News Releases

November 14, 2018
Media contact:  Leigh DeLozier, 404-778-3711,

Drs. O’Keefe and Khalifa are chosen to participate in Emory leadership programs

Two of Emory Eye Center’s faculty members, Ghazala A. Datoo O’Keefe, MD, and Yousuf M. Khalifa, MD, have been selected to participate in two of Emory’s leadership training programs.

O’Keefe was chosen to participate in the 2019 Emory Professional Leadership Enrichment and Development Program (EM-ProLEAD). The program is designed to enrich leadership skills, increase business knowledge, and develop strong partnerships across Emory Medicine. Guest speakers from across Emory and from other organizations will teach participants about leadership development, conflict negotiation, finance, accounting, marketing, decision making, and operations.

EM Pro-LEAD evolved from the merging of two successful and popular physician development programs: the Department of Pediatrics' PEP (The Executive Program) started by Dr. Lucky Jain in 2005, and the Emory Clinic's PLDP (Physician Leadership Development Program) started by Dr. Doug Morris in 2013.

“Over the three years I have been at the Emory Eye Center, I have worked to expand my network and create connections with faculty outside of the Department of Ophthalmology, whether it is through improving care for patients at Grady using a multidisciplinary approach, or working to improve and enhance the careers of women via Women in Ophthalmology at Emory (WOE) and the Emory Alliance for Women in Medicine and Science (EAWiMS),” O’Keefe says. “I am participating in the 2019 cohort of the Emory Pro-LEAD Program in order to further these collaborative efforts and to grow my leadership skills and understanding of how the business component of Emory Healthcare works. I hope to develop my institutional knowledge and gain more practical tools to use in my current and future roles here at Emory.”

Khalifa was selected as part of the new class of faculty and staff participating in Emory University’s Woodruff Leadership Academy (WLA) for 2019. Only 24 participants are chosen each year from across Emory’s Woodruff Health Sciences Center.

WLA combines a program of classroom sessions, off-site team projects, and weekend retreats to help participants develop, exercise, and strengthen individual leadership potential. Topics focus on all aspects of being a leader within an academic health center, including understanding the principles and responsibilities of leadership, honing strategic thinking and negotiation skills, and learning about finance, marketing, and more. The program began in 2003.

“The WLA is an outstanding opportunity to improve one’s leadership skills and learn from some of the best mentors in the world,” Khalifa says. “The interactions with other leaders in the system are extremely valuable for continued growth and development. I am honored to participate in this upcoming year’s program and look forward to improving my leadership skills and meeting leaders from across the WHSC.”

O’Keefe is a medical retina and uveitis specialist who joined the Emory Eye Center faculty in 2015. Her clinical work focuses on inflammatory and infectious diseases of the eyes, retinal degenerations, age-related macular degeneration (AMD), and diabetic retinopathy.

Khalifa came to the Emory Eye Center in 2014. He serves as chief of service of ophthalmology at Grady Memorial Hospital and is also part of the cornea and refractive surgery team at Emory Eye Center. His primary clinical interests include penetrating keratoplasty, endothelial keratoplasty, cataract surgery, and corneal infectious disease.


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