American University of Beirut

Professor of Clinical Emergency Medicine Amin Kazzi earns Leader of the Year 2021 international award


The World Academic Council of Em​ergency Medicine (WACEM), the leading global specialty organization in academic emergency medicine today, has recognized Dr. Amin Antoine Nabih Kazzi, professor of clinical emergency medicine at the American University of Beirut (AUB), with their Leader of the Year 2021 international leadership award.

The event, which took place on December 17-20, 2021 in Mumbai, India, comes as a step forward to honor Dr. Kazzi for his exceptional, sustained, and profound leadership contribution to the international development of emergency medicine (EM) across the world as well as in Lebanon.

A pioneer and a leader in the field of emergency medicine, Dr. Kazzi is president of the Lebanese Society of Emergency Medicine (LSEM), former president of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine (AAEM) (2004-06), and of the California chapter of AAEM (2001-03). He is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions, and is internationally known for founding the international Mediterranean Emergency Medicine Congress (MEMC) in 2001.  Now on its 12th congress, MEMC has become the leading international emergency medicine congress, bridging the development of emergency medicine between the Americas and Europe, and between the Anglo-American and Franco-German models of emergency medicine. In recognition of his international impact, in 2015, the American Academy of Emergency Medicine named their international leadership award the Amin Kazzi AAEM International Leadership Award

On this achievement, Raja N. Khuri Dean of the Faculty of Medicine and Vice President for Medical Affairs Raymond Sawaya said, “Dr. Amin Kazzi has been a noted leader in the field of emergency medicine, and this latest recognition builds on a series of firsts for him. Most notably, he pioneered the development of emergency medicine at AUB, which in turn helped develop the specialty in the Middle East. He also established the first EM residency program in Lebanon that went on to quickly lead in obtaining US accreditation. Not surprisingly, Dr. Kazzi has received numerous prestigious American as well as international awards; however, this particular award is notable in the sense that it is truly global in reach and in significance.”

At the national level, Dr. Kazzi established the first academic Department of Emergency Medicine in Lebanon at the AUB Medical Center. The department quickly became a prime national and international center of excellence through attracting specialists from across the world and providing exceptional emergency medical care, education, research, and service to the Lebanese, Mediterranean, and international community. Dr. Kazzi’s national impact has also extended into the regulatory sphere where, as president for the Lebanese Society for Emergency Medicine, he spearheaded the changes required to secure reimbursement of professional fees for EM specialists in parity with their peers. 

Regionally, Dr. Kazzi founded the Mediterranean Chapter of AAEM (MAEM). He also co-founded and assumed the role of chief editor for The Mediterranean Journal of Emergency Medicine and Acute Care (MedJEM), a new open access peer-reviewed journal that aims to advance EM research in countries where the field remains in early or middle phase of development. In recognition of his academic contributions to the region, Dr. Kazzi was the first EM specialist to be promoted to the rank of full professor of EM in the MENA region. 

Over two decades, Dr. Kazzi received the David K. Wagner Leadership Recognition Award, the AAEM Special Leadership Recognition Award, the AAEM International Emergency Medicine Leadership Award, the AAEM-EuSEM Founders’ Award, the Robert McNamara Award, and the AAEM Resident Section Leadership Award. In 2013, Dr. Kazzi was the third recipient to receive the Master of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine (MAAEM) distinction, which is awarded to those who embody the MAAEM ideals of longstanding extraordinary service, education, volunteerism, and advocacy.

This well-deserved recognition cements the role of the American University of Beirut and its medical center in continuing to be home to top notch pioneers in the field of medicine and aligns with their commitment to provide Lebanon and the region with the highest standards of patient care.

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