UAMS Invests Mauricio S. Garcia, M.D., in Jerome S. Levy, M.D., Chair in Gastroenterology and Hepatology

By Andrew Vogler

Garcia, who is a distinguished physician and esteemed leader in the field of gastroenterology and hepatology, is an associate professor and chief of the UAMS Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology in the College of Medicine’s Department of Internal Medicine.

“I have been granted the privilege of leading one of the most important divisions at UAMS, filled with excellent colleagues and co-workers who I want to lead to the next level for gastroenterology and hepatology,” said Garcia. “We have done greats things but are not near where I envision we will one day be — there is much to come and many projects to fulfill.”

An endowed chair is among the highest academic honors a university can bestow on a faculty member. An endowed chair is established with gifts of at least $1 million, which are invested, and the interest proceeds used to support the educational, research and clinical activities of the chair holder.


Mauricio S. Garcia, M.D., addressed guests at his investiture.Evan Lewis

“Those named to a chair at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences are among the most highly regarded scientists, practitioners and professors in their academic fields,” said Stephanie Gardner, Pharm. D., Ed.D., UAMS provost and chief strategy officer. “I’d like to offer a special thanks to the Dr. Jerome S. Levy family and the many of you here today that made this chair a reality.”

Established in 1979, the chair was created to recognize Jerome S. Levy’s, M.D., dedication to the medical needs of Arkansas. In addition to 49 years of service to UAMS, Levy served on the board of the Leo N. Levi Hospital in Hot Springs, Arkansas, and was governor for the American College of Physicians for Arkansas for nine years. Levy also served on the boards of numerous medical societies and received the Distinguished Service Award and Robert S. Abernathy Award in recognition of his contributions to the medical community.

“In Arkansas, the bottom line is that citizens across our state ultimately benefit from the gifts that create endowments, and from the service of those who hold endowed chairs,” said Steven Webber, M.D., dean of the College of Medicine and UAMS executive vice chancellor. “As a prestigious honor, endowed chairs help us recruit and retain world-class physicians, educators and scientists, and they then support the vital work and vision of the exceptional faculty members and leaders who hold these endowments.”

Garcia earned his medical degree from the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico in 2004 and completed his internal medicine residency and gastroenterology fellowship at the prestigious Instituto Nacional de Ciencias Medicas y Nutricion, both in Mexico City. He further honed his skills in advanced transplant hepatology at the University of Nebraska Medical Center in Omaha.

Garcia first joined UAMS as an assistant professor in the Division of Gastroenterology and Hepatology, where he directed the primary liver tumor clinic and later assumed the role of director of hepatology services and transplant medical director until 2020. He then contributed significantly to the transplant program at Washington University in St. Louis as an associate professor before returning to UAMS in 2022.

Garcia family

Mauricio S. Garcia, M.D., was joined by his family at the ceremony.

Garcia has a wealth of expertise and experience in the management of liver diseases, with a focus on alcohol-related liver disease, liver transplantation and hepatocellular carcinoma. His contributions to the field are widely recognized both nationally and internationally, as evidenced by his extensive publication record and numerous speaking engagements on various aspects of liver disease care. Under his leadership, the gastroenterology and hepatology program is rapidly growing with the goal to provide fully comprehensive gastroenterology and hepatology care with the highest standards of quality.

“Mauricio, this chair is a well-deserved distinction to your hard work and dedication to academic medicine, your gastrointestinal team, your faculty and your trainees — please continue making us proud,” said Andres Duarte, M.D., Ph.D., professor of medicine and the director of liver transplant medical at Northwestern University in Chicago.

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.