Meharry President Dr. Wayne J. Riley named to the Institute of Medicine

Dr. Wayne J. Riley, President and Chief Executive Officer of Meharry Medical College (MMC), has been elected to the Institute of Medicine of the National Academies' class of 2012 for his contributions to the field of medicine, medical sciences and healthcare. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg, president of the Institutes of Medicine (IOM), made the announcement this morning during the organization's annual meeting in Washington, D.C.

"To be recognized by one of the nation's foremost medical institutions, alongside the world's most innovative and influential minds in the field of medicine, is both humbling and inspiring," said Dr. Riley. "This distinction reaffirms my commitment to medical science, to teaching future leaders in health care and to positively impacting the wellbeing of others. I am profoundly grateful to the IOM for this honor."

Founded in 1970, the IOM is the health arm of the National Academy of Sciences which was established by an act of Congress and chartered by President Abraham Lincoln in 1863 at the height of the Civil War for the advancement of science and its "use for the greater good." Membership in the IOM is considered one of the highest honors in the field of medicine and science.

Each year, approximately 70 distinguished members are elected from the United States and foreign countries. The IOM's prestigious membership includes Nobel Prize winners, eminent physicians, biomedical scientists, health policy scholars, social scientists and the current presidents of major research universities and foundations.

Dr. Riley's tenured career covers academic medicine, primary care, public health, health care management and policy, academic health science center administration and government. In addition to his role as president and CEO at MMC, Dr. Riley is also a professor of internal medicine at both MMC and Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, and is a senior health policy associate for the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Center for Health Policy at Meharry.

Dr. Riley serves as a member and holds leadership roles in a number of leading organizations and high level federal advisory panels including the Association of Academic Health Centers, U.S. Department of Veteran's Affairs National Academic Affiliations Council and the National Institutes of Health's (NIH) "Blue Ribbon" Advisory Committee. He currently chairs the National Advisory Council on Minority Health and Health Disparities of the NIH. He is a member of the Board of Regents and a Master of the American College of Physicians and holds memberships in the National Medical Association, American Medical Association, American Clinical and Climatological Association, Society of Medical Administrators and Nashville Academy of Medicine.

A specialist in General Internal Medicine, Dr. Riley trained in internal medicine at the  Baylor College of Medicine Affiliated Hospitals Residency Training Program in Houston, Texas and is a Diplomate of both the American Board of Internal Medicine and the National Board of Medical Examiners.  He is a member of Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society and the Arnold P. Gold Foundation Medical Humanism Honor Society.

He received the B.A. degree in Anthropology from Yale University, the M.P.H. in Health Systems Management from the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine, the Doctor of Medicine degree from the Morehouse School of Medicine and the MBA from Rice University's Jesse H. Jones Graduate School of Business.  He is the first M.D. graduate of the Morehouse School of Medicine to be elected to the IOM.

Dr. Riley was a recent recipient of the Nashville Business Journal's Health Care Heroes Award.

He is a corporate director of HCA Holdings, Inc., Pinnacle Financial Partners, LLC and Cambridge, Massachusetts-based Vertex Pharmaceuticals, Inc.

"I am proud to represent Meharry – a leader in training doctors in the care of underserved communities – as a member of the IOM," said Dr. Riley. "At Meharry we believe that even the most disenfranchised of this nation have a right to the highest quality healthcare. I look forward to drawing from the expertise of the IOM and its members for the greater benefit of our faculty, students and the patients we serve."

Meharry Medical College, founded in 1876, is the nation's largest private, independent historically black academic health center dedicated to educating minority and other health professionals. True to its heritage, it is a United Methodist Church-affiliated institution that is ranked second among all 141 medical schools in the social mission of medical education. Meharry is a leading national educator of African Americans with M.D. and D.D.S. degrees and Ph.D. degrees in the biomedical sciences.

Established in 1970 under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Medicine provides objective, evidence-based advice to policymakers, health professionals, the private sector, and the public. The Institute of Medicine, National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and National Research Council together make up the independent, nonprofit National Academies. For the full roster of those elected into the 2012 class of inductees, click here.