern, Switzerland, in 2009 and a master’s degree in operative dentistry/endodontics at Damascus University in 2011. He also received a master’s degree in prosthodontics from UAB in 2017.

An active member of the American Academy of Maxillofacial Prosthodontics, the American College of Prosthodontics and the Academy of Osseointegration, Mourad has presented scientific posters at five professional meetings or conferences nationally and has given 13 invited lectures internationally.


Leah Olewiler, M.S.

Leah Olewiler

Leah Olewiler, a licensed genetic counselor for Nationwide Children’s Hospital, Columbus, Ohio, has joined the Medical Center faculty as an assistant professor of pediatrics in the Division of Medical Genetics.

After receiving her cum laude B.S. in biology from Heidelberg University, Tiffin, Ohio, in 2013, Olewiler earned her M.S. in genetic counseling at Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio in 2016. She then joined Nationwide Children’s Hospital as a licensed genetic counselor.

An active member of the National Society of Genetic Counselors within her community of Columbus, Ohio, Olewiler has given three invited presentations at universities in Ohio and has been a clinical supervisor for Ohio State University genetic counseling master’s students.

Her prior research interests have included parental beliefs and attitudes toward false-positive Krabbe disease newborn screening, the role of religious/spiritual assessments within genetic counseling, and valosin-containing protein in frontotemporal dementia.


Ardarian D. Gilliam Pierre, M.D.

Portrait of Ardarian Gilliam-Pierre

Dr. Ardarian D. Pierre, recently a geriatrics fellow at UMMC, has joined the Medical Center faculty as an assistant professor of family medicine. In addition, she will provide evaluations for The MIND Center through the Department of Medicine’s Division of Geriatrics.

After receiving her B.S. in microbiology from the Mississippi University for Women in 2005, Pierre earned her M.D. at the American University of Antigua, New York, in 2013. She had residency training in family medicine from 2014-17 and completed a geriatrics fellowship from 2017-18 at UMMC.

She is an active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American Geriatric Society and the Mississippi Academy of Family Physicians.