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PA School founding director to leave post to enter the mission field

Assistant Professor Matt Steidl appointed as interim during search for new director.

Janel Shoun-Smith | 615.966.7078  | 

Stephen Heffington talking with students

Dr. Stephen Heffington (’94), founding director of the School of Physician Assistant Studies, has resigned effective Sept. 15, to work in the mission field serving the Native American tribes in Arizona who have been devastated during the Covid-19 pandemic while also facing health care and economic disparities.
He will also work with a local church seeking to minister to the indigenous people on the reservation. 
A search process for identifying and selecting a new program director will commence immediately, but in the interim, Assistant Professor Matt Steidl (’00) will serve as interim program director for the school.

Stephen Heffington speaking

Heffington joined the Lipscomb faculty in 2016. “His extensive background and senior level experience as a clinician and educator immediately enabled the PA program to have phenomenal student outcomes, including the 100% PANCE pass rate for the inaugural cohort,” said Quincy Byrdsong, vice provost of health affairs. “During his tenure, his love for Lipscomb and his passion for excellence in health sciences education was reflected in his tireless commitment not only to the PA program but for the vision of Lipscomb Health.  He leaves an exceptionally talented team in place and the PA program in an excellent position for continued growth.”
Steidl worked as a software engineer for Lockheed Martin on the MLRS and F-35 Lightning II programs for eight years. He went to PA school at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas where he earned a Master in Physician Assistant Studies. He then completed the Garry Weber APP Urology Fellowship. 
Steidl worked full-time as a physician assistant in the specialty of urology for seven years before returning to Lipscomb in 2017 to join the PA program faculty.