Excellence in Service and Professionalism

The Excellence in Service and Professionalism award is presented to the physician who actively promotes a culture that embraces, expects and rewards the delivery of patient- and family-centered care.

Yonatan Yohannes, M.D.

Physician, Adult Emergency Department

Johns Hopkins Howard County Medical Center

Yonatan Yohannes exemplifies service and professionalism in the adult emergency department. A steadfast leader and a team player, he is respectful and helpful to his colleagues. He educates and supports others in his areas of expertise, and he is always willing to go the extra mile to ensure a patient receives the best quality treatment possible. A colleague shares: “I was triaging someone who looked like they needed urgent help, and I asked Dr. Yohannes to take a look. Even though he wasn’t assigned to the patient, he stopped what he was doing and immediately roomed the patient.” The adult emergency department team is made better by Dr. Yohannes’ team spirit and generosity.

Yonatan Yohannes, M.D.

Michelle Smith, M.D.

Physician, Cardiovascular Critical Care

Heart Institute, Johns Hopkins All Children’s Hospital

Michelle Smith is a pediatric critical care physician in the cardiovascular intensive care unit (CVICU). She deftly balances her roles in providing direct patient care, teaching residents and fellows, and collaborating with CVICU team members on quality initiatives and other programs.

Dr. Smith has chaired several hospital-wide committees during the past two decades, including the Pharmacy and Therapeutics Committee, which she led for 10 years. She is a member of the medical emergency team, and she shares her expertise as an educator in the Center for Medical Simulation and Innovative Education, guiding learners as they hone their skills and prepare for critical situations. In addition, Dr. Smith served as vice chief of the medical staff and then chief of the medical staff during a four-year period beginning in January 2020. Her tenure as chief marked the first time that women held all three medical staff leadership roles.

“Dr. Smith has been the definition of service excellence and professionalism over the past few years,” a colleague notes. “She is the ultimate role model for any medical staff member.”

Michelle Smith, M.D.

Judy Huang, M.D.

Vice Chair, Neurosurgery, Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine

Director, Neurosurgery, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center

As a cerebrovascular neurosurgeon, Judy Huang treats complex medical problems and manages some of the hospital’s sickest patients. She is always appreciative of the valuable contributions of the various teams that help take care of these patients who are critically ill, including colleagues from neurology, neurocritical care, anesthesia, geriatrics, emergency medicine, radiology, physical medicine and rehabilitation, nursing and social work.

Dr. Huang is also the director of the neurosurgery residency program, in which she plays a pivotal role in training the next generation of neurosurgeons. She fosters a collaborative environment between faculty members and residents through hands-on training, research opportunities and clinical care.

Dr. Huang is a model physician, surgeon and educator. The kindness and patience she shows others is truly inspiring.

Judy Huang, M.D.

Swati Phatak, M.D.

Regional Medical Director, Baltimore North

Johns Hopkins Community Physicians

Service excellence and professionalism are at the forefront of everything Swati Phatak does. She always puts her patients first, going above and beyond to address their needs and concerns. Her patient satisfaction scores are consistently high, and her patients routinely send positive comments about her. One recently said, “I trust (Phatak’s) knowledge and insight. You can tell she cares, and (she) does not rush to ensure her patient(s) receive the attention and care they need and deserve.”

Another patient said, “Dr. Phatak is an excellent doctor. She really cares about her patients and explains everything so I can understand. She answers all my questions, and we discuss my health in detail. I feel very comfortable that she is my doctor. Dr. Phatak is very thorough, and (she) contacted another doctor for clarification about a comment in MyChart for me. She goes above and beyond to help her patients. She smiles, is very welcoming, personable, and puts you at ease. She is the best!”

Swati D Phatak, M.B.B.S.

Samuel Vanderhoek, M.D.

Director of Pediatric Perioperative Ambulatory Services, Pediatric Anesthesiologist, Assistant Professor of Anesthesiology and Critical Care Medicine

The Johns Hopkins Hospital

Samuel Vanderhoek specializes in providing anesthesia and care during and after surgery for infants, children and adolescents. In his role as director of pediatric perioperative ambulatory services, Dr. Vanderhoek developed the Johns Hopkins Health Care and Surgery Center at Green Spring Station in Lutherville, Maryland, to be a premiere surgery center for children in the region. He has worked collaboratively with each surgical division at the surgery center, and he helped spearhead development of a database with successful anesthetic techniques unique to certain pediatric populations.

In addition, he developed a preoperative screening program that enables practitioners from the anesthesia department to review every chart for each patient to help ensure appropriate work-up is conducted and avoid last minute cancellations. These protocols and guidelines help make anesthesia care safer and more efficient.

Dr. Vanderhoek is also a mentor and the coordinator for anesthesia residents moving through their pediatric anesthesia rotation. The love of his work permeates his practice as a clinical physician, researcher and teacher. His strong leadership skills set the framework and improve the quality of care provided to pediatric patients.

As one of his colleagues, certified registered nurse anesthetist Kaitlyn Vaughn wrote in nominating him for this award, “His service and professionalism have single-handedly led to better and safer care. Dr. Vanderhoek is incredibly bright and hardworking, but he is also one of the best colleagues I’ve ever had.”

Samuel Vanderhoek, M.D.

Karim Boudadi, M.D.

Medical Oncologist and Hematologist

Johns Hopkins Kimmel Cancer Center at Sibley Memorial Hospital

Karim Boudadi is generous, knowledgeable, kind, caring and professional, and he promotes collaboration and collegiality. He offers thoughtful input on cases and makes a point to value and respect every member of the head and neck cancer team. Dr. Boudadi takes wonderful care of all of his patients and his team. He does not shy away from hard conversations, and he appropriately includes team members to best support his patients. Dr. Boudadi's commitment to providing excellent care for the head and neck population is commendable. He understands the importance of a team approach with these complex cases, initiating the need for weekly multidisciplinary meetings.

Karim Boudadi, M.D.

Ornela Kutzke, M.D.

Physician, Plastic Surgery

Suburban Hospital

During the past year, plastic surgeon Ornela Kutzke has had a lasting impact on Suburban Hospital’s pediatric emergency department (ED). Her dedication to professionalism is evidenced by her interactions with patients and staff members. Dr. Kutzke is a primary contact for the ED staff, providing physicians with additional support, specific patient care recommendations and skills training in complex laceration repair. Kind, clear and experienced, Dr. Kutzke carefully adjusts her clinical practice to account for factors such as age and the type of plastics repair required. “Dr. Kutzke has often gone the extra step to provide excellent service to our pediatric patients and their families,” a colleague says. “Not only is her clinical skill phenomenal, but she has an amazing rapport with families and will go above and beyond to ensure they receive the best possible care.”

Ornela Dervishaj Kutzke, M.D.