Professionalism Week 2017

Professionalism Week 2017 will be held on the Milwaukee Regional Medical Center campus and will include various events such as guest speakers, workshops and more. The week will focus on the theme of Transforming Culture through Empathy.

Monday, September 25

Helen Riess, MDThe Neuroscience and Practice of Empathy in Interprofessional Settings
12:00 pm-1:00 pm, MCW Health Research Center Auditorium

Helen Riess, MD, Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, Director of Empathy Research and Training in Psychotherapy Research Group, Massachusetts General Hospital

This session's objectives are to:

  1. Define and appreciate the importance of empathy in healthcare for patients and professionals
  2. Apply the empathy acronym to patient and interprofessional interactions
  3. Describe the basic tenets of the neurobiology and physiology of empathy
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Helen Riess, MD, is an Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School and Director of the Empathy and Relational Science Program in the Department of Psychiatry at Massachusetts General Hospital.   Dr. Riess has devoted her career to teaching and research in the neuroscience and art of the patient-doctor relationship.  Her research team at MGH conducts translational empathy research utilizing the neuroscience of emotions. 

Dr. Riess is a member of the Scientific Advisory Panel of the National Academy of Medicine, a core member of the Consortium for Research on Emotional Intelligence in Organizations  (convened by Dan Goleman), and has served on the Scientific Advisory Council of the Harvard Institute of Coaching.  

Dr. Riess’s groundbreaking empathy research, based on the neuroscience of emotions, received the 2013 Partners Healthcare Medical Education Research Award, the 2012 Harvard Coaching Institute Research Poster Award, and the 2013 SUNY Medical University Endowed Gilbert Humanism in Medicine Lecture Award.  Dr. Riess is an internationally recognized speaker on empathy, with a recent TEDx talk on “The Power of Empathy,” which has been viewed by over 200,000 viewers.  Her empathy training curricula are implemented nationally and internationally in healthcare, business and education. She is Co-Founder and Chief Scientific Officer of Empathetics Inc., a company that provides web-based empathy training and blended empathy and relational skills solutions.

Self-Awareness: Seeing Yourself Beyond Your Degree (Spotlight on Science)
12:00 pm-1:00 pm, MCW Alumni Center

Beverly Hutcherson, MS, Outreach and Communications Manager for Diversity and Inclusion, University of Wisconsin-Madison

Empathy is an interpersonal skill that is often not explored in natural science spaces. Our identity and training as scientists shape how we interact with our peers, students and how we determine value in interdisciplinary collaborations. We will work in small groups to dive deeper into our understanding of our individual identities and how we can improve upon valuing and coexisting with others who navigate life through a different lens.

Attendees will:

  1. Gain a deeper understanding of empathy
  2. Increase awareness of one's self
  3. Learn tips, tools and strategies that will increase skills in effective communication


Tuesday, September 26

Welcoming Diversity Exposure Workshop
7:45 am-12:00 pm, MCW Health Research Center, rooms H1210-1250

MCW Office of Diversity and Inclusion

The MCW Coalition Builders Team regularly offers the National Coalition Building Institute's (NCBI) award-winning Welcoming Diversity Exposure workshop which has been presented to thousands of groups throughout the world, including schools, colleges and universities, corporations, government agencies, trade unions, religious institutions, and community organizations.

Over 1,500 MCW employees and students have received support and leadership development through these workshops.

Cecille Sulman, MDHow to find empathy when you are struggling to connect with the family
8:00-9:00 am, Children's Hospital of Wisconsin Auditorium

Cecille Sulman, MD, Associate Professor of Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences, Chief, Division of Pediatric Otolaryngology, MCW

The goals of this panel presentation are to provide:

  1. Tools and principles to help guide empathetic interactions with patients
  2. Case presentations illustrating scenarios where providers struggle to reach common ground with patients
  3. Discussion from panel participants on how to connect with families in an empathetic fashion

Panelists include: Tom Robey, MD, Associate Professor of Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences (Pediatric Otolaryngology); Lyn Ranta, MD, Director of Physician Affairs, Children's Hospital of Wisconsin; and, Rainer Gedeit, MD, Professor of Pediatrics (Critical Care). 

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Cecille Sulman, MD, is board certified in Otolaryngology (ear, nose, and throat specialist) and Sleep Medicine, in addition to being a fellowship-trained pediatric otolaryngologist. She has a special interest in managing difficult airway and breathing problems, sleep disorders, sinus disease, and children with congenital anomalies, as well as managing general pediatric ear, nose, and throat problems. Dr. Sulman is interested in quality projects that help improve ear, nose, and throat care of children, from simple to complex solutions. She is the program director for the pediatric otolaryngology fellowship program, and is committed to training the future leaders in the field. Dr. Sulman is a strong advocate for patients and families, and works with the child's pediatrician and parents to provide the best and most informed care possible.

