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You are here: Home Candidates for the 2022 AAGL Board of Directors

Candidates for the 2022 AAGL Board of Directors

AAGL is pleased to announce the slate of candidates for the 2022 Board of Directors. Voting is open from October 5, 2021, to November 3, 2021. We applaud the Nominating Committee for putting forth such an impressive slate of board members during a time when our industry continues to play a critical role in helping the world recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.  Good luck and don’t forget to cast your vote by November 3rd!

Note:  AAGL full members in good standing will receive a link via email from Simply Voting. Please click the link in your email to cast your vote.

Candidate for Secretary-Treasurer Candidate for Director from the General Membership Candidate for Director from Pacific Rim / India / Asia Candidate for Director from Mexico / Central & South America
William Burke, MD Samar Nahas, MD Amani Harris, MD Agnaldo Lopes, MD
Michel Canis, MD Nash Moawad, MD Prakash Trivedi, MD Anibal Scarella, MD
Kevin Stepp, MD


Dr. William “Billy” Burke
Candidate for Secretary-Treasurer

It is an honor and a privilege to be considered as a possible candidate for Secretary-Treasurer Board Member on the AAGL Board of Directors. I have had a passion for minimally invasive surgery since I first helped with a laparoscopic hysterectomy as a resident in 1997.  I have been active in both AAGL and the Society of Gynecologic Oncology for over a decade.  I was the Chair of the Clinical Practice Committee of the SGO, I have served as an AAGL board member, I served on the Program Committee for 43rd AAGL Global Congress and on the Program Committee for the 2017 SGO Annual Meeting, and I have been faculty for numerous national and international MIS courses.  

We are fortunate to practice in a world in which MIS has become the preferred surgical approach for patients with both benign and malignant conditions.  We are also fortunate to be part of an AAGL that is comprised of surgeons from all across the world.   However, despite the great success our organization has had in pioneering gynecologic care, AAGL will continue to face great challenges in continuing to provide technologically innovative and state of the art surgical care for our patients in the coming years.  The rapidly changing healthcare landscape provides our society with a host of obstacles to overcome. Though we are an international society, we need to continue to foster a greater partnership with the gynecologic surgical societies throughout the world.  There needs to greater collaboration with our colleagues on initiating and completing surgical trials, creating a comprehensive and universal resident and fellow education curriculum, producing timely and useful practice guidelines, and helping shape future health care policy. Finally, I believe that the globalization and expansion of AAGL must continue.  We need to continue to find creative and productive ways to collaborate with industry, government, and patient advocacy groups to foster transparent, productive innovation for our patients.

Dr. Michel Canis
Candidate for Secretary-Treasurer

My visions for AAGL

Born in 1957, I spend all my career to improve minimally invasive surgery in the Clermont-Ferrand University Department of Gynecologic surgery. I never looked for honors and prestige but being a 4-year member of the board of directors would be an opportunity to promote ideas which are essential for the future of our practice and of women health!

My objectives will be the followings

Preserve AAGL principles: Friendship, Loyalty, Open Minded, Welcoming to all and Inclusive and Innovation. These essential values should be preserved.

AAGL should stand as a US based international society of minimally invasive surgery. AAGL should continue to promote global initiatives. 

To help women from developed and developing countries to have a better access to minimally invasive surgery, teaching should be further developed: low cost online postgraduate courses in collaboration with local affiliated societies should be proposed. Many surgeons do have difficulties to attend international meetings. 

Promoting guidelines for surgical papers and surgical videos should be an objective of AAGL together with the JIMIG editors.

To develop an eco-friendly surgical practice. Ecology should and will be a major concern in our future and a global endoscopy initiative is required. Ecology in surgery should become a major topic of future AAGL Meetings. Many approaches are being developed worldwide, a special interest group should be organized to review these approaches and propose initiatives in this area.

Leading in innovation, AAGL should be opened to any new minimally invasive approach, proposing sessions and PG courses. AAGL should developed a technology watch to anticipate these changes and help AAGL members to adapt their practice

Facilitating surgical and clinical research: AAGL is a society of pioneers with innovative ideas. In the future, AAGL should also have a role in promoting clinical studies. A scientific director position assisted by an ethical committee manager should be considered over the next few years. 

A more democratic management, every member should be involved, asking all members, to propose their ideas to improve the future and the visions of AAGL.

