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MU School of Medicine names ophthalmology department chairman

March 24, 2019 GMT

Following a national search, the Marshall University Joan C. Edwards School of Medicine has selected Dr. James W. Gigantelli as professor and chairman of its Department of Ophthalmology.

Gigantelli comes to Marshall from the University of Nebraska College of Medicine. While at Nebraska, he served as professor, assistant dean of governmental affairs and interim chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, as well as director of the Stanley M. Truhlsen Eye Institute.

Throughout his 28-year professional career, Gigantelli has authored more than 50 publications and research abstracts in clinical care and lectured on topics ranging from ocular adnexal disease to medical leadership. He has been acknowledged with local and national awards for excellence in clinical care and teaching. His clinical practice focuses on improved diagnostic accuracy of orbital tumors and innovative therapies for orbital inflammatory diseases. Since 2007, he has been regularly listed as a member of Best Doctors and Castle Connolly’s Top Doctors in America.


As chairman, Gigantelli will be responsible for the administrative functions of the clinical, academic and research operations of the department. His goals include developing a graduate medical education program in ophthalmology; and expanding the department in southern West Virginia, eastern Kentucky and southern Ohio through the addition of comprehensive and sub-specialty clinical providers and academic researchers to the department’s faculty base.

The Department of Ophthalmology currently includes five ophthalmologists and operates two locations in Charleston and Huntington.

Gigantelli earned his medical degree from Vanderbilt University in Nashville, Tennessee, before completing his residency in ophthalmology at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston, Texas, and fellowship training in Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Orbital Disease and Ophthalmic Oncology at the Duke University Eye Center in Durham, North Carolina.

Gigantelli and his wife, Lori, have four children.

He becomes the third chairman of the Department of Ophthalmology at Marshall, replacing Dr. R. Mark Hatfield, who is retiring from the school after five years as administrative chairman.