ACOS Award Winners to be Honored at 2016 ACA

Adam B. Smith - Orel F. Martin Medal

The American College of Osteopathic Surgeons and its officers, governors, and members honor Adam Smith with the College’s highest award—the Orel F. Martin Medal—as a symbol of his outstanding career as an osteopathic surgeon, educator, and leader.  

Dr. Smith is a 1988 graduate of the Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Tulsa, where he served as president of the Student Osteopathic Medical Association and was a member of the Atlas Osteopathic Fraternity. He completed a rotating internship at Tulsa Regional Medical Center, where he had the opportunity to meet Walter Wilson, D.O., FACOS, and Keith Watson, D.O., FACOS, as well as other distinguished ACOS members who inspired him to support osteopathic medicine and to pursue a career in surgery. It was at Tulsa Regional Medical Center that he also met his lifelong friend and colleague Albert H. Olivencia-Yurvati, D.O., FACOS, who is the recipient of the first ACOS Guy Beaumont Award of Academic Excellence.

During his residency training at the Osteopathic Medical Center of Texas/UNT Health Science Center in Fort Worth, Dr. Smith had the opportunity to be mentored and trained by outstanding leaders of the ACOS including former Governors W. R. Jenkins, D.O., and Don N. Peska, D.O., FACOS. Drs. Jenkins and Peska, both recipients of the ACOS Distinguished Osteopathic Surgeon Award, taught Dr. Smith that it is an honor and a privilege to give back through service to the organization that makes it possible for a surgeon to practice his or her craft. Perhaps most influential during his formative training years was Sam W. Buchanan, D.O., FACOS, who mentored him in the pursuit of innovative training and surgical excellence. Dr. Smith also has excelled in his career because of training from William Wallace, D.O.; David A. Stone, D.O., FACOS; Terry Wilson, D.O.; and Robert B. McFaul, D.O., FACOS. Dr. Smith believes that these experiences shaped his lifetime commitment to innovation, excellence, teaching, and service.

After practicing general surgery in Oklahoma City for two years, Dr. Smith joined the faculty at the UNT Health Science Center where he focused his practice on minimally invasive surgery and frequently was the first north Texas surgeon to perform advanced laparoscopic procedures.  

Pursuing his passion for teaching, he served as residency trainer and residency director at the Osteopathic Medical Center of Texas and as inaugural program director at Plaza Medical Center of Fort Worth/UNT. He also served as chair of the credentials committee and on the institutional review board at UNT, and on the Osteopathic Medical Center of Texas foundation board. Several of his residents have been named recipients of the ACOS Resident Achievement Award and the Robert C. Erwin Literary Award.

As a faculty member and later in private practice, he partnered with UNT faculty to publish numerous scientific papers on a variety of topics—most often on weight loss surgery, with an emphasis on the behavioral and biochemical responses following bariatric surgery. Beginning in 2001, he focused primarily on bariatric surgery and became a pioneer in the LAP-BAND laparoscopic adjustable gastric band. He has trained surgeons throughout the southwest United States in the LAP-BAND procedure and has lectured on the topic throughout the United States as well as in France, Germany, Argentina, and Mexico. He served for 10 years on the Council for Advances in Bariatrics to promote access to bariatric care, and he was an advocate for the Obesity Action Coalition to urge members of Congress to advocate on behalf of obese patients.  

Dr. Smith left academics in 2004 to pursue private practice. He is president of Ultimate Bariatrics in Fort Worth, where he continues to practice and has performed more than 7,000 bariatric surgeries.

He began his service to the osteopathic profession locally as an officer and president of the Texas Osteopathic Medical Association’s District II, as a delegate to the Texas House of Representatives, and as alternate delegate to the American Osteopathic Association House of Delegates. He also has served on multiple task forces on graduate medical education. He currently is a member of the Texas Osteopathic Medical Association Board of Trustees.

An active member of the ACOS, Dr. Smith is chair of the College’s Bylaws Committee and a member of the Strategic Planning and Ethics committees. Past chair of the General Surgery In-service Examination Committee, he led committee efforts to grow the exam’s test bank and to recruit new members who could contribute to the exam’s validity and consistency. As ACOS governor, he served on numerous committees and task forces including the Strategic Planning Committee, the Scenario Analysis Task Force, and the Search Committee for the College’s new executive director. During his service as ACOS secretary-treasurer, president-elect, and president, he provided leadership in the early period leading to the transition of AOA residency programs to ACGME accreditation to preserve the uniqueness of osteopathic surgical training. He also served on the American Osteopathic Board of Surgery as an examiner and a board member, and as a residency inspector to help maintain the quality of osteopathic residency programs.