Jennifer Heinemann, PhDEmpathy and Mindfulness as Assets in the Role of Modern Healthcare
12:00 pm-1:00 pm, MCW Cardiovascular Center Conference Room, H4940-4950

Jennifer Heinemann, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychiatry, MCW

Participants will:

  1. Review the relationship between provider burnout and empathy
  2. Understand the benefits of empathy in healthcare, for the patients, providers and the system itself
  3. Discuss the relationship between mindfulness and empathy including mindfulness techniques to increase empathy

View the recorded presentation

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Jennifer Heinemann, PhD, received her undergraduate degree at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, WI. She received her master’s and doctoral degrees from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL. She completed her clinical internship at the Clement J. Zablocki VA Medical Center in Milwaukee, WI and her postdoctoral fellowship in rehab psychology at St. Luke’s Medical Center in Milwaukee, WI. Dr. Heinemann sees patients in the bariatric and metabolic weight loss clinics at Froedtert.

She specializes in helping individuals struggling with obesity, weight loss, and related health issues. She conducts pre-surgical evaluations to help patients optimize their weight loss journey to improve health. Dr. Heinemann’s academic interests include resident and medical/graduate students’ training and supervision as well as research in the relation of behavior and coping skills, including mindfulness, to weight loss and maintenance.

Brent BrazellWednesday, September 27

The Empathy Imperative in Leadership
9:00-11:00 am, MCW Health Research Center Auditorium

Brent Brazell, Vice President, Chief Learning Officer, Froedtert Health

It is imperative for leaders to understand the importance of using empathy when working with their direct reports and to be able to identify ways to customize empathic interactions when working with their staff members and colleagues. Just as important as using empathy, leaders must develop a keen sense of their own temperament and personality style and then be able to discern how and when to take into account the different personalities and styles of their direct reports and colleagues in order to be the most effective leader possible. In order to be most effective as an empathic leader, it is also important to incorporate emotional intelligence into everyday interactions to build trust with others.

View the recorded presentation

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Brent Brazell has worked in health care for over 20 years.  Brent began his career as a case worker in an outpatient mental health setting.  Over the course of his 10 year career in mental health, he also served as a team lead and an education specialist.   Brent obtained his master’s degree in Social Work in 1996.

In 2001, Brent transitioned to working as a leadership development consultant in an academic medical center. During this time, he also completed his Master’s Degree in Organizational Development.  He has trained extensively on diversity issues, behavioral interviewing, and coaching team members.

In 2008, Brent joined the Human Resources/Organizational Effectiveness department at Barnes-Jewish hospital in St. Louis, MO.  During the course of his employment at Barnes-Jewish, he has worked closely with the patient experience team and has created training materials to improve the patient experience in inpatient and outpatient settings.  He also developed tools for talent management, succession planning and performance management. 

Brent would then go on to serve as Senior Director of Learning & Leadership Development at Penn State Hershey Medical Center from 2014-2016.  While at Penn State, some of his key initiatives included developing leadership development activities, including the Inspired Leadership Institute, as well forming a multi-disciplinary team to address long-standing conflict and disruption in specific areas across the academic enterprise.

Now serving as Chief Learning Officer and VP of Human Resources at Froedtert Health since January of 2017, Brent continues to focus on organizational learning, organizational development, patient experience and staff engagement.

Brent is certified in programs such as Managing Inclusion, Targeted Selection, Love ‘em or Lose ‘em and is a Master Trainer with Development Dimensions International as well as True Colors.

Abbey Kruper, PsyDKristina Kaljo, PhDEmpathy - Personally and Professionally (OB/GYN Grand Rounds)
9:00-10:00 am, Department of Pathology Conference Room 247, Froedtert Hospital, Wisconsin Diagnostics Lab Building

Kristina Kaljo, PhD, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, MCW

Abbey Kruper, PsyD, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, MCW

Attendees will:

  1. Understand the importance of empathy within medical settings and medical education.
  2. Develop concrete skills for reflective listening.
  3. Learn specific questioning techniques to convey empathic listening.
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Dr. Kristina Kaljo joined the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology as the Instructional Designer in August 2014. She then was promoted to Assistant Professor in January 2017. Inspired by her experiences in the K-12 classroom, Dr. Kaljo transitioned her career to higher education and educational research at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. During her tenure there, Dr. Kaljo’s focus encompassed teaching, learning, and cultural responsiveness as they relate to adult learning, student learning, and professional development. Her dissertation titled, Exposing the Brilliant Facets of Pedagogical Content Knowledge: a Collective Case Study, reinforced the conceptual framework that educators must encompass both extensive content knowledge and a rich, culturally relevant pedagogical practice to provide excellent learning experiences. Thus, upon attaining her PhD in Urban Education, Curriculum & Instruction, and Urban Studies, Dr. Kaljo made the transition to medical education.

