Alumni Education Patient Care

Otolaryngology welcomes five new faculty members

The Department of Otolaryngology at Washington University is pleased to welcome five new faculty members, all alums. Whether it’s the Arch, the City Museum, toasted ravioli, or the high level of collaboration and exceptional research environment at WashU, we decided to find out what brought them back to St. Louis.

head shot of Rajan Dang, MD

Rajan Dang, MD

MD: Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, New York (2016)
Residency: Washington University in St. Louis (2021)

Dang is a comprehensive otolaryngologist seeing patients at Christian Hospital Northeast and John Cochran Veterans Affairs Medical Center. His clinical interests include sinus and nasal disease, salivary and endocrine disorders, and hearing and balance problems.

Rajan Dang, MD, takes a ride with wife Valerie and dog Milo.

“I love continuing to be surrounded and supported by such great mentors and teachers. I really feel like I can continue to grow here. Besides, had I left, I would really miss the great parks and food. Okay, mostly the food.”

head shot of Kate McClannahan

Kate McClannahan, PhD

AuD/PhD: University of Washington, Seattle (2017)
Fellowship: Psychological and brain sciences, Washington University in St. Louis (2019)

McClannahan studies age-related hearing loss and cognitive aging, and how they interact. The work of her Auditory Wellness Laboratory focuses on how psychological factors, such as personality and cognitive ability, contribute to self-reported hearing difficulties and hearing loss treatment decisions in older adults.

Kate McClannahan, PhD, with research colleagues Jonathan Peelle, PhD, and Mitch Sommers, PhD, on a recent Walk to End Alzheimer’s Disease.

“I had the opportunity to establish several collaborative projects across the WashU system, including work with the Knight Alzheimer Disease Research Center, and researchers in Otolaryngology, Radiology, Neurology, and Occupational Therapy. Some of these multidisciplinary projects, aimed at understanding the impact of hearing loss on healthy aging, are near completion, while others are still in the early stages of development. Having the opportunity to stay here to see this work completed and expanded, while also getting to move “home” to Audiology to help train the next generation of auditory clinicians and clinician scientists was the ideal situation for me!”

Lauren Roland, MD

MD: Penn State College of Medicine (2011)
Residency: Washington University in St. Louis (2018)
Fellowship: Rhinology and anterior skull base surgery, Emory University (2019)

Roland will be joining our rhinology division in January, 2022. Her clinical interests include septal deviation, acute and chronic rhinosinusitis, nasal polyps, nasal and sinus tumors, cerebrospinal fluid rhinorrhea, and anterior skull base tumors.

The Roland family: Jarod Roland, MD, and Lauren Roland, MD, with baby Samantha.

“The most compelling professional reason for me to return to WashU was the excellent opportunity as an academic surgeon-scientist. I am so excited to join the rhinology division and contribute to the clinical and translational research efforts. More than anything, we missed the people in St. Louis. My husband and I have such special mentors and friends at WashU and in St. Louis, it was easy to return.”

head shot of Matthew Shew, MD

Matthew Shew, MD

MD: University of Indiana School of Medicine (2014)
Residency: University of Kansas (2019)
|Fellowship: Neurotology, Washington University in St. Louis (2021)

Shew treats patients with chronic ear issues, hearing loss, and lateral skull base pathology. His research explores ways to apply innovative computational techniques using artificial intelligence and machine learning at the bedside, to help augment clinical decision making and improve clinical outcomes.

Matt Shew, MD, and Alexis hike the Grand Tetons.

“The amazing collaborative environment that WashU and our department foster was very attractive. Having so many accomplished physicians and researchers invested in your personal growth and career development is a quality that makes WashU very special.  Another special benefit of St. Louis for Alexis and me is the proximity to family and friends.  That’s something we always take for granted until you have to move far away, like I did for residency.  Being able to easily drive up for a weekend visit has been a real blessing.”

head shot of Paul Zolkind, MD

Paul Zolkind, MD

MD: SUNY Downstate College of Medicine, Brooklyn, NY (2013)
Residency: Washington University in St. Louis (2020)
Fellowship: Head and neck surgery and microvascular reconstruction, Stanford University (2021)

Zolkind is a head and neck specialist who treats benign and malignant head and neck tumors, salivary gland tumors and thyroid and parathyroid disorders. He specializes in transoral robotic surgery and microvascular reconstruction.

The Zolkind family hiking in Colorado this past summer: Paul Zolkind, MD, Grant, Mollie and Jack.

“I am thrilled to be returning to WashU after completion of a head and neck surgery fellowship at Stanford University. The research environment here is exceptional, and I am excited for the opportunity to be a part of a truly outstanding resident training program. I made great friendships in St. Louis, and that has made for an especially warm return to this community. My family and I are excited to go to Cardinals and Blues games again, eat at Union Loafers, and go for bike rides through Forest Park.”