The American Medical Association (AMA) today announced the election of Gerald E. Harmon, M.D., a family medicine physician from Pawleys Island, S.C., as the new president-elect of the nation's premier physician organization. Following a year-long term as president-elect, Dr. Harmon will assume the office of AMA president in June 2021.
"I am honored to be elected by my peers as president-elect of an organization dedicated to driving the future of medicine and improving health care for patients and physicians," said Dr. Harmon. "I look forward to continuing the AMA's work to shape America's health care system and lead transformation in health care delivery to ensure physicians can continue to provide exceptional care and comfort to our patients."
Dr. Harmon has been an AMA board member since 2013, serving as board chair from 2017 to 2018. Prior to his election to the AMA board, Dr. Harmon served on the Council on Medical Service, an influential committee of the AMA. Additionally, Dr. Harmon has held several leadership positions with the South Carolina Medical Association, including chairman of the board of trustees and president.
Practicing for more than 30 years as a family medicine specialist in his coastal South Carolina hometown of Georgetown, Dr. Harmon is currently a clinical professor at two South Carolina medical schools, as well as a member of the clinical faculty for the Tidelands Health Family Medicine residency program. Dr. Harmon also serves as an adviser to the board of trustees of a community health system and as vice president in a multispecialty physician practice. He also serves as medical director for several organizations including a non-profit hospice, and volunteers as medical supervisor for his local school district's 23 schools.
Dr. Harmon received his undergraduate degree in physics and mathematics from the University of South Carolina and has since been recognized as a Distinguished Alumnus. He received his medical degree from the Medical University of South Carolina and completed a residency training program in family medicine with the U.S. Air Force at Eglin AFB, Fla.
In a 35-year military career, Dr. Harmon served as chief surgeon for the National Guard Bureau and as assistant surgeon general for the U.S. Air Force before retiring as a Major General. His military decorations include the Distinguished Service Medal, the Legion of Merit, the Meritorious Service Medal, the Air Force Commendation Medal, and the Humanitarian Service Medal.
Dr. Harmon and his wife, Linda, enjoy spending time outdoors in their coastal hometown of Georgetown with their three married children and seven grandchildren.