Heval Mohamed Kelli

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Refugee, dishwasher, cardiologist

Heval Mohamed Kelli came to America as a teenage Kurdish refugee from Syria and worked as dishwasher to support his family and education. He is currently the Katz Foundation Fellow in Preventive Cardiology at Emory University. He graduated Cum Laude from the Morehouse School of Medicine and completed his internal medicine residency training with honorable distinctions in social and in-patient medicine at Emory University.

Kelli dedicates his time to work with community members and leaders to solve health and education issues in under-served areas.  He co-founded and operates several non-profit organizations focused on mentorship (U-Beyond), healthcare outreach (You 4 Prevent) and medical education (Young Physician Initiative and You 4 Education).

He is also the co-founder and president of the Kurdish American Medical Association, an organization that creates a communication and mentorship platform for Kurdish American students and physicians. In collaboration with his lifelong mentor Dr. Omar Lattouf, professor of surgery at Emory University, Kelli has launched a global initiative on combating Cardio Metabolic Syndrome through mobile applications and hosting seminars in the USA and around the globe.

Kelli is currently mentored by several world-renowned cardiologist and researchers including Dr. Arshed A. Quyyumi and Dr. Laurence Sperling. He is conducting research projects focused on the impact of socioeconomic status and food access on cardiovascular health.  He is also studying the utilization of smartphone technology to bring health education to disadvantaged neighborhood. Kelli has published numerous scientific papers and presented at national and international conferences in the field of preventive cardiology.