ORLANDO, Fla. ― William H. Theodore, M.D., begins his term as president of the American Epilepsy Society (AES) at the conclusion of the Society’s 2023 Annual Meeting, held in Orlando, Fla., Dec. 1-5, 2023. A medical and scientific society of 4,700 members, AES is dedicated to advancing research and education for preventing, treating, and curing epilepsy.
Dr. Theodore received a bachelor’s degree from Harvard College, Cambridge, Mass., and attended medical school at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York. Board-certified in internal medicine, neurology, and epilepsy medicine since 1979, Dr. Theodore has performed clinical and translational research, and provided care to patients with epilepsy at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Clinical Center, National Naval Medical Center, at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland. He also serves as professor of neurology at the F. Edward Hebert School of Medicine, Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences (USUHS).
He has vast experience in clinical and translational research in patients with drug-resistant epilepsy, including in a series of experimental drug trials, fMRI for language and memory mapping, and neurotransmitter receptor imaging. More recently, he has worked on PET imaging of inflammation and viral etiologies of epilepsy. Recognizing his pioneering research contributions and achievements in epilepsy, AES awarded him the prestigious Clinical Research Award.
Dr. Theodore has trained more than 50 fellows. He has served on the board of directors of the Foundation for Advanced Education in the Sciences, an organization that manages resources devoted to supporting research fellowships at the NIH, and on the board of directors of the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons Alumni Society.
Dr. Theodore’s service in the national and international epilepsy communities uniquely gives him a universal understanding of the progress made and of the necessity of continued research and education to achieve the goal of improving outcomes for persons with epilepsy. A deeply committed AES volunteer, he has served as treasurer, on the board of directors, and as chair and member of numerous councils and committees. He also has served as chair of the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) Epilepsy Section; on the International League Against Epilepsy (ILAE) North American Commission preparing the North American Report on Epilepsy; and on many committees with the AAN, American Neurological Association, and ILAE. A recipient of the international Ambassador for Epilepsy Award, he has served as a consultant to the World Health Organization, Pan American Health Organization and as a visiting professor at the University Teaching Hospital in Lusaka, Zambia.
Dr. Theodore has received continuous funding in the NIH intramural program; has published more than 250 peer-reviewed papers, several books, and has led and participated in practice parameters and advisory panels including a working group established at the request of police and protective agencies to advise on criteria for employment of officers with epilepsy.