Chattanooga, Tenn. — Drs. Molly Seal and Cauley Hayes, along with businessman and philanthropist Merv Pregulman, will be honored during “The Seventh Annual Baroness Erlanger Foundation Distinguished Physicians’ Brunch.”

The event, postponed from the original date of January 30 due to inclement weather, has been rescheduled for Saturday, March13. A fundraiser for The Baroness Erlanger Foundation, the brunch will begin with a reception at 10 a.m., at the Chattanoogan.

The three individuals were chosen to be honored for their unquestionable character, as well as their commitment and excellence in medicine to the region’s medical community.

Dr. Molly Seal
Dr. Seal, a board-certified ophthalmologist with Seal, Lawrence, and Nicola, received her medical degree from University of Texas, Southwestern, in Dallas. After completing her internship and residency at the UT College of Medicine Chattanooga (UTCOMC), based at Erlanger, she became an active member of the Erlanger medical staff in 1969.

Dr. Seal was the seventh physician to complete the ophthalmology residency program at UTCOMC and one of the first female physicians to practice in the area. The small number of female physicians practicing in the Chattanooga medical community in 1969, as compared to today, “is a light-and-dark situation,” Dr. Seal explains. “Now female physicians are numerous and totally accepted.”

A faculty member at UTCOMC since 1984, Dr. Seal currently serves as Assistant Clinical Professor of Ophthalmology. Through the years, Dr. Seal says that she has become more and more devoted to the teaching program at Erlanger. “Erlanger’s academic envirornment is stimulating, providing physicians with access to medical conferences and research programs,” she says.

Dr. Cauley Hayes
Dr. Hayes, who received his medical degree from Vanderbilt University, completed a surgical internship at Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center in New York City, a general surgery residency program at Vanderbilt, and additional studies in plastic, reconstructive, and hand surgery at New York University. Dr. Hayes has been a faculty member of UTCOMC, based at Erlanger, since 1976. He currently serves as Professor of Plastic Surgery and Director of Research.

An active member of Erlanger’s medical staff since 1970, Dr. Hayes has held numerous positions at Erlanger, ranging from Chief of Surgery to Chairman of the Trauma Committee. He holds membership in more than a dozen medical organizations, and he is board-certified in plastic surgery and surgery of the hand. Dr. Hayes is the founder of the Hayes Hand Center and Chattanooga Hand Rehabilitation Center and was director of The Plastic Surgery Group for nearly 40 years.

Erlanger, according to Dr. Hayes, has always been the preferred choice of the Hayes Hand Center and Plastic Surgery Group. “It was always important for us to be involved with a facility that would never turn anyone away, as well as a teaching hospital,” said Dr. Hayes.

Merv Pregulman
A former All-American football player for the University of Michigan Wolverines, Mr. Pregulman played in the NFL and is enshrined in the College Football Hall of Fame. Following his football career, he went on to a successful business career as the president and CEO of Siskin Steel & Supply Co.

Pregulman was also the chairman of the Siskin Memorial Foundation and played a leading role in building the Siskin Hospital for Physical Rehabilitation, one of the leading rehabiliation centers in the United States, and the development of Siskin Children’s Institute. Even after he retired, he remained active as the Foundation’s vice-chairman.

Mr. Pregulman has been particularly active in community service efforts directed at improving health care and has received awards from the Tennessee Medical Association and the Chattanooga/Hamilton County Medical Society. He is especially proud of the recent establishment of The Siskin Children’s Institute -T.C. Thompson Children’s Hospital Center for Developmental Behavioral Pediatrics. “Now children in our area with developmental disabilities can be fully diagnosed so they can be properly treated,” said Mr. Pregulman.

In 1997, Pregulman and his wife, Helen, were given Chattanooga’s top philanthropist honor at the 10th Annual National Philanthropy Day Luncheon and Award presentation, for their varied efforts since moving to Chattanooga in 1957.

Those interested in attending the 2010 Distinguished Physicians’ Brunch should call 423-778-6600 or 423-778-8705. The cost is $60 a person, with table sponsorship packages available. Reservations will be accepted through Tuesday, March 2.

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