Three Duke Psychiatry Faculty Awarded Distinguished Professorships

By Duke School of Medicine Communications

This spring, 18 faculty members in the Duke University School of Medicine have been awarded distinguished professorships. 

In total, 32 new distinguished professors across Duke University were approved by the Board of Trustees in February. Three of them are members of the Department of Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences. 

Distinguished professorships are awarded to faculty who have demonstrated extraordinary scholarship in advancing science and improving human health.

The recipients from Psychiatry & Behavioral Sciences are: 

Lisa Amaya-Jackson, MD, MPH 

Michelle Winn, MD, Distinguished Professor 

Lisa Amaya-Jackson

Lisa Amaya-Jackson, MD, MPH, is a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences. She is a child and adolescent psychiatrist whose work focuses on child trauma, post-traumatic stress disorder, and bringing effective treatments to community providers and service systems. Her research and training interests center on national efforts to increase access and quality of services for children through policy, training, and clinical strategies to create an evidence based, trauma-informed, mental health workforce. She is co-director of the UCLA-Duke National Center for Child Traumatic Stress and director of Duke Psychiatry’s Evidence-based Practice Implementation Center.  

Jonathan Posner, MD 

J. P. Gibbons Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry 

Jonathan Posner

Jonathan Posner, MD, is a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences. A child and adolescent psychiatrist, his research utilizes advanced MRI imaging to help characterize brain development and identify the biological basis of risk and resilience for mental illness in youth. He studies developmental trajectories of neural circuits, how these trajectories are impacted by adverse exposures, and how brain circuits are impacted by mental illness and treatment. He also explores the influence of family history, psychosocial adversity, and prenatal exposures on the development of neural circuits involved in executive functions and emotion regulation.

Kafui Dzirasa, MD, PhD

Eugene and Marie Washington Presidential Distinguished Professor

Kafui Dzirasa

Kafui Dzirasa, MD, PhD, is a professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences and a professor of biomedical engineering. He is a pioneering researcher whose expertise in neuroscience, psychiatry, and engineering is transforming the understanding of the biological mechanisms of mental illness. He uses engineering approaches to uncover how changes in brain circuits lead to psychiatric illness, including depression, bipolar disorder, and addiction. He aims to develop new devices to repair brain circuits in individuals suffering from these devastating illnesses. He is also a national leader who has distinguished himself as an advocate for diversity and inclusion in science.

See the full list of newly-awarded distinguished professorships at Duke University.

Read the article highlighting School of Medicine faculty who were awarded distinguished professorships.