Skip to main content

David Ollila, MD, professor of surgery, has been appointed to the James H. and Jesse E. Millis Distinguished Professorship. The $1.5 million professorship was established by their son, William (Bill) Millis in honor of his parents, Jim and Jesse Millis of High Point, N.C.

Mr. and Mrs. Millis served on the UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center Board of Visitors, and Mr. Millis chaired the Board of the Medical Foundation of North Carolina and served as chair for medicine of the successful Bicentennial Campaign for Carolina. The couple served the High Point community through countless projects in support of health care, education and other facets of community life.

Dr. Ollila is surgical director of the UNC Multidisciplinary Melanoma Program and of the UNC Breast Center. He serves as associate physician-in-chief of the North Carolina Cancer Hospital and is a member of UNC Lineberger Comprehensive Cancer Center.

He said, “I am honored to be appointed to this prestigious professorship. Bill Millis understands melanoma on a very personal level, and his support of collaborative research across disciplines to better understand melanoma will help UNC increase knowledge about this cancer.”

Dr. Ollila recently spent six months as a visiting scholar at the University of Sydney in Australia and the Melanoma Institute Australia, working with the internationally renown melanoma surgeon Dr. John Thompson.

Dr. Ollila earned his undergraduate degree in chemistry from Miami University of Ohio. He earned his medical degree from the University of Cincinnati in Ohio. He completed his residency in surgery at Riverside Methodist Hospital in Columbus, Ohio and a fellowship in surgical oncology at the John Wayne Cancer Institute in Santa Monica, California before joining the UNC faculty in 1997.