Physician Investigators

benjamin thomas md, atlanta

Benjamin Thomas, MD, Internal Medicine Principal Investigator

Dr. Thomas has been an investigator with Mt. Vernon since 2013 and has decades of experience in the medical and clinical research field. Dr. Thomas attended Duke University for his undergraduate degree and obtained his M.D. from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1980. He is a board-certified family medicine physician and is currently a practicing locum tenen physician for various medical practices in Georgia. Dr. Thomas is also a member of the American Academy of Family Physicians and the Georgia Academy of Family Practice. His clinical research experience includes many different therapeutic areas including, but not limited to, constipation, IBS, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, overactive bladder, and atopic dermatitis.

Stephen Blank, MD, Principal Investigator

“My caring and compassion for people show through my ability to be fully present and listen to my patients. As my communication style is direct and clear, I connect easily with my patients. My patients know that they are heard and understood and that their concerns are being addressed.”

Dr. Stephen Blank received his undergraduate degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and earned his medical degree from the College of Medicine of New Jersey. He moved to Atlanta in 1977 to begin his residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at Emory University and has called Atlanta home ever since. He’s been in private practice since 1981 and founded Mt Vernon OB/GYN Associates in 1986.

A board-certified OB/GYN, Dr. Blank specializes in obstetrics, gynecology, high-risk obstetrics, infertility, laparoscopic surgery, PMS, and perimenopausal and menopausal medicine. He is a Fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and a Diplomate of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology. He is an active member of the Georgia OB-GYN Society, The Medical Association of Georgia, and The North American Menopause Society.

Dr. Blank is a past Chairman of the Department of OB/GYN at Northside Hospital. As an early proponent and advocate for the establishment of specialized women’s health care centers, he was instrumental in the development, design, and construction of Northside Hospital’s Women’s Center, acting as Lead Physician Liaison. The Women’s Center was constructed during his watch as Chairman of the OB/GYN Department.

Dr. Blank believes that research is a vital part of healthcare. He has been a Lead Medical Investigator for Clinical Research Trials in Gynecology and Obstetrics for the past eight years.

Dr. Blank and his wife reside in Northwest Atlanta. They are blessed with three sons, two daughters-in-law, and two grandsons. For relaxation and fun, he enjoys golfing, skiing, reading and spending time with his family.

Lauren Jones, NP, Clinical Research Sub-Investigator

Lauren Jones, NP, Sub-Investigator

Lauren has almost 20 years of experience in the medical field. She started as a RN on postpartum, newborn nursery, and NICU units and graduated with her Nurse Practitioner degree from University of Cincinnati in 2010. Her NP experience includes OBGYN, breast surgery, and clinical research. Lauren joined Mount Vernon Clinical Research in January of 2021. Her research experience includes vaccines, women’s health, NAFLD/NASH, urinary incontinence, COVID-19 testing and treatment, cancer screening, eosinophilic esophagitis, osteoarthritis, and medical device studies.