College of Law > About > Centers & Institutes > Mary and Michael Jaharis Health Law Institute > Symposia > Featured Speakers
Afia Asamoah, JD, MPP, is Senior Counsel, Product, Regulatory, and Policy at Verily Life Sciences, formerly Google Life Sciences, an Alphabet company. She leads the product counsel, policy, and regulatory affairs teams, reporting to the General Counsel. Afia was recruited as the first lawyer to join the Google[x] life sciences team, Google’s business unit dedicated to developing moonshot solutions to solve global problems. Prior to joining Google, Afia counseled pharmaceutical, biotechnology, and medical device clients on a range of healthcare, regulatory, and compliance issues at Covington & Burling LLP. From 2009-2011, Afia advised senior leaders and staff as a Special Assistant in the Office of the Commissioner at the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. She received four awards while at the agency, including the FDA Commissioner’s Special Citation. Afia received her undergraduate degree from Harvard University, Masters in Public Policy from the John F. Kennedy School of Government, and her Juris Doctor from Harvard Law School.
Patrick M. McCarthy, MD, is Executive Director of the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute at Northwestern Medicine, the Heller-Sacks Professor of Surgery in the Feinberg School of Medicine and Chief of Cardiac Surgery. He has distinguished himself as a clinician, researcher, educator, and administrator in heart disease. Dr. McCarthy trained at the Mayo Clinic in General and Cardiac Surgery, at Stanford University for an Advanced Fellowship including heart and lung transplantation, and practiced at the Cleveland Clinic from 1990 until March 2004. While there, he was the George and Linda Kaufman Chair of Surgery and Surgical Director of the Kaufman Center for Heart Failure as well as Director of heart transplantation and mechanical circulatory support. Dr. McCarthy returned to his home in Chicago in 2004 when he was recruited to Northwestern. Dr. McCarthy has performed over 11,000 heart operations, including approximately 7,000 heart valve surgeries. He has authored or co-authored more than 450 papers and 50 book chapters. He has been on the editorial board of eight medical journals and has been an officer in numerous professional societies. In 2008, he won the
Socrates Award for teaching from the Thoracic Surgery Residents Association. Dr. McCarthy also has a joint appointment with the Department of Biomedical Engineering of Northwestern University due to his work educating young entrepreneurs (NUvention), and he has invented several medical products in clinical use. From 2004 until 2016, the volume of cardiac surgery at Northwestern quadrupled under Dr. McCarthy's leadership. Heart valve surgery, heart transplantation and mechanical support devices grew by more than 800%, and Northwestern became one of the largest heart valve surgery programs in the nation. The Northwestern heart and heart surgery program rapidly rose in the U.S. News & World Report rankings from unranked in 2006 to #7 in the US in
2017. Over 1200 physicians, nurses and support staff work in the Bluhm Cardiovascular Institute.
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