John Webster Kirklin, MD*
A native of Muncie, Indiana, Dr. John Kirklin received his M.D. degree from Harvard University. He later became Chairman, Department of Surgery at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota. Many health professionals have indicated that November 1, 1966, when Dr. Kirklin came to Alabama, was a red letter day in the history of the University of Alabama School of Medicine. As professor and also the Chairman of Surgery for 16 years, his development of an exemplary Department of Surgery is well known. Cardiovascular patients were referred to Dr. Kirklin from many states and countries. His more than 750 contributed papers reflect the research productivity of his program.
The University of Alabama Board of Trustees recognized Dr. Kirklin’s accomplishments by naming the I.M. Pei designed clinic in Birmingham the Kirklin Clinic. Among his many honors are the UAB Distinguished Lecturer, the Mayo Foundation Distinguished Alumnus Award, and the AMA and American Heart Association’s Distinguished Service Awards.