American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

About Excelsior Surgical Society

The New Excelsior Surgical Society (2016): (Seated left to right in the front row): Dr. Norman Rich, Capt. Eric Elster, Dr. Jonathan Woodson, and Dr. Peggy Knudson


At the end of World War II, surgeons who had served during the conflict gathered at the Excelsior Hotel in Rome to discuss their experiences. This meeting was the first of what would be called the Excelsior Surgical Society. These meetings continued annually until the death of the last World War II member, Dr. Michael Debakey. Facilitated by the recently established partnership between the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and the Military Health System, a new generation of surgeons who have been deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan have resurrected the Excelsior Surgical Society and with the ratification of its bylaws and election of officers, it is now an official society within the ACS. 

The Society will offer a “home” for the military surgeon within the ACS, and will service as both an on-ramp to membership in the College as well as an “off ramp” for surgeons as they separate from the military and transition to civilian practice. In conjunction with the ACS Clinical Congress, the Excelsior Surgical Society holds an annual full-day meeting that is attended by active and retired military surgeons, residents, and students.

The Original Excelsior Surgical Society (1945)

News from the ESS

Excelsior Surgical Society Newsletter September 2018

Excelsior Surgical Society Newsletter September 2017

President's Message—January 2018


The following surgeons are the elected officers of the new Excelsior Surgical Society:

Stacy Shackelford President

Colonel Stacy Shackelford, MD, FACS, U.S. Air Force
Deputy Commander for Clinical Services (DCCS)/Chief of the Medical Staff (SGH) 455th EMDG, Craig Joint Theater Hospital Bagram Airfield, Afghanistan.

Robert LimVice President

Colonel Robert B. Lim, MD, FACS, U.S. Army
Chief, Metabolic and Advanced Laparoscopic Surgery, Tripler Army Medical Center.

Gordon WisbachSecretary

Captain Gordon Wisbach, MD, FACS, U.S. Navy
Vice Chairman, Department of General Surgery, Naval Medical Center San Diego

Kirby GrossTreasurer

Colonel Kirby R. Gross, MF, FACS
Director, Army Trauma Training Center, University of Miami.

Matthew MartinCouncilperson at Large, U.S. Army

Colonel Matthew Martin, MD, FACS, FASMBS
Trauma Medical Director, Madigan Army Medical Center

Romeo IgnacioCouncilperson at Large, U.S. Navy

Captain Romeo Ignacio, MD, FACS
Program Director, General Surgery Department, Naval Medical Center San Diego

Joe DuBoseCouncilperson at Large, U.S. Air Force

Colonel Joe DuBose, MD, FACS
Vascular and Trauma Surgeon, Travis Air Force Base

Jay A. JohannigmanCouncilperson at Large, Reserve/National Guard

Colonel Jay A. Johannigman, MD, FACS
Director of the Division of Trauma and Surgical Critical Care and Professor of Surgery at the University of Cincinnati

Want to learn more about becoming a member or holding office? Visit the ESS Membership and Officers page.