Anesthesiologists Raise $634,000 for Pablo Chair

By Ben Boulden

Oct. 12, 2012 | If money equals speech, then the anesthesiologists of the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences (UAMS) have spoken loudly in praise of Carmelita S. Pablo, M.D., chair of the Department of Anesthesiology in the UAMS College of Medicine.

Carmelita S. Pablo, Jennifer Aunspaugh, Kristen Lienhart, Danny Wilkerson, Josh Chance, Brooks Gentry, Timothy Martin, Kim Golden, Sushma Thapa, Richard Clark, Jesus Apuya, from left, all UAMS physicians, hold up a banner displaying the total amount raised to endow an academic chair in Pablo’s honor. Even more money has been raised in recent weeks.


In about 10 months, starting in the fall of 2011, they raised $634,000 toward creating the Carmelita S. Pablo, M.D., Endowed Chair in Anesthesiology — nearly two-thirds of  the $1 million it takes to create an endowed chair at UAMS. “We wanted to do this to recognize her 31-year commitment to providing education and training to all these residents,” said Tim Martin, M.D., professor of anesthesiology in the UAMS College of Medicine. “This will be a worthy recognition for Dr. Pablo, who has devoted years of work to the university and to the patients who have benefitted from her consistent, steady service.”

An endowed chair is the highest academic honor a university can bestow on its most distinguished faculty. It is created by gifts totaling $1 million or more, which is invested and the income used to support initiatives directed by the chair holder.

Pablo’s interest in anesthesiology began on a medical mission trip as a medical intern. She was administering ether by drops, and the physician with whom she was working during the mission saw her focus. He told her she would be a good anesthesiologist.

She received her medical degree in 1968 from the University of Santo Tomas. At Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, she completed her residency, followed by an anesthesiology fellowship at UAMS.

She joined UAMS in 1981. After serving in 2001 as interim chair of the UAMS Department of Anesthesiology, she was appointed permanently to the position in 2002. Pablo is a tenured professor in the department and an associate professor of orthopaedic surgery. She has taught more than 1,000 residents during her 31 years at UAMS.

Highly regarded by her faculty colleagues, residents and students, she has received the Red Sash Award three times in recognition for excellence in medical student education and the Golden Apple Award as outstanding faculty of the year.

Pablo said it’s a wonderful honor to have an endowed chair named for her. “I’m humbled that so many of my colleagues and former students would help make this possible and create a lasting legacy for the Department of Anesthesiology.”

Pablo said the investment income from the endowed chair will be put to good use.

“Our department always strives to use our resources as wisely as possible. With this endowment, we now will be able to allow more of our residents or faculty to have continuing education opportunities that otherwise might have been impossible,” she said.

She also sees the fundraising as part of a longer-term plan to raise the profile of the department and be even more competitive in recruiting physicians to the department.

Chasse Conque, director of development for the College of Medicine, said fundraising got off to a fast start. “To be at this point in less than one year is remarkable. It says a great deal about Dr. Pablo and a great deal about the faculty and staff in anesthesiology. There is a great sense of camaraderie within the department.”

Since that initial fundraising, other donations have come in, bringing the total to $710,000 in cash and pledges. Conque is hopeful other former anesthesiology residents will help the department reach their $1 million goal.

“When visiting with our alumni who trained under Dr. Pablo, you quickly learn how beloved she is and the impact she has had on so many,” Conque said.

Martin, who helped spearhead the department’s effort, said the pace also has exceeded his expectation. “It’s been a gratifying experience,” he said.

“We are grateful for the many contributions by our anesthesiology faculty,” College of Medicine Dean Debra Fiser said. “Raising $710,000 to honor Dr. Carmelita Pablo is a remarkable accomplishment. This speaks to their high personal regard for her and also to their commitment to UAMS. We are confident this will play a major role in completing the endowed chair.”

For information on how to support the endowed chair, contact Chasse Conque at 501-526-7399 or