Jacqueline Barnett Named Director of Duke Physician Assistant Program

Wednesday, April 18, 2018
Jacqueline S. Barnett, DHSc, MSHS, PA-C
Jacqueline S. Barnett, DHSc, MSHS, PA-C

Jacqueline S. Barnett, DHSc, MSHS, PA-C, associate professor of community and family medicine, has been named program director, Duke Physician Assistant Program, effective June 1, 2018. Barnett has served as associate program director since late 2015.

The decision was made after a national search conducted by an internal committee led by Kenyon Railey, M.D., assistant professor of community and family medicine. In the interim, Patricia McKelvey Dieter, MPA, PA-C, professor of community and family medicine and PA division chief, has served as program director.

In a message to the department, Dieter and Chair Anthony Viera, M.D., MPH, professor of community and family medicine, said of Barnett: "Dr. Barnett will be our first African-American PA program director, making history in a program that graduated the country’s first African-American PAs. She is a passionate advocate for diversity, student well-being and leadership, and we welcome the strengths she brings to her new position and look forward to her leadership."

Barnett began her professional career in speech pathology and audiology, then graduated from the George Washington University PA Program in 1994. She earned her MSHS from George Washington in 2001 and her DHSc from A.T. Still University in 2013, concentrating on organizational behavior and leadership.

A National Health Service Corps Scholar, her clinical experience includes practice in an Air Force clinic, the Federal Bureau of Prisons, family medicine, and the Department of Infectious Diseases at Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. She also worked as a medico legal investigator with the DC Medical Examiner. She began teaching full-time in PA programs 18 years ago, initially at University of Maryland Eastern Shore and then at George Washington University. From 2002 to 2010 she was director of the clinical curriculum at GWU, and also served as director of didactic curriculum from 2001 to 2002 and adviser to the student society from 2010-2015. 

Professionally, Barnett has served as American Academy of Physician Assistants Liaison to the National Medical Association and as a reviewer for the Journal of Physician Assistant Education. Currently, she is a member of the financial council of Physician Assistant Education Association and a site visitor for the Accreditation Review Commission on Education for the Physician Assistant. She is also primary investigator of the Health Resources and Services Administration-funded project “Transforming Health Care through Enhanced Clinical Team Training.” 

In 2017, Barnett was the first PA to complete the Duke University School of Medicine’s Academic Leadership, Innovation, and Collaborative Engagement (ALICE) program for mid-career women faculty.

The Duke Physician Assistant Program is the birthplace of the physician assistant profession and is consistently ranked as the top PA program in the country by U.S. News & World Report.