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Become a member and receive career-enhancing benefits

Our top priority is providing value to members. Your Member Services team is here to ensure you maximize your ACS member benefits, participate in College activities, and engage with your ACS colleagues. It's all here.

Become a Member
Become a member and receive career-enhancing benefits

Our top priority is providing value to members. Your Member Services team is here to ensure you maximize your ACS member benefits, participate in College activities, and engage with your ACS colleagues. It's all here.

Membership Benefits

ACS Surgeons as Leaders: From Operating Room to Boardroom

March 24–27, 2024 | Durham, NC

ACS Surgeons as Leaders: From Operating Room to Boardroom

Today’s medical environment—both in the academic and private practice worlds—is challenging, complex, and unpredictable.

The need for leadership has never been greater, and the demands on leaders are ever escalating. The purpose of this course is to provide surgeons with an understanding of leadership at all levels of an organization and to provide them with the skills that are essential for effective leadership. Difficult leadership issues, such as navigating the operational and human aspects of change, cultivating commitment to a shared vision and goals, building teams, and developing strategies for leading up, down, and across the institutional environment, will be addressed.

In addition to introducing new leadership skills, the course faculty will assist participants in recognizing and developing the attributes of leadership they already possess. The three-day course will include lectures, interactive forums with senior surgical leaders and panel discussions, as well as role-playing and case-based instructional strategies. Leadership skills, as differentiated from management skills, will be the focus of the course.


Whether in the operating room or in the boardroom, surgeons in academic medical centers as well as community hospitals must be able to:

  • Exhibit the attributes of a leader to effectively resolve leadership challenges
  • Use consensus development and vision to set, align, and achieve goals
  • Build and maintain effective teams
  • Change culture, resolve conflict, and balance demands within the larger environment
  • Lead oneself with insight regarding personal perspectives that impact effectiveness
  • Utilize innovative approaches to address evolving concerns during organizational change
  • Translate the principles of leadership into action

Join senior surgical leaders in a dynamic 3-day course for surgeons who aspire to meet the challenges of exemplary leadership across all settings.

Intended Participants

The course is designed for surgeons who currently serve in leadership positions, or aspire to such positions, and who seek to enhance their leadership skills across a wide variety of settings, from operating room to boardroom. Surgeons in community practice and academic practice who want to advance their skills in leading people, groups, and organizations will find the course beneficial. The emphasis will be on leadership; management of such entities and the skills generally associated with management will not be addressed in the course.

The course is limited to 64 participants. ACS Members will receive priority consideration. All participants are expected to attend the entire course and remain until the conclusion of the course.

Course Content

Leadership Challenges

Effective surgical leadership today requires different competencies than in the past. A focus will be placed on attributes that are important to effective leadership and that will assist the participants in identifying and enhancing the leadership skills they already possess.

Leadership challenges may be effectively resolved by:

  • Using different leadership styles in different settings
  • Applying concepts of emotional intelligence
  • Confronting disruptive behavior and microaggressions
  • Recruiting, mentoring, and delegating
  • Recognizing and avoiding burnout

Leading and Sustaining Change

Leaders must be skilled in effecting and sustaining change in individuals and organizations.

Change may be effectively supported by:

  • Providing a vision and rationale
  • Understanding adaptive leadership challenges
  • Motivating and stimulating ongoing change
  • Sustaining change through others
  • Developing a quality and safety program

Building and Maintaining Team Effectiveness
Theoretical and practical steps of team development will be explored, including those used in assembling teams, charging teams, and supporting team function within health care organizations.

Team effectiveness can be enhanced by:

  • Using disparate personalities and ideas to develop solutions
  • Generating enthusiasm and positive interpersonal behaviors
  • Evaluating performance and making personnel changes
  • Aligning disparate team members 

Leading Oneself
Current courses on leadership are largely theoretical and provide limited access to being a leader, much as a surgical atlas does not fully impart what is required to be a surgeon.

A focus on leadership as it is lived and experienced may assist both established and aspiring leaders in:

  • Thinking and acting strategically
  • Leading oneself and other surgeons
  • Leading beyond surgery
  • Leading during a crisis 

Art and Principles of Leadership
Leaders must be able to address various leadership situations and translate the principles of leadership into action. This course will use case-based scenarios to launch discussions that demonstrate the importance of flexibility and adaptability for effective leadership.

Course participants will benefit from the shared insights and experiences among attendees as they are:

  • Evaluating leadership opportunities
  • Succeeding in new leadership positions
  • Leading in a community setting
  • Developing collaborative academic medical center and community relationships
  • Leading in the redesign of health care
  • Recognizing and addressing leadership derailers
  • Leading up to the next level
Course Fee

ACS Members: $5,250
Nonmembers: $5,925

Course participants must submit full payment upon notification of acceptance in order to reserve their seat in the course. Additional details will be enclosed with the notification letters. Full payment of the course fee will be due upon acceptance into the course. Personal or Institutional credit cards will be accepted. Please do not include payment information when submitting the application.


If you have questions about this course, please send an email to SurgeonsAsLeaders@facs.org.  

ACS Course Staff: 

  • Natalie Loper, Administrator
  • Daniel Cox, Administrator
  • Michelle McNeilly, Senior Manager


The application period is now open for the 2024 ACS Surgeons as Leaders Course. 

Apply Here

The application will be available until Friday, December 15, 2023. Please note, this course has limited seating for a maximum of 64 participants. All applications will be reviewed and applicants will be notified of a decision in January, 2024. If you have any questions or concerns about the application, please email SurgeonsAsLeaders@facs.org.

Continuing Medical Education Credit Information

The American College of Surgeons is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™
The American College of Surgeons designates this live activity for a maximum of 25.50 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Course Location & Accommodations

The 2024 Surgeons as Leaders Course will be held at the Washington Duke Inn (WDI) in Durham, North Carolina. There will be an ACS hotel block reserved closer to the date for accepted attendees.


Staff Consultants

  • Ajit K. Sachdeva, MD, FACS, FRCSC, FSACME, MAMSE
    Director, ACS Division of Education
  • Patrice Gabler Blair, DrPH, MPH
    Associate Director, ACS Division of Education