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Surgeons honor Robert Weiss

Yale Medicine Magazine, 2009 - Spring


As surgeons gathered for grand rounds at the 14th Annual Spring Reunion of the Yale Surgical Society, John A. Libertino, M.D., HS ’70, praised his friend and colleague, Robert M. Weiss, M.D., chief and the Donald Guthrie Professor of Urology, and recalled their joint arrival in New Haven in 1967. The reunion honored Weiss, who served as interim chair of surgery for two years.

“I came as a first-year resident and Bob was a first-year attending,” Libertino said in the Fitkin Amphitheatre. “We were both brought to this institution by Bernard Lytton, who was the new, dynamic chief of urology, and represented the medical school very well. We began working at Yale and came to admire and respect it.” Ten years after Weiss’ arrival in 1967, he became a full professor, and in 1988 he became chief of the Section of Urology.

Robert Udelsman, M.D., M.B.A., chair and William H. Carmalt Professor of Surgery, also praised Weiss, who preceded him as interim chair of surgery from 1999 to 2001. “Everybody in the audience has a personal story of what Bob Weiss did for you,” Udelsman said. “Bob ran the department before I got here and I will always be grateful for his advice, his leadership, and his skills.”

The surgical reunion began with a reception in the newly dedicated Education Suite before the lecture in Fitkin Amphitheatre, where Libertino discussed “Novel Techniques in Partial Nephrectomy.”

After Libertino’s talk, Weiss traced the history of urology at Yale from the early 1900s to the present.

This year’s Samuel Harvey Award went to Karen A. Diefenbach, M.D., who came to Yale as a pediatric surgery fellow and is now an assistant professor of pediatric surgery.

The Lindskog International Travel Awards went to three medical students planning to pursue careers in surgery, and who have already completed surgical rotations abroad: Carolyn Goldberg, who went to Vietnam; Jill Rubinstein, who was in Zambia; and Rajendra Sawh-Martinez, who went to Honduras.

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