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2001 AOA Spring Lecture

James W. Curran, MD, MPH

James Curran Professor of Epidemiology and Dean
Rollins School of Public Health
Emory University

Emory/Atlanta Center for AIDS Research
Emory University
Rollins School of Public Health 

Dr. James Curran is a legendary figure in the history of the AIDS epidemic in North America.  Having obtained his MD at the University of Michigan in 1970,and his MPH at the Harvard University School of Public Health in 1974, was named Chief of the Operational Research Branch of the Venereal Disease Control Division of the CDC in 1978.  In this capacity he had first hand experience of the initial outbreaks of Kaposis' Sarcoma and PCP, and in 1982 was named Director of AIDS Activity at the CDC.  His subsequent positions at the CDC included Chief of the AIDS Branch of the Division of Viral Diseases in 1984, Director of the AIDS Program in 1985, Associate Director for HIV/AIDS in 1988, and Director of the Division of HIV/AIDS in 1989.  In 1995 he became Dean and Professor of Epidemiology at the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University.  Between 1991 and 1995, he served as Assistant Surgeon of the USPHS.  A fair overview of Dr. Curran's efforts at the onset of the epidemic can be found in the Randy Shilts' opus  "And the Band Played On..." (the book, not the movie).

Dr. Curran has served in numerous committees, is a member of the editorial boards of many journals and Web sites dedicated to HIV/AIDS, has received a number of honors and awards, and is a member of the Medicine Branch of the National Academy of Sciences. He is the author or co-author of 250 publications (largely on HIV/AIDS) including a series of breakthrough papers signaling the onset of the epidemic, published between 1982 and 1984. Dr. Curran visited MUSC as the AOA AIDS Symposium lecturer in the fall of 1998.

Those interested in a complete copy of Dr. Curran's CV please contact Dr. Virella at