Tarris Rosell, Ph.D., D.Min., M.Div.

Clinical Associate Professor


Clinical Associate Professor, Department of History and Philosophy of Medicine

Education and Training

  • PhD, MA, 2002, 1999 Vanderbilt University
  • DMin, 1990 Colgate Rochester Divinity School
  • MDiv, 1983 Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary
  • BA, 1980 Bethel University
  • Fellowship in Clinical Ethics, 1997-99 Vanderbilt University Medical Center
  • Internship in Clinical Ethics, 1995-97 Vanderbilt University Medical Center
  • Clinical Pastoral Education Internship, 2003 V.A. Medical Center, Kansas City
  • Certificate of Pastoral Care, 1987 Gordon Hoople Institute, Onondaga Pastoral Counseling Center

Personal statement

Tarris Rosell joined the Department of History and Philosophy of Medicine in 2009 as a part-time clinical associate professor. He lectures in the School of Medicine and beyond on many topics within the field of biomedical ethics. Dr. Rosell provides ethics consultation for the University of Kansas Hospital, where he co-chairs the Hospital Ethics Committee and leads the ethics consultation service. As a member of the faculty, he mentors students in directed studies and Clendening Fellowship research projects. Dr. Rosell also co-facilitates monthly ethics case discussion groups with medical students and residents. Research interests include clinical bioethics, health and healthcare disparities, and the intersections of medicine and religion.


Service to the wider community includes facilitation of multi-disciplinary ethics rounds in other local institutions, membership on a faith based health system bioethics committee and IRB, and membership on the Clinical Ethics Consultation Affairs Committee of the American Society of Bioethics and Humanities. Dr. Rosell also holds academic and professional appointments as the Rosemary Flanigan Chair at the Center for Practical Bioethics, and Professor of Pastoral Theology (Ethics & Ministry Praxis) at Central Baptist Theological Seminary. He is a member of the ordained clergy in a Protestant faith tradition.

Publications (selected)

Rosell, Tarris. Personal Reflection: “Mortality Moments.” Journal of Pastoral Care 55, No. 2 (Summer 2001): 201-202.

Rosell, Tarris. “Another Take on the Theory/Practice Dynamic: A CPE Sabbatical for Seminary Professors.”  Journal of Pastoral Care & Counseling59, No. 4 (Winter 2005): 393-396.

Rosell, Tarris. “Pastoral Products or Pastoral Care?  How Marketplace Language Affects Ministry in Veterans Hospitals.” Journal of Pastoral Care & Counseling 60, No. 4 (Winter 2006): 363-367.

Rosell, Tarris. “Stem Cell Research: Debates and Divides.” Christian Ethics Today 11, No. 2 (Spring 2005): 18-19.

Rosell, Tarris. “Grieving the Loss of a Companion Animal: Pastoral Perspective and Personal Narrative Regarding  One Sort of Disenfranchised Grief.” Review & Expositor 102, No. 1 (Winter 2005): 47-63.

Rosell, Tarris. “Life After Schiavo.” Christian Ethics Today 11, No. 3, Aggregate Issue 55 (Summer 2005): 13l

Rosell, Tarris. “An Ethics Conflict and Culture: Should This Kidney Be Used?” Pediatric Nursing 32, No. 1 (Jan/Feb 2006): 68-70.

Rosell, Tarris. “Specialty Healthcare Access: A Response to Disparities and Dilemmas.” Practical Bioethics Vol.1, No. 4; Vol. 2, No.1 (Fall/Winter 2005/2006): 2, 16.

Rosell, Tarris, et al. Contributing Editor, Practical Bioethics: Disparities in Health and Healthcare Vol. 1, No. 4; Vol. 2, No. 1 (Fall/Winter 2005/2006).

Rosell, Tarris. “After Terri: An Ethics of Reciprocity.” Practical Bioethics 2, No. 3 and 4 (Spring/Summer 2006): 8-10, 12.

Rosell, Tarris. “’Tanya, the One with Jonathan’s Kidney’: A Living Unrelated Donor Case of Church Associates.” Chapter 18 in Complex Ethical Consultations: Cases that Haunt Us, Denise Dudzinski and Paul Ford, editors, Cambridge University Press, 2008.

Davis, Merry, Tarris Rosell, Jeanne Twohig, Elizabeth DiStefano, “Sparking Local Faith Community Support for Palliative Care: One Health System’s Experience.” Supportive Voice, Vol 14, 2 (Fall 2009).

Friedman, T, J Loitman, and T Rosell. “Primary Depression and the Voluntary Suspension of Eating and Drinking: Considerations,” AAHPM Bulletin of the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine, Vol 11, 2 (Summer 2010): 1-3.

Rosell, Tarris. Review: Ecologies of Grace: Environmental Ethics and Christian Theology, Willis Jenkins. Review & Expositor 108 (107), No. 1 (Winter 2011 (2010)): 112-113.

Rosell, Tarris. “Normative Objections to Posing Plastinated Bodies: An Ethics of Bodily Repose.” Chapter 9, pp 90-100, in Controversial Bodies: Thoughts on the Public Display of Plastinated Corpses, ed. John Lantos, MD. Johns Hopkins University Press, 2011.

Presentations (selected)

“Disaster Readiness and Ethics: Pre-Serving the Underserved.” Lecture at “Disaster Ethics” symposium, Kansas City, MO, Dec 7, 2011.

“’What are we going to do with Joe?’ How Deciders Decide”; “What happens when the family says, ‘No!’? Ethics of Family Opposition to First Person Consent Organ Donation”; “’Without reasonable hope for meaningful recovery’: An Ethics Perspective.” Lectures for Missouri Chaplains Association, Missouri Health Association annual meeting, Tan-Tar-A Resort, Missouri, Nov 10, 2011.

“Ethics and Dysphagia: Concepts and Cases.” Lecture and Panel, Kansas Speech and Hearing Association, Overland Park, KS, Sept 15, 2011.

“What happens if the family says ‘No!’? Ethics of Opposition to ‘First Person Consent’ Organ Donation.” Medicine Grand Rounds, University of Kansas Medical Center, Kansas City, KS, May 18, 2011.

“What happens if the family says ‘No!’? Ethics of Opposition to ‘First Person Consent’ Organ Donation.” Saint Luke’s Health System Bioethics Committee in-service presentation, Saint Luke’s South, Overland Park, KS, May 11, 2011. Lunch & Learn ethics presentation, Saint Luke’s South Hospital, Overland Park, KS, June 30, 2011; Noon Ethics Conference lecture, Research Medical Center, Kansas City, MO, April 20, 2011.

“’First Person Consent’ and Family Opposition to Organ Donation.” Healthcare Attorneys’ Roundtable, Kaufmann Foundation, Kansas City, MO, May 4, 2011.

“Advance Directives and ‘Death Panels’.” Webcast for “Beyond the Basics,” Oklahoma University Health Sciences College, Palliative Care Resource Center, April 22, 2011.

“Stem Cell Ethics: More Heat Than Light?” Public lecture for bioethics course, Graceland University, Lamoni, IA, April 25, 2011.

“’Without reasonable hope for meaningful recovery’: An Ethics Perspective.” Medicine Grand Rounds, Saint Luke’s Hospital, Kansas City, MO, April 8, 2011.

Last modified: Mar 28, 2012