JABSOM Grads Excel in Texas

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Dr. Steven Petak with Chris Tanabe and ʻohana

While half of the physicians in Hawaiʻi either trained or teach at the John A. Burns School of Medicine, others are practicing the quality care they learned here all over the world.

For example, 3800 miles away from Hawaiʻi, in Houston, Texas, Dr. Chris Tanabe (2020) was honored with a prestigious award during his graduation from the Houston Methodist Internal Medicine Residency Program.

Dr. Tanabe was acknowledged as the first recipient of the Dr. Steven Petak and Dr. Karen Werner-Petak Medical Humanitarian Award. This prestigious award is granted to individuals who have demonstrated remarkable contributions and embodied the principles of Humility, Advocacy, Resilience, and Philanthropy.

The honor was even more special because Chris was training under fellow JABSOM grad and Internal Medicine Residency Program Director at Houston Methodist, Dr. Melina Awar (2007).

Dr. Awar and Dr. Tanabe are JABSOM grads excelling in Texas.

“Both Dr. Tanabe and Dr. Awar are shining examples of the outstanding quality and positive impact of JABSOM graduates,” said JABSOM Alumni Association president Richard Kasuya (class of 1989). “We couldn’t be prouder of both of them, and we are so grateful for the way they are representing our medical school.”

Under Dr. Awar’s thoughtful mentorship, Dr. Tanabe has reminded us that medicine is not just a profession but a calling to serve humanity.

Dr. Tanabe’s parents and JABSOM alums, Bryan and Marianne (Ginoza) Tanabe, attended the ceremony to witness their son receiving this award.