Dr. Samar Nahas

Candidate for Director from the General Membership

I did my AAGL fellowship as a second fellowship after I completed a gynecologic oncology fellowship. The reason being I saw the gap and the need to bridge the two fellowships into one to help provide better minimally invasive surgeries, education and value-based health care for my patients.

Over the past 10 years, my role in the society has grown and matured. I have been engaging with the AAGL on several levels including but not limited to;

  • Speaker at National and International meetings,
  • Member of several committees including FMIGS Video Subcommittee of the Curriculum Standardization and FMIGS Boot Camp committee,
  • Author of Lab Faculty for post graduate courses, published author and Ad Hoc Reviewer for the Journal of Minimally Invasive Gynecology (JMIG),
  • Co-Chair of postgraduate programs. My involvement and commitment to the organization are due to the fact that I see the AAGL as the Universal leader in minimally invasive gynecologic surgery.

The AAGL, as the global leader of MIGS worldwide, has successfully grown from a national organization to an international society. It is essential to continue to work collaboratively with national and international societies to improve surgical coaching, surgery techniques and outcome, to ensure the appropriate education and recognition is provided so that women worldwide can properly be cared for with the most innovative and minimally invasive techniques.

I would like to work with the board members to see significant progress in minimally invasive surgery in complex gynecology, endometriosis, and gynecologic oncology. To help programs moving from traditional surgeries to more innovative and less invasive surgeries, in addition of focusing the attention on ERAS in minimally invasive surgeries as well as open surgeries, and for that with my education, experience, and previous collaboration, its ideal to have me as one of the general members on the board of directors.

I would be honored and thrilled to have your support and vote to represent you as a General Membership Board of Director on the AAGL Board of Directors starting in 2022.

I promise to dedicate my time and efforts to our organization, enhance education for our young physicians, to help improve outcome for our patients through advancement in innovative techniques.


Dr. Nash Moawad
Candidate for Director from the General Membership

I would be deeply honored to serve on the AAGL Board of Directors. It has been 15 years since I was graciously allowed as a resident to attend a fellowship bootcamp, a very small group at that time. Since then, I have dedicated my career to learning and advancing minimally invasive surgical options for women worldwide.

One of the greatest gifts we have as surgeons is the ability to innovate and foresee solutions to complex problems. This gives us confidence and an action plan, and gives our patients hope and courage to tackle their illnesses. My commitment in this role is to maximize ACCESS of ALL women to minimally invasive surgical options and to effective treatments for pelvic pain and endometriosis, regardless of geographic location, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, or age. To achieve this goal, I envision a comprehensive approach, encompassing education, awareness, technology, reimbursement, collaboration, accreditation, and policy change, fueled by research and evidence.

Our organization has made huge strides in advancing the Fellowship in Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery (FMIGS) and achieving recognition by ABOG as a Focused Practice. We are determined to continue to strengthen our specialty and achieve board certification. I advocate for expanding education to all residency programs and improving our reach through free membership, SurgeryU curriculum and residents’ portal, discounted registration, and resident-focused workshops in collaboration with ACOG/CREOG and other national organizations. I have been honored to chair the Steering Committee for Essentials in Minimally Invasive Gynecology (EMIG) over the past 2 years. The program has been meticulously developed and is now the crown jewel of MIGS simulation and evaluation. I strongly believe it is well positioned to replace FLS as a pre-requisite for board eligibility.

The privilege of having served on the FMIGS Board, SurgeryU Board, JMIG Editorial Board, the Global Congress of Hysteroscopy Board, and serving as faculty and chairing numerous courses, workshops, and program development have equipped me to represent you well on the AAGL Board.

I hope to earn your trust, support, and partnership as we embark on a wonderful new journey toward achieving our common goal of “Elevating Gynecologic Surgery Worldwide.”

Dr. Kevin Stepp
Candidate for Director from the General Membership

This will be my 20th year with AAGL.  I have both led and served as faculty in numerous AAGL postgraduate courses and freestanding national and international AAGL-endorsed courses.  But I was most honored when asked to serve as the Scientific Program Chair for the 45th AAGL Global Congress in Orlando, Florida.   I still view AAGL as the most relevant national or international society for gynecologic surgeons.  There is no better organization, or one with the international reach to disseminate knowledge and skills to a very hungry, progressive group of surgeons dedicated to improving women’s health.

