Ralph Waldo Emerson
"TO KNOW THAT EVEN ONE LIFE HAS BREATHED EASIER BECAUSE YOU HAVE LIVED.
THIS IS TO HAVE SUCCEEDED."
I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Family and Community Medicine at Baylor College of Medicine.
I have a demonstrated record of collaborative research, scholarly publication, teaching and advising, and participation in public health organizations and professional associations.
I have amassed a substantial and versatile proficiency in database development, data linkage, management, and analysis, program and systems evaluation, community engagement, and information dissemination.
I am a passionate public health professional committed to solving problems and creating conditions that enable people to lead healthy, productive lives.
Sucker of Life's Marrow
My history is derived from the cultural basket of Tampa's Cuban and Italian ancestry. As a third generation Tampa native, I was born into a family with rich cultural traditions.
I have become a feverish trailblazer who embraces nature, sports, and an active lifestyle (marathons...yes please!), and am a proud vegetarian committed to a healthy life and a sustainable, humane food system.
I'm dedicated and high-intensity, but am really a fun-loving character who doesn't take himself too seriously most of the time, and who feeds off of human interactions.
Most importantly, I am a lucky man who has been blessed with a beautiful wife, loving parents, and remarkable friends.
The introductory years of my life would be shaped, not by my hard-working parents, but by my abuela Estella. This sixty year-old Cuban woman, a mere friend of the family, practically raised me from a twelve week-old newborn to a grade school youngster. To her I owe the very fabric of my character; benevolence, honesty, the pursuit of knowledge and interaction with others. Albeit early in my life, these tenets would serve to build my integrity and moral fabric. My parents have always provided the unconditional love and support I needed to excel; however, an often tumultuous life made me come to the realization that not every day in life proceeds according to plan; life has its surprises, so I learned to seize each day in pursuit of my goals. Similarly, I learned to become independent, analytical, and eager to discover my role in life.
Tutelage in high school and college would serve as the impetus, and subsequently the driving force for unearthing my passion for knowledge and appeal to sports and fitness. Working and volunteering in the community fostered my affection for people, both friends and strangers, and my yearning to be a part of their lives. Progressively, the thought of and my desire to become a physician grew. I began to guide my education, employment, and spare time towards investigation of everything in a physicians world, from the seemingly chaotic medical hodgepodge in the ER to the ever-criticized managed care establishment. The lure of medicine culminated in my application and acceptance to the University of South Florida (USF) Morsani College of Medicine in 2002. However, after immense reflection and despite what I believed to be a strong passion to employ individualized patient care to treat disease and illness, I came to the self-realization that life as a physician would not best achieve my career and personal objectives. Despite being the single most difficult decision of my young life, hindsight and my discovery of the realm of public health have convinced me that withdrawing from medical school was the correct path for me to take.
Following my withdrawal, it was a most unique employment experience with the American Cancer Society that changed my life. For over twelve years (until late 2014), I lived, yes lived, at the Benjamin Mendick Hope Lodge on USFs campus, among cancer patients and their loved ones. I served as the resident Night Manager at this gorgeous facility, erected to provide free housing to cancer patients while undergoing treatment. I yearned to inject warmth, compassion, and genuine fun into the lodge environment, which ensured that we lessen emotional burden for our patients and caregivers. At the lodge I experienced miracles and a benevolence and compassion is lacking in the world in which we live. It kept me grounded, appreciative, and optimistic about the future.
And then I embarked on my career in epidemiology, the scientific cornerstone of public health. In my years as an epidemiologist for the USF Birth Defects Surveillance Program, chair of both the National Birth Defects Prevention Network’s Data Committee and Surveillance Guidelines and Standards Committee, and in my role on a 3-year, federally-funded R01 on comparative effectiveness research (CER), I have amassed a substantial and versatile proficiency in database development, as well as data linkage, management, and analysis. I also have experience with community engagement activities, specifically leveraging a multiple-criteria decision-making model to select and address a disparity issue of concern to the community within the maternal and child health populations in a socio-economically disadvantaged setting. I have published or have in-press over 70 peer-reviewed scientific articles (updated January 2017), most focusing on evaluation of surveillance programs and data systems, or on important technological and methodological issues in epidemiology. I have taught or co-taught Epidemiology Methods, Computer Applications for Public Health Researchers, and Public Health Database Management at the USF College of Public Health. In 2014, I began working as an Assistant Professor for the Baylor College of Medicine. That chapter of my story continues to be written. In July 2016, I was awarded Baylor's Outstanding Faculty Researcher Award. I now serve as the Director of Analytics for our Department's Center for Population Health Research, the Assistant Director of the Department's Primary Care Research Fellowship, and the 2017 President-Elect of the National Birth Defects Prevention Network.
I love being challenged, competing, teaching, learning, and experiencing life. I am blessed to have the woman of my dreams, Jennifer, as my wife. Albeit abbreviated and encapsulated, this is who I am - a compassionate, upright, intelligent, and devoted student, husband, and individual, eager to pursue his passion and be an outstanding credit to his profession.
Come see what I do
Curriculum vitae (CV)
My education, professional experience, teaching and mentorship, service activities, skills, and interests
Last updated January 2017
This CV is interactive!
I've placed hyperlinks throughout the document to facilitate navigation to universities, organizations, societies, and professional and social profiles.
Each published paper that has already been listed in PubMed also has a link that takes you directly there!
A sample of some of my recent papers designed to advance knowledge and improve health
Just click on the paper's image to view the paper in PubMed!
You can also see all of my peer-reviewed publications in PubMed by clicking here!
******NEW! from January 2017 ******
Evaluation of the Sensitivity and Accuracy of Birth Defects Indicators on the 2003 Revision of the U.S. Birth Certificate: Has Data Quality Improved?
Salemi JL, Tanner JP, Sampat DP, Rutkowski RE, Anjohrin SB, Marshall J, Kirby RS
Paediatric and Perinatal Epidemiology
******NEW! from November 2016 ******
Hyperglycaemia in infants with hypoxic ischaemic encephalopathy is associated with improved outcomes after therapeutic hypothermia: a post-hoc analysis of the CoolCap Study
Basu SK, Salemi JL, Gunn AJ, Kaiser JR
Archives of Disease in Childhood - Fetal and Neonatal Edition
The Relative Contribution of Data Sources to a Birth Defects Registry Utilizing Passive Multisource Ascertainment Methods: Does a Smaller Birth Defects Case Ascertainment Net Lead to Overall or Disproportionate Loss?
Salemi JL, Tanner JP, Block S, Bailey M, Correia JA, Watkins SM, Kirby RS
Journal of Registry Management
YEP, THERE'S AN APP FOR THAT
Several years ago, I created EpiTableCalcs for some basic 2x2 table calculations
to get students interested in one of the introductory principles in epidemiology.
Check out the cheesy promo video below with the fancy elevator music.
Download the app for free from here if you want a test drive!
This app will make you a more sensitive, specific human being ;-)
RUNNING DOWN A DREAM
I make a cameo in the start of the 2010 San Francisco Half Marathon
this is the happiest I would be all race amid the rolling hills
IN THE NEWS
Professional (and perhaps not so professional) notariety
One of the very few times growing up I actually had a picture that made it in the newspaper
Chosen to represent Hillsborough County in Sports Illustrated featuring hometown heroes Tony and Bertha Saladino
Interestingly, the cover of this SI issue featured Joe Montana's retirement...