Richard D. Wood Distinguished Alumni Award

The Distinguished Alumni Award at Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia is named for Richard D. Wood, Sr., who served as a member of CHOP’s Board of Trustees for 45 years.

When Children’s Hospital was incorporated in 1858 — three years after its founding — the name G.A. Wood was among the signers. Thus began a family tradition of service to the nation’s first children’s hospital.

Richard D. Wood, Sr., a descendant of G.A. Wood, became the first president of Children’s Hospital. He joined the board in 1950 and played a key role in the Hospital’s development into one of the finest pediatric medical centers in the nation and the world.

Long active in children’s healthcare on a national level, Wood served on the board of the National Association of Children’s Hospitals and Related Institutions, Inc. and created the association’s “Study to Determine the Uniqueness of Children’s Hospitals.”

In June 1989, Children’s Hospital’s new pediatric ambulatory care center was dedicated in honor of Richard D. Wood, Sr., and the facility has become known as the Wood Center.

Today, Richard D. Wood, Jr. is an Emeritus Trustee and carries forth the Wood family’s commitment to the health and well-being of children.

Each year, the Distinguished Alumni Award is presented to an alumnus with significant medical and scientific achievements that distinguish the alumnus from his or her peers.

2019 Winner

Dr. Adzick N. Scott Adzick, MD, MMM, FACS, FAAP, is an internationally recognized pioneer in fetal surgery. He has dedicated his career to the pursuit of groundbreaking prenatal treatments for life-threatening and debilitating birth defects, including leading a breakthrough study that demonstrated performing fetal surgery for spina bifida results in significantly improved outcomes compared to conventional postnatal repair. Dr. Adzick led the creation of the Garbose Family Special Delivery Unit, the world’s first birth facility in a pediatric hospital specifically designed for healthy mothers carrying babies with known birth defects.

He is an active pediatric general and thoracic surgeon and performs more than 400 operations a year. In addition to fetal surgery, he performs surgery in newborns including repairs for congenital diaphragmatic hernia, abdominal wall defects, lung lesions and other complex neonatal conditions. As a part of the Congenital Hyperinsulinism Center team, he has performed more than 500 pancreatectomies — the most of any surgeon in the world — and more than 250 babies have been cured of focal hyperinsulinism through surgery. He is also a leader of the Pediatric Thyroid Center team, which recently demonstrated that high thyroid surgery volumes at CHOP are associated with extremely low complication rates.

Dr. Adzick has had National Institutes of Health grant support for more than 30 years and has authored more than 600 peer-reviewed publications and has an h-index of 103. He was elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 1998. He was awarded the John Scott Medal in 2013. Created in 1816, the John Scott Medal is presented to men and women whose inventions and innovations improved the “comfort, welfare and happiness of humankind” in a significant way. Previous recipients include Thomas Edison, Madame Curie, the Wright Brothers, Nicola Tesla, Edwin Land, Jonas Salk, Frederick Banting, Guglielmo Marconi, Alexander Fleming and several Nobel laureates. In 2015, Dr. Adzick received the Samuel D. Gross Prize, one of the oldest prizes for surgery and surgical research in the world. It was established by Dr. Gross, the chair of surgery at Thomas Jefferson University, immortalized by Thomas Eakins’ painting “The Gross Clinic.” The Samuel D. Gross Prize was first awarded in 1895 and is only awarded once every five years to the American surgeon who has made the greatest contributions to surgery.

Dr. Adzick earned his baccalaureate and medical school degrees from Harvard, completed his surgical residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and his pediatric surgery fellowship at Boston Children’s Hospital. He holds a Master of Medical Management degree from Carnegie Mellon University. Dr. Adzick was an attending surgeon at the University of California San Francisco from 1988 until 1995, when he was recruited to CHOP. He is the C. Everett Koop Professor of Pediatric Surgery at CHOP and Professor of Surgery, Pediatrics, and Obstetrics and Gynecology in the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.

Past Awardees

2018 — Alan Cohen, MD
2017 — James A. Katowitz, MD
2016 — Stephen Ludwig, MD
2015 — Elaine H. Zackai, MD
2014 — Robert A. Zimmerman, MD
2013 — James O’Neill, MD
2012 — Anna Meadows, MD
2011 — Guilio D’Angio, MD
2010 — Shirley Bonnem
2009 — Walter J. Gamble, MD
2008 — Lucy B. Rorke-Adams, MD
2007 — Balu H. Athreya, MD
2006 — John J. Downes, MD
2005 — Gary R. Fleisher, MD
2004 — James A. Stockman III, MD
2003 — Audrey E. Evans, MD
2002 — C. Everett Koop, MD, ScD
2001 — Stanley A. Plotkin, MD
2000 — Patrick S. Pasquariello, Jr., MD
1999 — No award granted
1998 — No award granted
1997 — Louise Schnaufer, MD
1996 — Sidney Friedman, MD
1995 — Patricia F. Borns, MD
1994 — No award granted
1993 — Leonard Bachman, MD
1992 — Robert Kaye, M
1991 — Albert W. Kitts, MD
1990 — Dale G. Johnson, MD
1989 — T. F. McNair Scott, MD
1988 — Richard D. Wood, Sr.


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