I completed residency at MetroHealth/Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. I then completed a combined fellowship in Minimally Invasive Surgery and Urogynecology/Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery at the Cleveland Clinic.

I am currently the Division Director of Urogynecology and Pelvic Surgery for one of the largest nonprofit hospital systems in the United States: Atrium Health in Charlotte, North Carolina.  I was also the Founding Director for the FPMRS fellowship at Atrium Health.  I am a Professor in the departments of Obstetrics and Gynecology as well as Urology.

I remain actively involved with development of new surgical techniques including single port and micro-laparoscopy, robotics, and advanced visualization.  I enjoy speaking internationally on advanced laparoscopic techniques in gynecology and urogynecology and have trained over 500 physicians from more than 25 countries.  I was the first surgeon to receive the AAGL Golden Laparoscope Award twice as well as the Kurt Semm Award for Best Video for my educational surgical videos.

The AAGL is best positioned to fill the international demand for MIGS education – even as it overlaps with the other gynecologic subspecialties.  And now with AAGL’s post-COVID experience, AAGL has clearly shown its ability to harness the power of virtual learning.  So, in short, my vision for the AAGL of the future is building on past successes and helping the many gynecologic leaders of our generation reach all corners of the world.  This good work is notable and worthy of our time.

Dr. Amani Harris
Candidate for Director from Pacific Rim / India / Asia

I, Amani Harris am an advanced laparoscopic and robotic gynaecological surgeon, obstetrician and fertility specialist based in Sydney, Australia. I completed a two-year Australasian Gynaecological Endoscopy and Surgery Society (AGES) fellowship in minimally invasive surgery at Monash, Melbourne in addition to a one-year fellowship at the Sydney West Advanced Pelvic Surgery (SWAPS) Unit. I have attained a Master of Advanced Gynaecological Surgery from the University of Western Sydney and a Master of Reproductive Medicine from the University of New South Wales. My passion for improving access for all women to minimally invasive surgery and love for surgical teaching inspired me to create my own minimally invasive unit and I am now the director of training for the Sydney Minimally Invasive Gynaecological Surgery Unit, training the next generation of fellows.

I would be honoured to represent my region as an AAGL board member. Over the past 50 years, the AAGL has continued to lead in the promotion of excellence in clinical practice, education, research, innovation and advocacy. The AAGL’s swift response to these changing environmental factors has allowed it to strive and stay one step ahead through:

  • Collaboration with industry, development of new best practice for safe operating in a pandemic and reducing risk to staff and patients.
  • Facilitating a worldwide exchange of information through international webinars and education platforms that benefit millions of patients.
  • Organising highly successful virtual and hybrid conferences with record attendees worldwide, bringing the world closer together at a time of social distancing and restrictions.

As an Australian, my vision for the AAGL is to continue its mission of elevating the quality and safety of health care for women through collaboration between our two countries on environmental factors that affect health, such as climate change and promoting a sustainable and climate-resilient gynaecological society. Further I envisage the AAGL to foster partnerships within Australia and the region, embracing change, increasing visibility, awareness and benefits of the society thus attracting more members. In an everchanging fast pace world, an ongoing commitment to best practice in gynaecological surgery has never been so crucial.


Dr. Prakash Trivedi
Candidate for Director from Pacific Rim / India / Asia

Dr. Prakash Trivedi from Mumbai, India is a distinguished surgeon in field of Minimally Invasive Gynecological Surgery. His zest and zeal right from the outset – Double Gold Medal in MD Gynecology, being one of the best anatomic dissector has seen him achieve more than 45,000 endoscopic surgeries with great success.

His Passion to spread the light has seen him train more than 2,500 Gynecologists in the field and holding the most Prestigious Organizational Positions in India & Asia. Dr. Trivedi has published 10 books in MIS and has had solutions to world controversies be it the Mesh Mess, In-Bag Morcellation for Fibroids and Surgery during COVID times which has now been published and acknowledged world over.

Dr. Trivedi quotes “COVID – 19 brought the world to a standstill. Our willingness of self- transformation was truly a revolution. AAGL stood the test of time with new out of the box creative ideas, vision rebuilding women’s healthcare plus life and confidence of fellow practitioners.

