James Fortenberry

Dr Fortenberry is the newly named Chief Physician Officer in Chief at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and Professor of Pediatric Critical Care at Emory University School of Medicine. He had served as Children’s first Pediatrician in Chief (PIC) since 2009. Jim returned to his native Atlanta in 1992 after completing a fellowship in pediatric critical care at Texas Children’s Hospital and Baylor College of Medicine, paediatrics residency at Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, medical school at Medical College of Georgia and undergraduate studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Dr Fortenberry previously served as Division Chief of Pediatric Critical Care, Director of Pediatric Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation (ECMO), PICU Medical Director, and Pediatric Critical Care Medicine Fellowship Director at Emory before assuming the role of PIC. Dr. Fortenberry has served in numerous system leadership roles at Children’s, including Director of the Department of Medicine, Medical Director of Clinical Research, and President of the Professional Staff at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

Dr Fortenberry has served in a variety of national leadership roles in the field, including Program Chair, with the American Academy of Pediatrics and on the Pediatric Executive Committee of the Society of Critical Care Medicine. He recently completed service as President of the Extracorporeal Life Support Organization, the world’s largest society devoted to pediatric and adult patients requiring this technology. Dr. Fortenberry served as Chair of the Critical Care Subboard of the American Board of Pediatrics, charged with overseeing certification for the subspecialty.

Dr Fortenberry has a long-standing involvement in medical research and clinical quality improvement, with a primary interest in extracorporeal approaches to treating lung injury and sepsis. He is devoted to improving outcomes in critically ill children, particularly children suffering from septic shock. With over 100 published manuscripts, editorials and book chapters, he recently published multi-centre network results on the use of plasma exchange in sepsis. Jim also remains an Associate Editor of Pediatric Critical Care Medicine.

In his role as Pediatrician in Chief, Dr Fortenberry led multiple service lines and enjoyed working across the system to oversee hospital-physician operations, encouraging physician collaboration in developing programs to improve outcomes in palliative care, diabetes, GI motility, and community paediatrics. Jim is also committed to ensuring the training of paediatricians and subspecialists to meet the future health needs of all children. In his new role, Jim has oversight of the physician organization of one of the largest pediatric healthcare systems and physician practice groups in the country.

With his wife, Janet, Jim is blessed with 3 children and 6 grandchildren.