The American Medical Association has chosen P. John Seward, M.D., as its new top executive. Seward, 56, is a family practitioner from Rockford, Ill., and current chairman of the AMA Board of Trustees.
Seward succeeds James S. Todd, M.D., as executive vice president of the 300,000-member physician organization. Todd, who has held the position since 1990, announced last spring his intention to retire in June 1996.
The AMA received 164 applications from aspirants for the top executive position. The board met with four candidates in eight hours of interviews and discussion prior to making its decision Oct. 18.
Seward served as an AMA commissioner to the Joint Commission on Accreditation of Healthcare Organizations from 1992 to 1994. He chaired the AMA Technical Advisory Committee on Health System Reform from 1992 to 1993.
Seward earned his medical degree at the University of Illinois College of Medicine.
AMA President Lonnie R. Bristow said Seward "understands the new changes that challenge today's practice environment, has superb administrative skills, and is an excellent advocate for physicians and their patients on Capitol Hill."