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Promotions and changes in School of Medicine leadership

July 28, 2021 12:30 PM

From left to right: Paul Gladden, MD; Cindy Morris, PhD; Bennetta Horne, MS; Rhonda Coignet, MBA


The School of Medicine is pleased to announce several important changes and promotions with the SoM leadership:

Paul Gladden, MD, Associate Professor of Orthopaedics
Promoted to DIO and Associate Dean for GME
Director, Residency and Orthopaedic Trauma Service and Surgery at UMCNO, 
Surgeon, The United States Marshals and The New Orleans Police Department.

Dr. Gladden joined Tulane School of Medicine, Department of Orthopaedics as Associate Professor in 2009.  Dr Gladden had extensive training in Orthopaedic Trauma and was Chief of Orthopaedic Trauma surgery at the University of Florida, Jacksonville, where he also graduated from the police academy and served as a physician for the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office S.W.A.T. team.  Dr. Gladden continues to provide service to the United States Marshalls and the NOPD.  Dr. Gladden is currently Chief of Orthopaedic Trauma Service at University Medical Center.  Throughout his academic career, Dr. Gladden has been actively involved in graduate medical education.  In 2011 he was selected to become the Orthopaedic Residency Director and has been an active member of Tulane’s GMEC.  He was the UMC hospital representative to Tulane’s GMEC and was Associate Chief Academic Officer for UMC, participating in CLER visits and special review committees over the years.  In 2019 Dr. Gladden was asked to become Assistant Dean for GME and Assistant DIO to work alongside Dr. Jeff Wiese.  Recognizing the leadership Dr. Gladden has offered to the Tulane GME programs, Tulane has asked him to become DIO and has promoted him to Associate Dean. His efforts during this probationary period will be critical in helping the School of Medicine strengthen its educational programs and exceed the expectations of the ACGME.

Cindy A Morris, PhD, Professor of Microbiology
Promoted to Associate Dean for Admissions

Dr. Morris started her academic career at Tulane in 1993 as an assistant professor.  She received tenure in 2009 and has been an active researcher in the area of studying mechanisms of HIV-1 gene regulation and angiogenesis.  Even during her early career, Dr. Morris was always an active and supportive faculty member, not only by repeatedly serving on the MD Admissions committee but also as a dedicated interviewer.  She was selected through a competitive interview process to be the Assistant Dean for Admissions in January 2017.  During her oversight, Tulane School of Medicine has seen a marked increase in the volume and quality of applicants.  In addition, there has been a significant improvement in matriculation of diverse students.  Dr. Morris achieved this success despite the growing complexity of the admissions process, and intense competition for the most qualified students consistently increasing.  For these reasons, recognizing the importance of strong leadership at this time, the School of Medicine is promoting Dr. Morris from Assistant Dean to Associate Dean.  This promotion recognizes the valuable role she has and will continue to provide in the success of Tulane School of Medicine.

Bennetta C. Horne, MS
Named as Assistant Dean for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion while continuing her role as Director, Office of Multicultural Affairs

Ms. Horne started her academic career at Tulane in 2003 as an Operations Manager in the Center for Bioenvironmental Research (CBR).  While at the CBR she was promoted to Program Manager where she developed and implemented programs exposing underrepresented students to graduate education.  In 2011, she transitioned to the department of Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering where she served as a Grants and Contract Accountant while continuing her service building student programs.  In 2015 through a competitive process, she was selected to help the School of Medicine establish an Office of Multicultural Affairs.  Working with Dr. Morris and others, Ms. Horne has been tremendously successful in leading changes in the Admissions processes. Significant gains have been actualized in the number of traditionally underrepresented in medicine students matriculating at the SOM.  Recognizing the success of programs Ms. Horne helped develop, in 2018 she was asked to expand the Office to include faculty and resident diversity efforts and was promoted to Director of the SOM Office of Multicultural Affairs.  Ms. Horne will lead efforts to foster an all-inclusive environment for current and prospective students, residents, faculty, and staff, particularly from areas traditionally underrepresented in medicine. These populations include not only groups who identify through race but also through religious beliefs, sexual identity, as well as other non-traditional students.  The SOM Office of Multicultural Affairs will continue to work to increase cultural sensitivity of the student body, faculty, and staff as well as to enhance retention.  Recognizing that at this time, the SOM needs visible and stable leadership in these critical areas, Tulane is promoting Ms. Horne to Assistant Dean for Equity, Diversity and inclusion, and she will also keep the title of Director of the SOM OMA.

Rhonda Coignet, MBA (B’05)
Appointed as Senior Director for Graduate Medical Education

Since joining Tulane in 1996, Rhonda Coignet has provided leadership for several administrative, operational, student and externally related projects and initiatives with university-wide impact. Her previous positions have included Executive Director of Strategic Planning, Executive Director for Development Administration/Special Assistant to the Executive Vice President, and Interim Assistant Provost for Assessment & Institutional Research. Ms. Coignet’s extensive experience with policy and procedure development and implementation, and accreditation, as well as her significant understanding of higher education administration led to her selection in 2018 to oversee preparation for the School of Medicine’s 2019 accreditation site visit of the Liaison Committee for Medical Education (LCME), the result of which was a full 8-year accreditation with no major citations.  In 2019, Ms. Coignet was promoted to SOM Director of Accreditation and Special Programs, providing her expertise and administrative oversight to the Professionalism and Wellness Programs of the School, while also coordinating ongoing, continuing review of school performance around accreditation standards, including those for Graduate Medical Education.  In that role, she became deeply involved in preparing for the American Council of Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) visits that have occurred over the last 3 years, and in doing so, has become an invaluable resource for the GME program at the School of Medicine.  For this reason, she has been selected to become the Senior Director for Graduate Medical Education.  In this new role, Ms. Coignet will work closely with the Tulane’s DIO, Program Directors, Program Coordinators, Residents, Fellows, and others to help the program exceed ACGME’s expectations for quality in graduate medical education.

Please join us in congratulating Paul, Cindy, Bennetta and Rhonda on these appointments and in thanking Jeff for his service to our school.