The ACOS is grateful to Dr. Smith for his service to the College, and for his lifelong commitment to osteopathic medicine and surgery.

Laurence H. Belkoff, D.O., MSc., FACOS, Hon. LLD - Distinguished Osteopathic Surgeon Award

Dr. Laurence Belkoff has been named the 2016 recipient of the ACOS Charles L. Ballinger Distinguished Osteopathic Surgeon Award for his outstanding accomplishments and leadership in the field of urological surgery and furthering the osteopathic profession.

A 1982 graduate of Kansas City University of Medicine and Biosciences, he completed an internship at Botsford Hospital in Farmington Hills, Michigan and his general surgery at Detroit Osteopathic Hospital and Bi-County Community Hospital in Michigan. He completed a urological surgery residency at Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine/Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia, Pa., where he served as chief resident. He received the ACOS Resident Achievement Award and earned a Master of Science degree in Urology from PCOM in 1987.

Graduate medical education has been the cornerstone of Dr. Belkoff’s academic career. He currently serves as professor and chair of the dep’t of surgical specialties and division of urology at PCOM, and assistant professor in the dep’t of surgery at Drexel University College of Medicine in Philadelphia. He also is urology course director at PCOM. He has been the site director for the Einstein urology surgery program at Hahnemann University Hospital in Philadelphia, and he recently established and is program director for a new urologic surgery residency program at Hahnemann. He is medical director of urological services for the Mercy Health System, and he serves as faculty advisor to Sigma Sigma Phi, the scholarship/leadership fraternity at PCOM.

Dr. Belkoff has excelled as a leader and mentor. He served as President of the medical staff and as Medical Director at City Avenue Hospital in Philadelphia. He was instrumental in successfully transitioning PCOM’s graduate medical education programs to the Medical College of Pennsylvania Hospital when City Avenue Hospital closed. PCOM recognized his dedication by awarding him an honorary law degree (LLD).

His passion and achievement in clinical research has been exemplary. He has served as the principal investigator for more than 150 FDA clinical trials and has authored peer-review articles and co-written numerous abstracts. Dr. Belkoff is the first osteopathic member of the ACGME Urology Resident Review Committee.  

An active member of the ACOS, he has served on the Board of Governors, as College President in 2008-2009, as Chair of the Urological Discipline, and on numerous committees, including as Chair of the Strategic Planning, Ethics, and Awards committees. He was instrumental in creating an Annual Clinical Assembly reception that acknowledges and honors the scholarly activity of residents and students. He has served as ACOS Trust Fund chair. Dr. Belkoff has been the recipient of two ACOS Presidential Recognition Awards, and he received the Orel F. Martin
Medal in 2014 for his outstanding career as a surgeon, educator, leader, and researcher.

Dr. Belkoff’s greatest achievement is his family—including his wife Sherri, and children Josh, Emily, and Andie.

Mark A. Foglietti, D.O., FACOS - Humanitarian Award

Dr. Mark Foglietti, of Cleveland, Ohio, has been selected to receive the ACOS Humanitarian Award that is given to recognize members’ outstanding voluntary service to their community or state, the nation, and/or the international community.

He graduated from Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine in Athens, Ohio, and completed his internship and general surgery residency at Doctors Hospital in Columbus, Ohio. He also completed a plastic surgery residency at the Plastic Surgery Institute in Des Moines, Iowa, under the direction of renowned plastic surgeon James O. Stallings III, M.D. He furthered his plastic surgery training by completing a fellowship in cosmetic and reconstructive breast surgery in Cleveland under the direction of several renowned surgeons. He is AOA board certified in general surgery and in plastic and reconstructive surgery.

Dr. Foglietti began his missionary work in 2010 in response to an international call for plastic surgeons and orthopedic surgeons to treat the victims of a massive earthquake in Haiti. He joined a rapid response team from Ohio University Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine that traveled into Haiti and established surgical services in one of the inner-city hospitals in Port-au-Prince. The earthquake devastation in Haiti was similar to a ravaged war zone, with injuries similar to those sustained in combat.

