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Wilcox Tapped to Lead College of Medicine in Nashville


A. Brian Wilcox, Jr., MD, an alumnus of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center College of Medicine, has been named associate dean of Clinical Affairs and Graduate Medical Education of the College of Medicine in Nashville. Dr. Wilcox succeeds Gregory James, MD, who recently retired after leading the Nashville campus, based at Ascension Saint Thomas, since 2016.

Dr. Brian Wilcox

Dr. Wilcox is an accomplished clinician and health care leader in Middle Tennessee, most recently serving as president of Ascension Medical Group since 2020. He has worked with Ascension Saint Thomas for nearly 30 years in roles including chief physician executive of the Cardiovascular Service Line; chair and lead surgeon of Heart, Lung, and Vascular Surgery; chief of staff of Saint Thomas Hospital Midtown; and founding medical director of the Ascension Saint Thomas Craig Wound Care Center. Dr. Wilcox also currently serves as Ascension Saint Thomas’ chief clinical officer.

A 1986 graduate of the UTHSC College of Medicine, Dr. Wilcox is eager to continue to nurture and grow the great partnership between the college and Ascension Saint Thomas. “I’ve been a part of the graduate medical education processes here in Nashville for years, but this new role offers me the ability to reconnect to my roots more directly,” he said.

His goal to expand the college’s relationship with Ascension Saint Thomas is in line with UTHSC’s plan to strengthen long-standing clinical and educational partnerships with hospitals across Tennessee. In addition to Ascension Saint Thomas, these partner hospitals include Erlanger Health System in Chattanooga, the University of Tennessee Medical Center in Knoxville, and West Tennessee Healthcare–Jackson Madison County Hospital in Jackson.

“I am pleased Dr. Wilcox has accepted our offer to lead our Nashville campus,” said G. Nicholas Verne, MD, interim executive dean and vice chancellor for Clinical Affairs at the UTHSC College of Medicine. “Dr. James’ exceptional leadership has left the College of Medicine in Nashville on a good footing, and I have no doubt Dr. Wilcox will utilize his experience as a leader at Ascension Saint Thomas to continue to provide an outstanding education for our students and clinical practice for our patients.”

Dr. Wilcox is familiar with all the UTHSC College of Medicine campuses. In addition to completing medical school at the Memphis campus, he also completed his cardiothoracic surgery residency at UTHSC in Memphis, underwent training at the college’s Chattanooga campus, and worked at UT Medical Center in Knoxville, before landing in Nashville.

“The university is charged with creating clinicians for Tennesseans, and so to me, it makes great sense that I have stayed in Tennessee and have been a part of Tennessee health care,” he said. “I’m grateful for the opportunity the university has offered me, and I’ll be forever grateful for the training I received, which is remarkably high quality for somebody who wants to provide clinical care.”

As associate dean, Dr. Wilcox aims to continue to provide high-quality training and clerkship opportunities for all medical students, residents, and trainees in the accredited Graduate Medical Education program. Through exceptional training, curricula, faculty, and staff, he hopes to improve access to the health system for Tennesseans by providing a well-prepared clinical workforce.