We along with AAGL nurture a silent creative atmosphere, stimulate growth, poise to create opportunities to re-dream for bigger and better future. I believe in persons with commitment, passion converting static thoughts to dynamic ideas which brings enlightenment.

With AAGL for 27 years for educational purpose, PG, Cadaveric training, Surgery U, JMIG instilling rejuvenated energy, I have an intense desire to enhance skills to reach an unique goal with full potential of bright opportunities, reasoning and proficiency with accurate contingency strategies to reach every corner of the world.

I foresee huge scientific exchange worldwide. Digitalization has opened endless new vistas, previously unforeseen.

My mission is to have creative and effective ideas of education to create leaders of tomorrow with critical thinking and logical decision-making. Premier objective is to plan constructive research, minds full of innovations & standardize various MIS to a benchmark of safety and efficacy, practical modules, structured education and advocacy.

Down to earth humility of most AAGL experts, extraordinary administration is the right impetus to live in the eyes of women’s dream fulfilling a perfect healthcare – AAGL which the world admires and will respect more.”

Dr. Agnaldo Lopes
Candidate for Director from Mexico / Central & South America

I am a Full Professor of Gynecology at Federal University of Minas Gerais (UFMG) and the current president of the Brazilian Federation of Gynecology and Obstetrics Associations (FEBRASGO). Leading this society has been an opportunity to spread knowledge, offer continuing medical education, improve training in Gynecology and Obstetrics throughout Brazil, and plan actions to reduce regional and local inequalities. My life’s work has been dedicated to teaching and training in gynecological surgery, which has been my long-term dedication.

At this moment, I am coordinating the creation of standards for certification in robotic surgery in Gynecology and the subspecialties of Gynecologic Oncology and Female Pelvic Reconstructive Surgery in Brazil. I am a project leader and participant in several Brazilian and International research projects, have developed studies for gynecological cancer and MIGS for gynecological diseases and published substantially in the field.

If elected as a Board Member of the AAGL representing the Mexico/Central & South America regions, I am committed to expanding the footprint and reach of this leading society and raising the quality and safety of MIGS for women and TGNC (transgender / gender non-conforming) not only in the US but worldwide.

My plan is to increase the visibility, awareness and benefits of the organization, encourage and promote strong partnerships with national and international societies, as well as with government and academic leaders who share our mission and goals.

I am committed to cultural humility and diversity of thought and engagement by developing partnerships with people and groups who advocate for others, and to the creation of focus groups that address the concerns of millennials.

Empowering all women by providing networking and training opportunities through effective mentoring and coaching for women’s enhanced knowledge and skills in MIGS is fundamental.

Finally, positioning the AAGL for the future requires ensuring that we remain a diverse and inclusive society, elevating the entire world of gynecologic surgery.

I hope to have the opportunity to serve the AAGL community and reaffirm my full commitment to doing my best promoting the AAGL mission and vision.

Thank you very much.

Dr. Anibal Scarella
Candidate for Director from Mexico / Central & South America

Anibal Scarella is a Chilean OBGYN and professor, passionate for education, innovation, and laparoscopic surgery. After graduating as OBGYN in Valparaíso, he completed his fellowship in Reproductive Surgery at the Universidad de Chile, in Santiago. 

Since then, his primary focus has relied on reproductive medicine and advanced laparoscopic surgery, involving the academia, the public sector and private practice. He has deepened his knowledge in those areas under the guidance of renowned professors, such as Jacques and Olivier Donnez, Mauricio Abrao, and the team from the University of Valencia, with a special interest in minimally invasive surgery. 

He is currently Professor at the University of Valparaiso, Director of the Center of Human Reproduction of the same Institution, Vice-president of the Chilean Society of Reproductive Medicine and Director of the Chilean Society of OBGYN. From this position, he strives to promote minimally invasive techniques with the best standard of care in Chile and the region, bringing advanced gynecologic surgery closer to our colleagues. He has led several public health initiatives in Reproductive Medicine improving access to those economically disadvantaged. His main areas of research are fertility preservation, endometriosis and assisted reproductive technology.

As envisioned by Dr. Phillips 50 years ago, AAGL has opened an infinite future for gynecologic surgery. If elected member of the board, he would stand out as a promoter of progress and diversity, providing effective support to colleagues and patients, with special focus in limited resources settings, where women are more vulnerable. 

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