Since his mission to Haiti, Dr. Foglietti has been a regular team member with Healing the Children Northeast—an international surgical organization that helps children throughout the world receive medical care that is unavailable to them. He has been a member of a Healing the Children team that travels to Colombia, South America, to treat pediatric burn injuries including burn scar contracture, burn deformities, and hand deformities. He tries to take one of his plastic surgery residents, and occasionally a general surgery resident, on these missions to give them exposure to international service work.

Director of the plastic and reconstructive surgery residency program at South Pointe Hospital in the Cleveland Clinic Health System, Dr. Foglietti has been training plastic surgery residents for more than 20 years. He is an accomplished surgeon, author of scientific articles, and national lecturer. He has received multiple awards from his alma mater, Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, including the Outstanding Alumni Award and the Medal of Merit Award.  

Dr. Foglietti is an active member of the ACOS. He has served on the College’s Board of Governors and as president of the Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery Discipline.

Albert H. Olivencia-Yurvati, D.O., PhD, FACOS, FICS, FAHA - Guy D. Beaumont Jr., FACOS Award of Academic Excellence

The American College of Osteopathic Surgeons is pleased to present the first Guy D. Beaumont Jr., FACOS Award of Academic Excellence to Dr. Albert H. Olivencia-Yurvati for his outstanding organizational leadership and excellence in improving the quality of osteopathic surgical education in AOA/ACOS accredited surgical training programs and in continuing medical education.

Dr. Yurvati is a 1986 graduate of the University of North Texas Health Science Center (UNTHSC) Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine (TCOM) in Fort Worth. He completed his internship and general surgery residency at Tulsa Regional Medical Center in Tulsa, Okla., and a residency in cardiothoracic and vascular surgery at Deborah Heart and Lung Center and Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Browns Mills, N.J. He served as chief resident for both residencies. AOA board certified in cardiothoracic-vascular surgery and general surgery, he is a Fellow of the ACOS, the International College of Surgeons, and the American Heart Association.  

He completed a doctorate in education with a concentration in organizational leadership from Northcentral University, and he earned a graduate certificate in teaching and adult learning from the UNT Toulouse School of Education. Dr. Yurvati currently is a tenured Dallas Southwest Osteopathic Physicians Endowed Professor in Surgery and chair of the department of medical education at TCOM. He also serves as professor of integrative physiology at the UNTHSC Institute for Cardiovascular and Metabolic Diseases, as adjunct professor of biological sciences at UNT in Denton, and as a visiting professor in the department of biomedical engineering at the University of Strathclyde in Glasgow, Scotland.

He has received numerous awards from UNTHSC, including the 2012 Clyde Gallehugh, D.O. Memorial Award, the 2011 President’s Award for Clinical Excellence, and the Benjamin L. Cohen Award for Outstanding Research Achievement, and an Academic Commendation of Excellence Award for superior post-tenure review. In 2010 he received the TCOM Dean’s Award for Philanthropy and a Doctorate of Philanthropy from the UNT Health Science Center in 2011.

Dr. Yurvati has served on many committees on the local, state, and national levels. He is past president of the Metro Fort Worth American Heart Association and recipient of the American Heart Association’s Distinguished Service Award. On the national level, he serves as chair of the American Osteopathic Board of Surgery and is actively involved in numerous ACOS committees. He also has served as ACOS Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery Discipline chair and representative to the Board of Governors, as well as chair of the discipline’s educational program for the Annual Clinical Assembly. ACOS recognized him in 2013 with its highest award—the Orel F. Martin Medal.

He serves on the editorial boards of multiple journals, including the Journal of the American Osteopathic Association (JAOA) and Filtration. He is a reviewer for many peer journals, including Cardiovascular Research, Experimental Biology and Medicine, Annals of Thoracic Surgery, and the JAOA.  

Dr. Yurvati has published more than 74 peer-reviewed articles, three book chapters, and numerous abstracts. He is the recipient of more than $2.5 million in grants, including National Institutes of Health, NASA, Department of Defense, and Osteopathic Heritage Foundation funding. He is a primary investigator in multiple phase 2 and 3 clinical trials. He has lectured nationally and internationally, presenting previously at the Therapeutic Filtration and Extracorporeal Circulation Meeting at the prestigious Hammersmith Hospital in London, England. His research interests include the inflammatory effects of cardiopulmonary bypass, cardiac metabolism, mechanical cardiac assist devices, post-cardiac surgery adhesions, and neoplasm of the lung.