This is the first blog post in our new series titled Taking the Lead: An Inside Look at Eskenazi Health's Leadership. Different leaders throughout Eskenazi Health will be featured, giving an inside look at their work roles, backgrounds, passions and even hobbies. We hope you enjoy learning about some of the exceptional leaders Eskenazi Health is proud to employ.

Since September 2006, Dr. Brian Mullis has been a critical part of the Eskenazi Health family. He is currently the chief of Orthopaedic Trauma for the Smith Level I Shock Trauma Center at Eskenazi Health, and about a year and a half ago, Dr. Mullis took over as the program director of the orthopaedic residency program for the Indiana University (IU) School of Medicine. Additionally, he serves as a professor of orthopaedic surgery for the IU School of Medicine.

Let’s get to know Dr. Mullis a little better. Dr. Mullis grew up in Asheville, North Carolina. He earned his bachelor’s degree and completed medical school at the University of North Carolina (UNC) before fulfilling a trauma fellowship in Tampa Bay, Florida in 2005. While he met his future wife, Lani, at UNC, both of them were at different stages of their trainings. Due to the fact Lani grew up and had family in Fort Wayne, Indiana, she wanted to move back to Indiana and finish her training at IU. Dr. Mullis concluded that the “IU program was perfect for both of us.”

Eventually, Dr. Mullis began working at Eskenazi Health and has been here ever since. His wife also works at Eskenazi Health as an anesthesiologist. Throughout his tenure, Dr. Mullis has mostly enjoyed the challenge of treating and working with high-risk patients with difficult injuries and making a difference in their lives.

Dr. Mullis’ line of work primarily consists of caring for patients who have suffered a wide range of serious injuries related to motorcycle accidents, falls from heights greater than 10 feet, high-speed motor vehicle collisions as well as high- and low-risk trauma. So why did he choose to work in trauma? He said the biggest factor was the instant gratification he gets from helping and seeing his mostly young and highly functioning patients get back to what they were doing before their traumatic event.

And Dr. Mullis knows plenty about traumatic events. From 2001 to 2015, he served in the Navy Reserve and finished as a Navy commander. As a combat veteran, he spent a year in Afghanistan with Regular and Special Forces. Yet he is careful to mention that he “was not a SEAL.” He felt that his military experience helped him become a better surgeon because of all the terrible injuries he witnessed.

Dr. Mullis enjoys his work at Eskenazi Health because he believes that it offers a very collegial atmosphere. He really values his work family and loves having great relationships with other providers and team members. Aside from direct patient care, he feels that his greatest contribution to Eskenazi Health has been to help support this culture of collegiality and family atmosphere. He’s passionate about his work and enjoys using his experience to help provide a better quality of care.

Outside of work, Dr. Mullis enjoys spending time with his wife, three kids and his dog, Tully. He has even been known to play Pokémon Go with them and adds, “It’s a great way I can spend time with my kids and actually get them away from the Xbox.” 

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