Awards and Recognition

Dean’s Awards for General Medicine Faculty


  • Michele Heisler, MD, MPA, received the Health Services Research Award, which recognizes outstanding contributions to the Medical School in health services research.


Department of Internal Medicine Annual Awards for General Medicine Faculty

Steven Gradwohl "Art of Primary Care" Award

Steven Gradwohl, MD
Steven Gradwohl, MD

Dr. Steven Gradwohl was a clinical assistant professor of internal medicine from 1994 - 2013. Known as a "physician's physician", he practiced general internal medicine at the Briarwood Medical Group and was devoted to high-quality patient care and training future physicians. A graduate of Carleton College and the University of Chicago's Pritzker School of Medicine, Dr. Gradwohl had been named by his peers as one of the Best Doctors in America several times. He was a U.S. Army veteran, having served on active duty while in medical residency at the Letterman Army Medical Center in San Francisco, and in medical leadership posts at Fort Lee in Virginia and the Presidio in San Francisco. He came to Michigan in 1994, attracted by the opportunity to take part in medical education in an outpatient setting.

"Being a primary care physician has been unbelievably rewarding for me. There are many other fields with higher pay, and perhaps shorter hours, but none that rivals being a patient's primary health care provider." - Dr. Steven Gradwohl, 2012

Gradwohl Art of Primary Care Award Recipients

2017 - Julie Morelock, MD
Dr. Julie Morelock earned her undergraduate degree from Northwestern and her Medical Degree here at the University of Michigan. Julie completed residency training at the University of Michigan and joined the faculty in 2001. She initially practiced at Livonia and Canton Health Centers prior to moving to the Saline Health Center in 2004. Julie has longstanding dedication to resident education. She served on the institutional Primary Care Task Force. She is an active member of the Clinical Excellence Society, serving as Councilor and is also a member of the Mentorship Committee. “Julie’s patients continually rave about her medical knowledge, her ability to navigate through the University of Michigan with referrals and coordination of care, and her caring personality.”

2016 - Thomas O'Connor, MD
Dr. Thomas O'Connor earned his MD, completed his internship and residency, and served as Chief Medical Resident at the University of Michigan. Since joining the faculty in the Department of Internal Medicine in 1985, Dr. O’Connor has had a significant impact on our primary care delivery and educational programs, distinguishing himself as an educator, clinician, and administrator. He served as the Medical Director of the Briarwood Medical Group practice from 1991 through 2015 and as the Associate Division Chief for Ambulatory Care until recently accepting an opportunity to teach medical students in the new M-Home teaching curriculum. As a practicing physician, Dr. O’Connor has managed a large clinical practice of patients who are extremely dedicated to him as their doctor.

2015 - Elisa Ostafin, MD
Dr. Elisa Ostafin was recognized for her strong commitment to the art and practice of primary care. A member of the University faculty since 1985, Dr. Ostafin currently serves as the Medical Director of the West Ann Arbor Health Center and as a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Internal Medicine. Dr. Ostafin has taught M1 through M4 medical students, and is currently a Clinical Educator for the Clinical Foundations of Medicine Sequence for the M1 and M2 students. She also supervises M3 students and internal medicine residents in continuity clinics. Dr. Ostafin has been named to the Hour Detroit Top Docs list as well as the Best Doctors in America list. Beyond her role as a Medical Director, Dr. Ostafin serves on the Michigan Primary Care Transformation Steering Committee and filled Dr. Gradwohl’s empty seat on the Executive Committee for Clinical Affairs after his passing.

3rd Annual Steven Gradwohl Art of Primary Care Clinical Innovations Event

U-M 3rd Annual Steven Gradwohl Art of Primary Care Clinical Innovations Event

On Monday, October 2nd, primary care faculty along with clinical and administrative team representatives gathered for the 3rd Annual Gradwohl Art of Primary Care Clinical Innovations event. This event provided an excellent opportunity to dialogue and share perspective on primary care clinical practice. Physician presenters reviewed a number of topics, including Physician Wellness, Medical Education, and Clinic Workflow and Efficiency.

Dr. Robert Ernst, Senior Associate Division Chief for Ambulatory Care and Assistant Chair for Primary Care hosted the evening. This event highlights the joint commitment to Primary Care by both the Department of Internal Medicine and the Division of General Medicine, and was made possible by the Gradwohl “Art of Primary Care” Award and Lectureship Endowment Fund. As we progress toward our institutional strategic goals, it remains critically important to provide opportunities like this to bring together colleagues from across the Division and the Department in an effort to connect and to share both ideas and best practices that will help us better transform the clinical practice of primary care. In doing so, we will also help our faculty achieve and demonstrate excellence here at the University of Michigan.