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Atrium Health Navicent’s Dr. Dennis Ashley Receives 2023 Research Award

Established Investigator in Clinical/Population Science Award is presented by Wake Forest University School of Medicine

Dr. Dennis Ashley, trauma medical director for Atrium Health Navicent The Medical Center, has been recognized by Wake Forest University School of Medicine for his contributions to clinical research. A clinical and academic leader, Ashley serves as the Will C. Sealy Endowed Chair and Professor of Surgery for Mercer University School of Medicine. He was presented with the 2023 Established Investigator in Clinical/Population Science award at the 2023 Research Awards Day Program on Nov. 8 at Wake Forest University School of Medicine in Winston-Salem, North Carolina.

Since 1997, the Wake Forest University School of Medicine Research Awards have been awarded to peer-nominated investigators exhibiting the most outstanding research contributions within 14 unique categories. Ashley has been noted for making major contributions to his field through establishing an important research program and contributing significantly to the research environment through mentoring, scientific leadership, collaboration and service to both the academic and scientific community.

In addition to his work as trauma medical director and professor of surgery, Ashley has served as chair of the Georgia Trauma Commission (GTC) since its inception in 2007, leading the development of Georgia’s trauma system. During his time with GTC, Ashley led the charge to secure sustainable funding for trauma care. Atrium Health Navicent The Medical Center is central and south Georgia’s only American College of Surgeons verified adult Level I trauma center and one of only five adult Level I trauma centers in Georgia.

Earlier this year, Ashley received The Trauma Center Association of America’s annual Award of Distinction for Outstanding Leadership.

“Dr. Ashley is a resource not just for Atrium Health Navicent’s patients, but for all of the students and residents he encounters as a professor for Mercer University’s School of Medicine. He’s known in the medical community for his research and skilled clinical work, and has made countless contributions to trauma programs across the state,” said Atrium Health Navicent Chief Medical Officer Dr. Patrice Walker. “His contributions to advancements in the field are significant, and the breadth and depth of his knowledge is invaluable. Congratulations to Dr. Ashley on this muchdeserved recognition!”

About Atrium Health Navicent

Atrium Health Navicent is the leading provider of health care in central and south Georgia and is committed to its mission of elevating health and wellbeing through compassionate care. Atrium Health Navicent is part of Advocate Health, which is headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, and is the third-largest nonprofit health system in the United States, created from the combination of Atrium Health and Advocate Aurora Health. Atrium Health Navicent provides high-quality, personalized care in 53 specialties at more than 50 facilities throughout the region. As part of the largest, integrated, nonprofit health system in the Southeast, it is also able to tap into some of the nation’s leading medical experts and specialists with Atrium Health, allowing it to provide the best care close to home – including advanced innovations in virtual medicine and care. Throughout its 125-year history in the community, Atrium Health Navicent has remained dedicated to enhancing health and wellness for individuals throughout the region through nationally recognized quality care, community health initiatives and collaborative partnerships. It is also one of the leading teaching hospitals in the region, helping to ensure viability for rural health care for the next generation. For more information, please visit

About Advocate Health

Advocate Health is the third-largest nonprofit integrated health system in the United States – created from the combination of Advocate Aurora Health and Atrium Health. Providing care under the names Advocate Health Care in Illinois, Atrium Health in the Carolinas, Georgia and Alabama, and Aurora Health Care in Wisconsin, Advocate Health is a national leader in clinical innovation, health outcomes, consumer experience and value-based care, with Wake Forest University School of Medicine serving as the academic core of the enterprise. Headquartered in Charlotte, North Carolina, Advocate Health serves nearly 6 million patients and is engaged in hundreds of clinical trials and research studies. It is nationally recognized for its expertise in cardiology, neurosciences, oncology, pediatrics and rehabilitation, as well as organ transplants, burn treatments and specialized musculoskeletal programs. Advocate Health employs nearly 155,000 team members across 68 hospitals and over 1,000 care locations and offers one of the nation’s largest graduate medical education programs with over 2,000 residents and fellows across more than 200 programs. Committed to equitable care for all, Advocate Health provides nearly $6 billion in annual community benefits.