Longtime Surgery Chief at UAMS Honored With Chair

By Jon Parham

John B. Cone, M.D., known as a pioneer in working toward establishing the state’s first trauma system, accepted the chair as colleagues, family and friends filled the Fred Smith Auditorium at the UAMS Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute.

“This is a great honor that would not have been possible without the love, support and training I’ve received from many people who are here today,” said Cone, professor in the UAMS Department of Surgery. “Sharing this with family and colleagues is a tremendous pleasure and one that will not soon be forgotten.”

An endowed chair is the highest academic honor that can be bestowed by a university on its faculty. A chair can honor the memory of a loved one or a person’s accomplishments. It is supported with designated gifts of $1 million or more.

Cone earned his medical degree from UAMS in 1977 and completed a residency in general surgery from 1977 – 1982. His career at UAMS began in the early 1980s as an assistant professor in the Department of Surgery. He joined the UAMS Department of Pediatrics in 1988 and the Department of Anesthesiology in 1985. Cone was promoted to professor of surgery and associate professor of pediatrics in 1996.

Cone’s administrative roles at UAMS include serving as director of the UAMS Trauma Service, chief of the Division of General Surgery and medical director of the Surgical Intensive Care Unit. He helped to draft and pass the Arkansas Trauma Systems Act and chaired the Trauma Systems Advisory Council to assist in the development of a statewide trauma system, of which he was also selected as medical director.

“Dr. Cone’s contributions to medicine go far beyond changing lives here at UAMS and now stretch to all corners of the state,” said UAMS Chancellor I. Dodd Wilson. “He’s worked hard to raise the level of trauma care that will leave a lasting footprint on how it’s delivered to all Arkansans.”

The Norma and Nolie Mumey, M.D., Chair in Surgery was founded as the couple left a bequest to the College of Medicine that also supports student scholarships and the UAMS Historical Research Center. Mumey graduated from UAMS in 1916 and served as a surgeon in the Army during World War I. He established a practice in Denver, Co., in 1924 and held appointments at local hospitals and the University of Denver, and also lectured on medical history at the University of Colorado School of Medicine. As a flight surgeon in the Colorado National Guard, Mumey invented a portable depth perception and visual acuity box for testing pilots.

Cone has served as chief of the Division of General Surgery since 1990. He is certified by the American Board of Surgery and is a member of several professional societies, including the American College of Surgeons, the American Association for the Surgery of Trauma, the American College of Critical Care Medicine and the American Medical Association.

Cone’s research interests are the inflammatory response to injury and its regulation, metabolic regulation following injury and energy metabolism. His clinical interests are surgical infections, trauma, surgical complications, surgical care and burns.

UAMS is the state’s only comprehensive academic health center, with five colleges, a graduate school, a new 540,000-square-foot hospital, six centers of excellence and a statewide network of regional centers. UAMS has 2,775 students and 748 medical residents. Its centers of excellence include the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, the Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, the Myeloma Institute for Research and Therapy, the Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, the Psychiatric Research Institute and the Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging. It is the state’s largest public employer with more than 10,000 employees, including nearly 1,150 physicians who provide medical care to patients at UAMS, Arkansas Children’s Hospital, the VA Medical Center and UAMS’ Area Health Education Centers throughout the state. Visit www.uams.edu or uamshealth.com.