Currently, Dr. Kaljo has committed her efforts to education within medicine as well as the health and wellness of the surrounding community. Her belief is that educational scholarship is a cornerstone in the preparation and advancement of today’s physician. To address this, Dr. Kaljo investigates best practices among medical students, residents, and teaching faculty. In turn, women of all ages, races, and cultures receive the highest quality of care.

Recent scholarship includes distance learning with an emphasis on technology, residents as educators, and gender studies.


Dr. Abbey Kruper joined the Medical College of Wisconsin in 2013. She completed her undergraduate degree at Marquette University and received her Doctorate of Psychology with a specialization in Health Psychology from the Illinois School of Professional Psychology. Dr. Kruper went on to complete her Internship at the Carl T. Hayden VA Medical Center and her Post-Doctoral Fellowship in Behavioral Medicine at Loyola University Medical Center where she remained on faculty prior to joining MCW as Director of Transplant Mental Health Services. Dr. Kruper joined the Department of Obstetrics & Gynecology in 2016.

Dr. Kruper’s clinical interests include assessment and psychotherapy with specialization in adjustment to health status and treating co-existing psychological disorders. She works with patients to promote well-being through health behavior change and more adaptive coping. In the department of OB/GYN, Dr. Kruper focuses specifically on perinatal mental health as well as psychological aspects of infertility and cancer.

Dr. Kruper is an active member of the Society of Behavioral Medicine as well as adjunct instructor at Marquette University.

Bruce Campbell, MDNarrative Medicine, Close Reading and Reflective Writing:Art Derse, MD, JD DIY Techniques that Promote Resilience through Reflection
12:00 pm-1:00 pm, MCW Cardiovascular Center Conference Room, H4940-4950

Art Derse, MD, JD, Julia and David Uihlein Professor, Institute for Health and Equity, Director, Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities, MCW

Bruce Campbell, MD, Professor of Otolaryngology and Communication Sciences (Head and Neck Surgical Oncology and Reconstruction), MCW

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Arthur R. Derse, MD, MD, is Julia and David Uihlein Professor of Medical Humanities, and Professor of Bioethics and Emergency Medicine. He is director of the Center for Bioethics and Medical Humanities in the Institute for Health and Equity, and is director of the MCW Medical Humanities Program. He directs the M-1 Healer’s Art course and the M-4 Art of Medicine through the Humanities course, and utilizes reflective writing in teaching bioethics in the medical school curriculum. He is a past president of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities.

Bruce Campbell, MD is a Head and Neck Cancer Surgeon in the MCW Department of Otolaryngology and is a member of the Medical Humanities faculty in the Institute for Health and Equity. He participated in MCW’s writing group, The Moving Pens, and has published essays in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), Journal of Clinical Oncology, Narrative Inquiry in Bioethics, Yale Journal for Humanities in Medicine, and The Examined Life Journal. He blogs at Reflections in a Head Mirror.

Reviewing Articles and Grants with Rigor and Neil Hogg, PhDEmpathyRyan Spellecy, PhD
2:00-3:00 pm, MCW Medical Education Building, rooms 2050-2070

Ryan Spellecy, PhD, Associate Professor of Bioethics and Medical Humanities, and Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine, holds the Ursula von der Ruhr Professorship in Bioethics, MCW

Neil Hogg, PhD, Professor of Biophysics, Associate Dean, Graduate Students, Director, Redox Biology Program, MCW

This presentation will focus on how to incorporate empathy in the review process, recognizing that the article or grant we are reviewing is the result of someone’s hard work, yet still maintain high standards for scientific rigor.

Thursday, September 28

Natalie Fleury, JDMichelle Shasha, PhDConversations with the Ombuds: Empathy and Building the Emotional Intelligence of Groups
12:00 pm-1:00 pm, MCW Medical Education Building, room M2050

Michelle Shasha, PhD, and Natalie Fleury, JD, MCW Ombuds

Join MCW Ombuds Natalie C. Fleury, JD, and Michelle Shasha, PhD, for the first in a series of interactive lunch programs. For our first meeting, we’ll be discussing the article ;"Building the Emotional Intelligence of Groups" from the Harvard Business Review.

During this program we’ll discuss:

  • The Importance of Empathy and Trust for Effective Teams
  • The Three Levels of Emotional Interactions in Groups
  • How to Build Norms for Three Levels of Emotional Intelligence in Groups

Please take a few minutes and read through the article prior to the program.  If you’re having difficulty accessing the article through the link, contact the Ombuds Office.

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Michelle Shasha, PhD, is Assistant Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Medicine at MCW. She received her undergraduate degree from the University of Illinois-Urbana and her doctorate in clinical psychology at Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine. She also completed postgraduate training at the Austen Riggs Center in Stockbridge, MA. Dr. Shasha maintains a psychotherapy practice at the Tosa Center.

