Sherard A. Tatum, MD, a New York-based facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon, has assumed the role of president at the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery (AAFPRS). His term, from 2023 to 2024, officially began during the AAFPRS Annual Business Meeting in Las Vegas. The AAFPRS, the world’s largest association for facial plastic surgery, focuses on educating professionals and the public about the specialty’s rigorous training, ethical standards, artistic excellence, humanitarian service, and commitment to improving lives.

“It is a true privilege to have been elected to serve as AAFPRS president this year,” says Tatum. “My goals include carrying on the legacy of providing medical professionals with the high-quality education this organization is known for; collaborating with our global members to spotlight the innovation in our field; and, of course, advancing our many humanitarian efforts. 

He adds, “My recent experience in Ukraine with our AAFPRS Foundation Face to Face program has underscored the importance of using our platform to help address the human suffering in this world with kindness and generosity—and I look forward to working with our exceptional members to do exactly that. This is going to be a big year for the AAFPRS.”

Tatum earned his medical degree from the University of South Florida and completed postgraduate training in general surgery and otolaryngology at Eastern Virginia Medical School; craniomaxillofacial surgery at University of Eppendorf, Hamburg, Germany; and facial plastic and reconstructive surgery at University of California-Davis Medical Center. 

For the last 30 years, he has been a professor of otolaryngology and pediatrics at SUNY Upstate-Syracuse—and he is also in key leadership roles at his institution, including the director of facial plastic and reconstructive surgery; medical director of the Cleft and Craniofacial Center; co-director of the craniomaxillofacial surgery fellowship; and a scientific reviewer for the Institutional Review Board. 

Tatum has served on numerous committees, including the Cancer and Trauma Committees and the Medical Student Advisor Program, and has sat on the boards of the AAFPRS, the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, JAMA Facial Plastic Surgery, Current Opinion in Otolaryngology, and Facial Plastic Surgery Clinics. He has given over 250 presentations, many international, and co-authored and edited over 200 publications. 

“Dr. Tatum brings tremendous amounts of clinical, surgical, and leadership expertise within our diverse specialty, which will be of enormous value to our board and our membership as we look to further advance the vital mission of the AAFPRS,” adds AAFPRS Executive Vice President and CEO Steve Jurich. “He is a firm believer that our diversity and passion do make us stronger together—and through his innate, respectful, and genuine approach to engaging others, Dr. Tatum will absolutely be instrumental in leading the AAFPRS toward enhanced collaborations within our academy, and throughout our specialty and organized medicine.”