Tennessee Physician Elected to the Board of Directors of the American Academy of Family Physicians
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237, Ext. 5223
As a board member of the AAFP, Blackwelder will advocate on behalf of family physicians and patients nationwide to inspire positive change in the U.S. health care system. He currently serves as residency program director of East Tennessee State University Family Physicians of Kingsport and as professor of family medicine at ETSU Quillen College of Medicine.
A member of the AAFP since 1980, Blackwelder has served on and chaired numerous committees and commissions whose work has focused on continuing professional development and education. He also was a delegate to the AAFP Congress of Delegates. Last year, the AAFP awarded Blackwelder its Exemplary Teacher of the Year Award.
A member of the Tennessee Academy of Family Physicians since 1992, Blackwelder served in several positions, including president. He has been a member of the board of directors for more than 10 years and has served in multiple capacities on numerous TAFP committees. He has represented the chapter at the AAFP Congress of Delegates since 2002. In 2008, the Tennessee AFP awarded Blackwelder its prestigious John S. Derryberry Distinguished Service Award.
In addition to caring for patients and serving in leadership roles for the AAFP, Blackwelder has dedicated a significant amount of his time to teaching medical students and residents. In fact, his dedication has earned him a plethora of outstanding teaching awards, including several awards from his local Caduceus Club, the Humanism in Medicine Award from the New Jersey Health Foundation and the Dean’s Teaching Award from ETSU. Additionally, Blackwelder was named Outstanding Family Medicine Attending of the Year numerous times and was selected Mentor of the Year in 2001 by the ETSU medical students. He has mentored more than 1000 medical students during his time at ETSU.
In 2005, 2006 and again in 2009, Blackwelder was featured in the Guide to Top Family Doctors published by the Consumers Research Council of America. Also this year, he received the Patient’s Choice Award from Vitals.com, a Web site that helps patients find a doctor who is right for them.
Early in his career, after he completed residency, Blackwelder served in the National Health Service Corps for many years as the only physician in the small town of Trenton, Ga. (pop. 1400). Wanting to do more for his patients, he developed a hospital practice that eventually changed health care for the better in Trenton.
For the past 17 years, Blackwelder has been affiliated with the Wellmont Holston Valley Medical Center in Kingsport, Tenn. His residency practice maintains a vigorous hospital presence as one of only two family medicine groups that still admit its own patients. He is the only family physician in Kingsport who practices obstetrics. Additionally, he has lectured nationally on complementary and alternative medicine.
Blackwelder earned his undergraduate degree in biology from Haverford College in Haverford, Pa., and his medical degree from Emory University in Atlanta, graduating cum laude and as a member of Alpha Omega Alpha Medical Honor Society. He then completed his residency at the Medical College of Georgia in Augusta serving as chief resident. Blackwelder is board certified by the American Board of Family Medicine and has the AAFP Degree of Fellow, an earned degree awarded to family physicians for distinguished service and continuing medical education.
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Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 110,600 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.
Approximately one in four of all office visits are made to family physicians. That is 240 million office visits each year — nearly 87 million more than the next largest medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care.
To learn more about the specialty of family medicine, the AAFP's positions on issues and clinical care, and for downloadable multi-media highlighting family medicine, visit www.aafp.org/media. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, please visit the AAFP’s award-winning consumer website, www.FamilyDoctor.org.