We have been fortunate to have Dr. Janet Southerland serve as Editorial Review Group Chair for Dentistry for almost six years, disrupted only slightly by her move to University of Texas Medical Branch in Galveston shortly before Hurricane Harvey. Since 2013, we have sent her 282 titles and, so far, she and her reviewers have submitted 80 reviews, with more in the pipeline.
Dr. Southerland is a tenured Professor in the Department of Nutrition Metabolism and the Vice President of Interprofessional Education, Institutional Effectiveness, and Health Education Center at the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) in Galveston, Texas. In this role, Dr. Southerland oversees accreditation for the university, interprofessional education, and UTMB’s brand new Health Education Center (HEC). Scheduled to open its doors in June 2019, the center will feature 160,000 square feet of education space designed for simulation to prepare trainees for providing team-based patient centered care. The HEC will feature standardized patient, simulation, and virtual reality experiences for students in all health science disciplines, as well as classroom space, conference rooms, educational space, and administrative space to accommodate the planned growth of UTMB’s educational programs for the next 15 years.
Dr. Southerland has spent more than 26 years in academia in roles including dean, division chief and senior chief executive officer. She also has practiced dentistry for 30 years and is licensed to practice in North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Texas. She trained at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she received residency training in hospital dentistry along with a master’s in public health and PhD in oral biology. Dr. Southerland is also an experienced researcher and educator. She has a broad background with training in oral medicine, special needs dentistry, and oral and systemic disease with a focus on diabetes and periodontal disease. In addition, Dr. Southerland has conducted studies involving other disorders such as HIV, cardiovascular disease, intimate partner violence, and oral cancer. She has been involved in community-based research projects as well as longitudinal, cohort, and cross-sectional studies and survey data collection. She has coauthored book chapters and has served as a reviewer for grant-making agencies and various journals. Dr. Southerland has also served as an IRB chair and implemented programs to enhance team-based science by development of scientific working groups.
Many of her collaborators hail from diverse backgrounds that include basic scientists, physicians, behavioral scientists, and community collaborators. As principal investigator or co-investigator on NIH and other funded grants, she has laid the groundwork for serving in the role of mentor and collaborator on many research projects/programs by developing effective collaborations and partnerships with colleagues at UTMB as well as other academic institutions.