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James Conners, MD

James J. Conners, MD, MS, is an assistant professor in the Department of Neurological Sciences at Rush University Medical Center. He is head of the section of cerebrovascular diseases. He received his medical degree at the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Chicago and a Master of Science degree in neuroscience from Loyola University, where his research focused on neuronal regeneration.

He then completed a medical internship, neurology residency and vascular neurology fellowship at Northwestern University. His interests include the acute treatment of stroke, cryptogenic strokes and stroke prevention.

Shawna M. Cutting, MD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Neurological Sciences at Rush University Medical Center. She received her medical degree from Vanderbilt University School of Medicine in Nashville, Tenn.

Her training consists of an internship in medicine, a residency in neurology and a fellowship in vascular neurology at Rush University Medical Center. She is a member of the American Academy of Neurology and the American Heart Association and is board-certified in neurology. Her clinical and research interests include acute stroke evaluation and management, motor recovery after stroke and stroke in the young.

Vivien Lee

Vivien Lee, MD, is an assistant professor in the Department of Neurological Sciences at Rush University Medical Center. She received her medical degree at Pennsylvania State University College of Medicine.

Her training consists of a medicine internship and neurology residency at Cleveland Clinic Foundation. She completed a stroke fellowship and neurocritical care fellowship at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn. See a list of her publications.

Sarah Song, MD, MPH, is an assistant professor and vascular neurology fellowship director in the Department of Neurological Sciences at Rush University Medical Center. She graduated with honors in English and Women’s Studies from Williams College, and received her medical degree and master of public health degree from the University of Illinois College of Medicine at Peoria. She served as chief resident of the Georgetown University neurology residency program, completed her fellowship in vascular neurology at UCLA, and was awarded a two-year postdoctoral fellowship in health services research from the UCLA American Heart Association/Pharmaceutical Roundtable-Spina Outcomes Research Center. Song is board-certified in neurology and vascular neurology. She is the recipient of a prestigious UCLA Resource Centers for Minority Aging Research pilot project grant through NIH/NIA, a UCLA Clinical and Translational Science Institution Catalyst Award, and the American Neurological Association Junior Academic Neurologist Scholarship. Her work has been published in Neurology and Stroke. Song’s academic research interests include race and stroke outcomes, emergency medical services and acute stroke, and stroke prevention interventions for minority communities. 

Laurel J. Smit, MD, is an instructor in the Department of Neurological Sciences at Rush University Medical Center. She received her medical degree from Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine of Medicine in Maywood, Ill., where she graduated with honors in bioethics and professionalism from the Neiswanger Institute for Bioethics.

Her training consists of a medicine internship at Swedish Covenant Hospital in Chicago and a neurology residency at the University of Chicago, during which time she won the Barry Arnason Research Symposium. She completed a stroke fellowship at Rush University Medical Center and was awarded a scholarship from the American Academy of Neurology Institute. In addition to her clinical practice, she is currently pursuing a master's degree in clinical research. She is a member of the American Heart Association and the American Academy of Neurology and is board-certified in neurology. She has participated in medical service trips to Guatemala and Bolivia and remains interested in global health issues. Her clinical interests include peripartum stroke, stroke in the young, intra-arterial therapy for stroke, post-stroke depression, and amyloid.

Demetrius Lopes, MD
Lorenzo F. Muñoz, MD
Michael Chen, MD
Roham Moftakhar, MD

Other professionals

  • Colleen Howell, BS (section manager)
  • Danielle Caporale, RVT (ultrasound technologist)
  • Elizabeth Diebolt (business analyst)
  • Gail Valadez (administrative assistant, stroke program)
  • Kristin Shtulberg (program coordinator)
  • Olga Borisovsky, PhD, PA-C (physician assistant)

The offices of the Section of Cerebrovascular Disease and Neurological Critical Care are located in Suite 1121 of the Rush Professional Office Building.





Contact Phone
(312) 563-2994
Contact E-mail
rush_stroke@rush.edu


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