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Dr. Bohdan Pomahac Receives Named Professorship

November 17, 2022
by Cecelia Smith

Yale Corporation has named Dr. Bohdan Pomahac the Frank F. Kanthak Professor of Surgery (Plastic Surgery) at Yale School of Medicine. The endowed professorship stands among the highest honors bestowed on a faculty.

“Dr. Pomahac’s appointment is a testament to his influence as a trailblazing surgeon-scientist — someone whose curiosity and commitment to patient care has been foundational to medicine’s collective understanding of face transplantation,” said Department of Surgery Chair, Dr. Nita Ahuja.

Dr. Pomahac joined the Yale faculty in 2021 via Harvard Medical School, where he established his reputation as the world leader in vascularized composite allograft (VCA) transplantation. His team is credited for performing 10 of the 17 face transplantation procedures that have taken place in the United States to date. Dr. Pomahac currently serves as Division Chief of Plastic Surgery at Yale, and as Surgical Director for the recently established Face Transplant Program at Yale New Haven Hospital — one of only nine approved programs in the country.

"I am humbled by the privilege and responsibility to hold the endowed professorship in Dr. Kanthak’s name and continue the legacy of service in which the fund was established,” said Dr. Pomahac.

The Frank F. Kanthak Chair in Plastic Surgery Fund was established in 1997 via a bequest from the late Dr. Kanthak, a graduate of the Yale School of Medicine, Class of 1936, and contributor in the field of craniofacial surgery. Dr. Kanthak spent the foundational years of his career on the faculty at the University of Chicago. He was selected from the draft lottery in 1942 and took leave to serve. A veteran of World War II, Dr. Kanthak continued his career in Georgia on the faculty of Emory University School of Dentistry and on the staff of the Veterans Administration Hospital; affiliated with the Egleston, Grady, Emory University, Georgia Baptist, and Crawford W. Long and Piedmont hospitals.

Dr. Pomahac succeeds Dr. Stephan Ariyan, who held the professorship from 2016, until his retirement from clinical practice.

A formal ceremony honoring Dr. Pomahac’s appointment will be held in the fall of 2023.

Submitted by Stevi Kramer on November 18, 2022