Natalie Fleury, JD, is Adjunct Professor of Law and Program Coordinator for Dispute Resolution at the Marquette University Law School. She also is the principal of Conflict Management Concepts, LLC, a dispute resolution consulting firm. Ms. Fleury earned her JD from the University of Wisconsin Law School and received a Graduate Certificate in Dispute Resolution from Marquette University. Ms. Fleury has more than 15 years of experience in mediation services, conflict management training and dispute systems design.

Jeanette Bauchat, MDCommunicating with Empathy: Creating more value than you think
5:30-6:30 pm, Froedtert Hospital Helfaer Auditorium

Jeanette Bauchat, MD, MS, Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

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Jeanette Bauchat, MD, MS, graduated from the University of Michigan with a bachelor in science in cellular and molecular biology. She obtained her medical doctorate from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. She completed her anesthesiology residency and chief year at Columbia University. She did a fellowship in obstetric anesthesiology and has now been a clinician, educator and researcher in the field of obstetric anesthesiology for 10 years at Northwestern University. She is currently the head of the obstetric anesthesiology section at Northwestern University Prentice Women’s Hospital where there are >12,000 deliveries a year.

Dr. Jeanette Bauchat serves as the Secretary for the Society of Obstetric Anesthesia and Perinatology (SOAP) and is an active member of the SOAP Patient Safety Committee. She completed a Masters in Healthcare Quality and Patient Safety and is the Chair of the Anesthesia Quality Management Committee within her department. She has lectured on the national level on topics of quality and safety on labor and delivery and her research areas of interest involve clinical safety and efficacy of neuraxial techniques and neuraxial opioids as well as in simulation education. Her educational interests include the role of empathy in medicine and its relationship to quality care.

Friday, September 29

Nate FilzenIncreasing Your Emotional Intelligence
8:00-9:00 am, MCW Medical Education Building, room M3077

Nate Filzen, Talent Development Consultant, MCW

Emotional intelligence is defined as the ability to comprehend our own emotions and to manage them effectively. People with high emotional intelligence are poised, outgoing and cheerful, have empathy for others, express their feelings directly but appropriately, and have a capacity for developing meaningful relationships. All of these traits are very important aspects of a collaborative, high achieving workplace. This program offers you techniques to increase and develop your emotional intelligence. It guides you through proven methods to apply emotional intelligence in the workplace to enhance employee relationships and increase productivity. The session objectives are to:

  1. Describe Emotional Intelligence theory and how it relates to leading
  2. Learn the five Emotional Intelligence competencies
  3. Apply behavioral strategies for emotional self-management
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During my time at MCW I have been able to expand my role as a training facilitator and speaker. In addition to being a certified Crucial Conversations and Crucial Accountability facilitator, I also conduct training classes on Interviewing, Selecting Top Talent, Increasing your Emotional Intelligence, Professional Communication in Difficult Situations, Leading Effective Meetings, DiSC Communication Styles, Understanding Generational Differences in the Workplace, Public Speaking, Trust and Building Relationships, and Managing Work Relationships at all levels, among others. 

Christina Tushman, MABeing a Resilient Leader
12:00 pm-1:00 pm, MCW Medical Education Building, Discovery Classroom

Christina Tushman, MA, Director of Leadership Development, Association of American Medical Colleges

Many factors contribute to a person’s ability to bounce back and maintain their well-being in the face of stress and adversity. One of those factors is cognitive and emotional training and flexibility. This 60-minute session will introduce you to concepts and practices for increasing your professional engagement and personal satisfaction by shifting how you see and think about the challenges you are facing. Whether you are a formal or informal leader, you can apply these concepts and practices in your day-to-day life to effectively lead yourself and others during challenging times.

Note: Concepts from this session are taken from the AAMC’s two-day Being a Resilient Leader workshop. This session does not cover mindfulness, work-life balance, stress management or physical fitness (wellness topics). It also does not address organizational-level interventions or practices for supporting wellness and resilience.

*Lunch will be provided based on registrations received by close of business on Friday, September 22.

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Christina Tushman, MA, is the Director of Leadership Development for the Association of American Medical Colleges, where she is responsible for creating impactful learning experiences for leaders in academic medicine. For the past 20 years, Ms. Tushman has led organizations in the design and development of outcome-oriented learning and performance-based solutions that have achieved measurable results and impact, including a leadership curriculum for a Fortune 50 company that successfully increased employee engagement and retention. Her work in effective learning design was recently recognized by the Association for Talent Development’s Excellence in Practice Award and featured in TD Magazine. Ms. Tushman has a master’s degree in communication from the University of Wisconsin.

Contact Us

Questions or comments about this celebratory week? Contact Vivian Dondlinger at 955-8714.