The Division of General Internal Medicine (GIM) was established in 1977 by the Department of Medicine, under the leadership of Dr. Victor McKusick, the Chairman of the Department, and Dr. Philip Tumulty, the renowned clinician and model of excellence in general internal medicine. They established the Division to help maintain the tradition of the general internist, strengthen the connections that unified the Department of Medicine, provide a home for the academic general internist, and promote excellence in practice, teaching, and research relevant to general internal medicine.
1977 (Milestone): Early Years
The Division began as a small cohesive unit under Dr. Tumulty's leadership. Dr. Craig Smith, a former Assistant Chief of Service, who had advocated for creating the Division, was named Associate Director. Together, Drs. Tumulty and Smith sought to build a division of outstanding general internists, who would teach, care for patients, conduct clinical research, and serve as role models for students and housestaff.
1986-1996 (Milestone): The Levine Years
In 1986, the Department of Medicine’s new Chairman, Dr. John Stobo, appointed Dr. Levine, first as Interim Director of the Division, and then as permanent Director, following a national search. The Division was still small: the faculty, fellows, and staff were all located in close proximity (on the fourth and fifth floors of the Harvey Building, and the third floor of the Carnegie Building in Johns Hopkins Hospital) and would bump into the Division Director daily. Over the next 15 years, this small cadre of energetic, talented, and committed academicians would evolve into one of the largest and most prominent divisions at Johns Hopkins, renowned nationally for its scholarly work.
1996-2004 (Milestone): The Klag Years
After a dynamic decade, Dr. Levine stepped down as Division Director in 1996. The Department of Medicine’s then Chairman, Dr. Edward Benz, named Dr. Michael Klag to replace him. During Dr. Klag’s tenure, the Division doubled in size and spread itself across four different sites—a challenging obstacle to unity. Dr. Klag gave high priority to divisional unity and brought all elements—research, clinical, teaching—“back to the table together.” This was critical for the health and future of the Division. Equally important, Dr. Klag championed equity in visibility, promotability, and reward structures for all faculty and staff.
2005-2012 (Milestone): The Brancati Years
In 2005, Dr. Fred Brancati was named Director of the Division by Dr. Weisfeldt. He undertook a series of reforms and innovations designed to improve efficiency, productivity, cohesion, equity, and divisional reputation. Working with Dr. John Flynn and Dr. Dan Brotman, he fully united the research and clinical wings of the Division. Unification allowed a series of improvements including: greater access to clinical work for researchers; greater access to research resources for clinician-educators; greater fluidity in roles for junior faculty; more efficient and transparent management; and more leverage in negotiations with the Department and the School.
Due to declining health, Dr. Brancati resigned the Chief post in January 2013. Dr. Jeanne Clark assumed the post of Interim Director and appointed Dr. Brancati as Associate Director.