Biographies of the 2007 Laureate Award Honorees

The Texas Chapter presented its highest award to three distinguished members Nov. 3 at the 2007 Annual Scientific Meeting held at Moody Gardens Hotel in Galveston. Delbert L. Chumley, MD, FACP; Edith Irby Jones, MD, MACP; and Joseph Viroslav, MD, FACP; were named Laureates of the Texas Chapter of the ACP.

The Laureate Award honors Fellows and Masters of the ACP who have demonstrated by their example and conduct an abiding commitment to excellence in medical care, education, or research, and in service to their community, the Chapter, and the ACP.

Delbert L. Chumley, MD, FACP

Del Chumley was born September 22, 1945, and grew up in San Antonio, Texas. He graduated from Texas A&M University and then the University of Texas Medical Branch. He remained in Galveston for an internship and residency in internal medicine, and subsequently served as Chief Resident in the Department of Internal Medicine, and as a fellow in gastroenterology. He became board certified in internal medicine in 1974 and in gastroenterology in 1976.

After completion of his training, Dr. Chumley moved to San Antonio where he set up solo practice in gastroenterology, and he also became affiliated with UT Health Science Center in San Antonio. He rapidly became a pioneer in the field of therapeutic endoscopic retrograde cholangio-pancreatography, and taught many gastroenterology fellows and other gastroenterologists about this procedure and its nuances. He subsequently has built his group into one of the most respected gastroenterology practices in Texas. His career has exemplified excellence in patient care, science, medical education, and professionalism.

Although very busy with his patients and practice, Del has most unselfishly served internal medicine, gastroenterology, and the profession of medicine. He has been a fellow in the American College of Physicians since early in his career. He served on the Board of Directors of the Texas Academy of Internal Medicine, and as president of the Texas Academy of Internal Medicine Services. He was a recipient of the first TAIM Services Advocate of the Year Award.

In addition to his educational and scientific contributions, he has served the American College of Gastroenterology as a governor and a member of the Board of Trustees, and was awarded the ACG Senior Governor and William D. Carey awards. He also served Texas for ten years as a liaison with Medicare.

At the state level, Del has been a bell weather member of Texas Society for Gastroenterology and Endoscopy (TSGE), nurturing its growth from a small organization, run out of his office, to a large successful society that is a model for other states. He served as president of the TSGE, organized the CME program for many TSGE meetings, and served as TSGE Treasurer for 17 years!

Dr. Chumley has been a prominent advocate for medicine at the state level through the Texas Medical Association. He and his wife Louise have been faithful participants in First Tuesdays at the Capitol while the State Legislature is in session, and they worked particularly hard for medical tort reform. It is a tribute to their leadership that Bexar County passed tort reform by a large margin. Dr. Chumley is currently president of the large Bexar County Medical Society

As a founding member and the first president of the Texas A&M Medical/Dental Society, Dr. Chumley has used his leadership skills to build this philanthropic organization of A&M graduates, whose mission is to award scholarships to deserving TAMU students pursuing medical or dental careers.

Del continues in active private practice in San Antonio, and is a Clinical Professor of Internal Medicine at UTHSC San Antonio. He and Louise, his dynamic wife of 33 years, have three adult children, including two who are pursuing careers in health care (internal medicine and nursing).

The Texas Chapter is pleased to honor Delbert L. Chumley, MD, FACP, as a Laureate for 2007.


Edith Irby Jones, MD, MACP

Dr. Jones received her medical degree from the University of Arkansas and completed her internal medicine training at Baylor College of Medicine. She entered private practice after her medical training and currently practices in each of the hospitals in the Texas Medical Center in Houston. While Dr. Jones is recognized as one of our country's most 
visible and outstanding representatives of professional women and African Americans, she is truly at the top levels of a career in medicine and service to humanity.

The awards section of Dr. Jones's Curriculum vitae is 7 pages long beginning with Woman of the Year in Houston in 1965, to the 10th Annual Louis Stokes Community Visionary Award in Cleveland, Ohio, in 2005, to being recognized with a professorship in 2007 by Weill Medical College of Cornell University. In between, the list of recognitions Dr. Jones has received resembles a catalog of available local and national awards.

There has been an ongoing battle for important partnerships with this medical leader between Texas, where her medical career largely was developed, and Arkansas, where she graduated from medical school. She received the Houston League of Business Professional Woman Achievement Award. The State of Arkansas then recognized her by dedicating May 4, 1979, "Edith Irby Jones Day." Five years later the Mayor and City Council of Houston passed a resolution to establish Edith Irby Jones Recognition Day in Texas. The competition intensified the following year when Arkansas Governor William Jefferson Clinton declared Dr. Edith Irby Jones Day in his state. Once again, she received recognition by proclamation of the Houston City Council.

Dr. Jones was recognized as one of the most influential Black Americans by Ebony Magazine and later by the same magazine as one of the 100 most honored Black Physicians in the U.S. Howard University gave her the "Salute to Black Women Award" and she was inducted into the "Texas Black Women's Hall of Fame" in Austin. She received a Presidential Citation from President William Clinton and later the Distinguished Service Congressional Award in Washington, DC. She has received four honorary doctorates from colleges in Missouri, Mississippi, and Tennessee. Dr. Jones currently holds volunteer faculty appointments with both Baylor College of Medicine and the University of Texas Medical School at Houston.

