UAMS’ James Graham, M.D., Named Chair-elect of National Accrediting Body for Medical Schools

By Linda Satter

The committee elected Graham in mid-February, and he will begin his one-year term July 1. He will ascend to the position of chair on July 1, 2025, for a one-year term ending July 1, 2026.

“This is a very prestigious committee, and we at UAMS are honored to have Dr. Graham in one of its top positions,” said UAMS Chancellor Cam Patterson, M.D., MBA. “We know he will serve the committee and the medical education community well.”

Graham has been on the committee since 2020, after being nominated by the American Medical Association, which jointly sponsors the committee with the Association of American Medical Colleges. In 2023, he was re-elected to a second three-year term.

Previously, during the last decade, he served on several site survey teams to help evaluate medical schools.

There are about 155 LCME-accredited medical schools in the United States and many more in the pipeline.

At UAMS, Graham has held several key educational roles in the College of Medicine for more than two decades. He has been the executive associate dean for academic affairs since February 2020. Previously, he was the associate dean for undergraduate medical education for 10 years, and before that, he was the director of the clinical medicine course for freshmen medical students from 1999 through 2017.

Graham earned his medical degree from UAMS in 1985 and then remained at UAMS for his general pediatrics residency. After completing an interdisciplinary training program at the National Center on Child Abuse and Neglect, followed by a pediatric emergency medicine fellowship at UAMS, he joined the faculty in 1991 as an assistant professor.

He was promoted to professor in 2005 and became chief of pediatric emergency medicine from 2005-2010.

At UAMS and Arkansas Children’s, Graham has been active in numerous education-focused committees, including the College of Medicine Curriculum Committee and the Undergraduate Medical Education Competencies Committee.

His teaching awards include the Gold Sash and Red Sash awards, and he is a three-time winner of the Educator of the Year award in the Department of Pediatrics.

From 2008 through 2014, during the development of Arkansas’ statewide trauma system, Graham chaired the Governor’s Trauma Advisory Council.


UAMS is the state’s only health sciences university, with colleges of Medicine, Nursing, Pharmacy, Health Professions and Public Health; a graduate school; a hospital; a main campus in Little Rock; a Northwest Arkansas regional campus in Fayetteville; a statewide network of regional campuses; and eight institutes: the Winthrop P. Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jackson T. Stephens Spine & Neurosciences Institute, Harvey & Bernice Jones Eye Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute, Donald W. Reynolds Institute on Aging, Translational Research Institute, Institute for Digital Health & Innovation and the Institute for Community Health Innovation. UAMS includes UAMS Health, a statewide health system that encompasses all of UAMS’ clinical enterprise. UAMS is the only adult Level 1 trauma center in the state. UAMS has 3,275 students, 890 medical residents and fellows, and five dental residents. It is the state’s largest public employer with more than 12,000 employees, including 1,200 physicians who provide care to patients at UAMS, its regional campuses, Arkansas Children’s, the VA Medical Center and Baptist Health. Visit or Find us on Facebook, X (formerly Twitter), YouTube or Instagram.