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The newspaper of The Johns Hopkins University April 25, 2005 | Vol. 34 No. 31
Former SOM Dean to Receive President's Medal

Richard Ross in 1990, his last year as dean of the School of Medicine

By Trent Stockton
Johns Hopkins Medicine

Richard S. Ross, former dean of the School of Medicine and vice president for medicine of the university, and a renowned cardiologist who served as president of the American Heart Association, will be given the The Johns Hopkins University President's Medal in recognition of his distinguished career in medicine and "extraordinary contributions to higher education, patient care and public health."

President William R. Brody will present the medal to Ross at a special reception from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. on Wednesday, April 27, in the Thomas B. Turner Concourse of the School of Medicine, East Baltimore campus.

At the reception, Brody said, Ross will be recognized for his "efforts to understand and treat patients in the clinic, in the research lab and at the highest levels of health care administration."

"This is a great opportunity to recognize Dr. Ross' extraordinary accomplishments in medicine and his lifelong devotion to improving the public health," added Edward D. Miller, dean of the medical faculty and CEO of Johns Hopkins Medicine.

Ross served as dean of the medical school from 1975 to 1990, the second longest tenure in the history of Johns Hopkins, during which time he oversaw substantial growth of the faculty and research funding from the National Institutes of Health.

Among his significant contributions as a clinician-scientist-teacher, he directed the Wellcome Research Laboratory at Johns Hopkins, in which scientists developed several novel methods of examining and treating heart conditions. In the 1960s, they developed coronary cineangiography, a method of studying dynamic movements of the heart using cine film. A technique of measuring myocardial blood flow with radioactive gas injected selectively into the coronary arteries also originated from the lab.

Other areas of Ross' research included the relationship between coronary anatomy and prognosis in coronary artery disease and the evaluation of surgical procedures for the treatment of coronary artery disease. One testament to his expertise came when he was asked to be one of three physicians to evaluate whether President Nixon was well enough to testify during the Watergate trials.

The JHU President's Medal is an honor extended by the university to individuals who have achieved unusual distinction and has been awarded to heads of state, members of Congress, diplomats, literary figures, academics and other noteworthy individuals. First bestowed in 1978, the medal is awarded at the discretion of the president.

Previous recipients include Supreme Court Justice William Brennan, Sen. Bob Kasten, Corazon Aquino, Tom Clancy, Tom Wolfe, Leon Uris, Leon Fleischer, Walter Sondheim and Colin Powell.


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