Dr. Jones has been proud of her involvement with the American College of Physicians. She was elected to Fellowship in 2001 and elected to Mastership in April 2007. In 2000, she received the first Volunteerism and Community Service Award from TAIM, the Texas Chapter of the ACP.

For her contributions to humankind, she was recognized by the Indiana General Assembly for Contributions Improving Lives of the Poor and Underserved. Dr. Edith Irby Jones is a Living Legend in American Medicine and Volunteerism. She sits at the head table in our state, in Arkansas, and in our country at large, as one of our top civic leaders, role models, physicians and healers.

The Texas Chapter is proud to recognize Edith Irby Jones, MD, MACP, as a Texas Laureate.


Joseph Viroslav, MD, FACP

Dr. Viroslav was born February 15, 1938, in San Jose, Costa Rica, where his parents immigrated after escaping Poland. He completed medical school at Universidad Nacional Automa de Mexico in Mexico City and 20 months of internal medicine residency at Mount Sinai Hospital in Cleveland, Ohio, before the US Army called him to serve as a physician at Fort Bliss and in Viet Nam. Following his military obligations, he completed his internal medicine residency at Baylor College of Medicine in 1968. He then was chosen to be the chief resident at Ben Taub Hospital in Houston.

Following his internal medicine residency, Dr. Viroslav began training in infectious diseases at Baylor under the auspices of Temple Williams, MD, FACP, and then in 1971 completed a pulmonary fellowship at Baylor with Paul Stevens, MD, FACP. Following his fellowship, he joined the faculty in the pulmonary division of the Department of Internal Medicine at Baylor.

In 1972, St. Paul Hospital in Dallas recruited Dr. Viroslav to develop their pulmonary services and critical care units, where he has remained ever since. He has served St. Paul in various capacities during his career as chief of pulmonary and respiratory therapy, director of the internal medicine residency, chief of internal medicine, and as president of the medical staff. He was instrumental in encouraging St. Paul to be acquired by UT Southwestern Medical School, where he is a clinical professor of internal medicine.

Dr. Viroslav is in private practice and directs Southwest Pulmonary Associates, a group of 12 pulmonologists, who provide pulmonary and critical care services to hospitals in the Dallas and Irving communities.

A long time member of the American Medical Association, American Thoracic Society, American College of Chest Physicians, and the American College of Physicians, Dr. Viroslav advanced to fellowship in the ACP in 1993. He has served on the Board of Directors of the Dallas County Medical Society.

When Dr. Viroslav was recruited to Dallas in 1972, he developed the first computerized pulmonary function laboratory in the North Texas area (the computer was larger than most pulmonary function laboratories at that time), and expanded the laboratory to include plethysmography, diffusion, lung compliance, and tonometry. He also introduced the Swan Ganz catheter to the Dallas campus as a clinical bedside tool.

The Dallas Rehabilitation Institute recognized his interest in pulmonary physiology and recruited him, along with a noted spinal cord injury surgeon, to develop a respiratory therapy protocol for these patients. With the respiratory therapists and his colleagues, he developed muscle strengthening techniques and reintroduced the use of noninvasive methods of ventilation, some of which had not been used since the polio epidemics. Under his direction, use of Cuirass ventilators, iron lungs, and pneumobelts allowed removal of many patients' tracheostomy tubes, so that they could carry on normal conversations and experience fewer instances of pneumonia. He then developed innovative masks covering the nose, the mouth, or both which when connected to positive pressure ventilators allowed these patients to be successfully ventilated without the need for tracheostomies, the normal method used in spinal cord injury patients. Some of the masks became the prototype for the mass produced equipment used today.

With the success of the noninvasive ventilation in the spinal cord injury patients, he expanded the protocol to patients with chronic neuromuscular diseases such as post-polio, amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, and muscular dystrophy. He now is the pulmonary consultant for these clinics at UT Southwestern and has one of the largest noninvasive programs in the country.

Dr. Viroslav has been a fervent supporter of medical education throughout his career and is beloved by his students. He initially served on the advisory committee of El Centro College's respiratory therapy program and welcomed these students to his department.

With his knowledge of pulmonary physiology and the sophistication of the pulmonary laboratory, the UTSW pulmonary fellowship program included rotations with Dr. Viroslav as an integral part of their curriculum. These rotations and the pulmonary rotations on his service by internal medicine residents and family practice residents were always a favorite. Dr. Viroslav became the director of the internal medicine department in 1976, a position he held until 1998. He still remained involved in the education of internal medicine residents as an ICU attending, an internal medicine ward attending, and now is an attending physician in the pulmonary clinic at Parkland Memorial Hospital, a teaching institution of UTSW. In recognition of his efforts, both the internal medicine and family practice residents have acknowledged him as teacher of the year.

Despite the time commitments to his students, colleagues, and patients, he will claim his greatest accomplishments are his family's successes. He has been married to his wife, Fannie, for over 44 years and has 4 children: Sergio, an orthopedic surgeon; Erika, an elementary school teacher; Ariana, an attorney; and Andres, an investment banker. He has 12 wonderful grandchildren. He not only has been known as a father and grandfather but also as a baseball and basketball coach, and more recently as a fervent supporter in the bleachers.

Joseph Viroslav manifests all of the qualities inherent in being a physician Ð especially scholarship, modesty, and integrity. He has earned the respect of all of his colleagues, advanced the care of his patients with respiratory disorders, and continues to serve as a resource for physicians in training. For all of these qualities, the Texas Chapter of the ACP is pleased to bestow the Laureate Award on Joseph Viroslav, MD, FACP.