Dr. Maie St. John, a renowned surgeon, scientist and educator, has been named the Samuel and Della Pearlman Chair of the department of head and neck surgery in the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA. St. John, who was chosen after a national search, succeeds Dr. Gerald Berke, who stepped down after leading the department for 26 years.
St. John is also co-director of the UCLA Head and Neck Cancer Program, with research that emphasizes improved therapies and outcomes for people with head and neck cancer. Her clinical expertise is in the identification of tumor margins in the surgical removal of head and neck cancers. Her research focus is the mechanisms of tumor progression and metastasis in head and neck cancer and the identification of genes and pathways for future targeted therapies. St. John has received multiple grants from the National Institutes of Health that bridge basic science with clinical research and service.
Further, her efforts have supported the development of a strong interdepartmental research program in head and neck surgery and bioengineering, work that has led to multiple clinical trials and patent applications.
Praised as an outstanding educator who has mentored numerous trainees, St. John is also a member of several prestigious organizations, including the Executive Council of the American Head and Neck Society, Nominating Committee of the Triological Society, and the American Academy of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery.
St. John received her undergraduate degree from Stanford University and her M.D. and Ph.D. degrees from Yale University. She completed residency and postdoctoral training at UCLA and served previously as chief of head and neck surgery at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center.
The UCLA Department of Head and Neck Surgery is recognized internationally for its research, education, and patient care in head and neck oncology, laryngology, otology, microvascular reconstruction and many other areas.