Dr. Daniel Albo, a distinguished surgical oncologist, physician-scientist and educator who is vice chair of the Department of Surgery at the Medical College of Georgia at Augusta University, has been named department chair.
Albo, Floyd C. Jarrell, Jr. M.D. Distinguished Chair in Surgical Oncology who directs Surgical Oncology Services and Health Services Research at the Georgia Cancer Center and co-leads the Colorectal Cancer Team, begins his new job as chair July 1.
“Dan is a passionate and innovative professional with a vision and strategy for strengthening our Department of Surgery as well as our entire perioperative process to optimize the effectiveness and efficiency of care we provide to patients,” says Dr. David C. Hess, MCG dean and executive vice president for medical affairs and integration at AU. “Since his return to MCG three years ago, his many significant contributions include working closely with current surgery chair, Dr. Charlie Howell, to strategically identify and recruit key faculty, like an additional vascular surgeon, a second bariatric surgeon, a new pediatric urologist and an additional trauma surgeon, who will bring added breadth to the department.
“Dr. Howell, an MCG graduate who has served as chair for eight years and epitomizes the integrity and commitment of his alma mater to better health for Georgia and beyond, will remain with us to work on special projects. I cannot say enough about the personal integrity and drive of both of these great leaders.”
Albo returned to MCG in August 2015 from the Baylor College of Medicine and Dan L. Duncan Cancer Center. He previously served on the MCG faculty from 2002-04 before going to Baylor.
Albo was named MCG surgery department vice chair and surgeon-in-chief of AU Health in 2017. As surgeon-in-chief, he has worked closely with MCG Anesthesiology Department Chair Dr. Steffen Meiler to develop and implement a multidisciplinary perioperative process that ensures optimal care of patients, from their preoperative appointment through discharge and follow up.
At Baylor, his appointments included vice chairman of network development of the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery, director of surgical network development, chief of the Division of General and Surgical Oncology and director of the Gastrointestinal Oncology Program.
Albo has served as president of the Association for Academic Surgery, just completed a term as a senior member of the association’s Advisory Task Force and still serves on the association’s Colombian Surgical Association Course Task Force. His contributions to the association also include helping develop internationally used Academic Surgery Career Development courses.
He is colorectal section editor for the Society of Surgical Oncology Surgical Oncology Self-Assessment Program to help fellows prepare to take the American Board of Surgery’s subspecialty exam in Complex General Surgical Oncology and to provide continuing education opportunities and lifelong learning to established surgical oncologists.
Albo is an editorial board member for the Journal of Surgical Research. He is the editor of two surgical /textbooks, Operative Techniques in Surgery and Operative Techniques in Colon and Rectal Surgery. He was recently selected as a member of the American Surgical Association, the nation’s oldest surgical organization whose membership includes leading surgeons worldwide.
He is a 1991 graduate of the University of the Republic Medical School in Uruguay, and earned a PhD in molecular pathobiology in 1998 from the Medical College of Pennsylvania (now Drexel University College of Medicine). Albo completed his surgical residency, including a year as chief resident, and a surgical oncology fellowship at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center. He completed a yearlong research fellowship at the Medical College of Pennsylvania Department of Surgery focusing on tumor cell adhesion and growth and a six-month fellowship at the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center that also focused on tumor metastasis. He has a certificate in medical and health care management from Rice University’s Jones Graduate School of Business.
Early in his career, Albo also completed extensive additional training in minimally invasive surgical techniques, and since 2008 has served as course director for more than 30 courses, including many sponsored by the Association for Academic Surgery. He has developed a retraining program that enables successful conversion of traditional open colorectal surgical units into minimally invasive units, which reduce patient complications and speed their recovery.
His clinical interests include minimally invasive surgery for colorectal cancer and inflammatory bowel disease. His research has helped delineate how minimally invasive surgery and multidisciplinary cancer programs benefit a diverse range of patients – including the elderly, obese and minorities – and provide insight into cancer’s spread, including the development of nerve tissue, which increases tumor aggressiveness.
Albo was honored with Baylor College of Medicine’s Outstanding Service Award in 2015 and the next year received the Jorge I. Cué, M.D. Memorial Surgery Faculty Teaching Award from general surgery residents at MCG and AU Health.