Past Department Chairs

E. Harvey Estes., Jr., MD

Chair, 1966-1985

In 1966, E. Harvey Estes, Jr. MD, then a Duke cardiologist, was recruited from the Department of Medicine, to lead the newly created Department of Community Health Sciences. He was a tenured professor of medicine and recognized as an outstanding cardiologist and electrocardiographer. He had been actively involved in statewide medical programs and organizations throughout the 1950s and ‘60s. Dr. Estes was president of the North Carolina Heart Association in 1965, was active in the North Carolina Medical Society, and elected president of the Durham-Orange County Medical Society in 1970 and the North Carolina Medical Society in 1977.

During his tenure as chair, Estes oversaw the growth of the department to include student health, occupational health, the Physician Assistant Program, information sciences, biostatistics, the Duke Diet and Fitness Program, and the Duke-Watts Family Medicine Residency Program. He resigned as chair in 1985 in response to a medical center decision to close the successful community hospital-based family medicine residency, perceived by other clinical chairs as a threat to Duke Hospital-based clinics. He continued as a clinical faculty member until 1990, when he retired to head a new N.C. Medical Society program to recruit and retain practitioners in underserved areas of North Carolina.

Read Dr. Estes' Bio on the PA History Society Website

George R. Parkerson, Jr., MD

Chair, 1985-1994

George R. Parkerson, Jr., MD, was appointed chair of the Department of Community and Family Medicine in 1985 after the resignation of E. Harvey Estes, Jr., MD, in 1985. Parkerson led the department through a time when the clinical practice and family medicine training program were threatened. Parkerson is credited with saving the department and strengthening its relationship with Duke University Medical Center and other clinical departments.

During his tenure as chair, Parkerson was instrumental in obtaining Duke University Hospital admission privileges for family doctors and moving the Duke Family Medicine Center from Durham Regional Hospital to the Duke campus in 1989.

Read Dr. Parkerson's Faculty Profile

J. Lloyd Michener, MD

Chair, 1995-2017

J. Lloyd Michener, MD, was named chair of the Department of Community and Family Medicine in 1995 after the resignation of George R. Parkerson, Jr., MD. At the time, Michener was division chief and medical director of family medicine, and was asked by then-Chancellor of Health Affairs Ralph Snyderman, MD, to become chair.

During his tenure as chair of the department, Michener oversaw a family medicine residency curriculum redesign focused on population health, work with outside foundations that contributed to many community health and team-based training initiatives, and a focus on national and international collaboration.

Read Dr. Michener's Faculty Profile