Former URMC CEO, Orthopaedics Chair Establishes Endowed Professorship

Oct. 28, 2014

C. McCollister “Mac” Evarts, M.D., former CEO of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) and past chair of the Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation, has committed $1 million to help establish an endowed professorship in support of the University’s orthopaedic educational efforts.

The gift will create the Dr. C. McCollister Evarts Professorship in Orthopaedics, which will be used to support the educational mission of the department, and help recruit and retain exceptional faculty in the field of orthopaedics. The inaugural recipient is John T. Gorczyca, M.D., director of the URMC’s Orthopaedic Residency Program.

A faculty member since 2000 and chief of the Division of Orthopaedic Trauma since 2009, Gorczyca specializes in difficult fractures, as well as complex reconstructive surgery to repair bone loss using bone transplants, artificial implants, and growth of new bone. As residency program director, Gorczyca guides residents through a rigorous training curriculum that encompasses 12 orthopaedic subspecialties and provides extensive clinical and research experience.

“This new professorship illustrates a lifelong commitment on Mac’s part to education and the importance of mentoring upcoming generations of new orthopaedic physicians,” said Mark Taubman, M.D., dean of the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry and University vice president for health sciences. “In his role as residency director for the past four years, John Gorczyca has already made a significant impact and will continue to further strengthen the educational mission of the department, setting a new standard for the future.”

Evarts retired from URMC in 2006 and is currently a faculty member at the Penn State Hershey Bone and Joint Institute.

“The care of the patient with musculoskeletal disorders lies within the training of future orthopaedic physicians,” Evarts said. “This professorship will help provide an educational environment to ensure a legacy of great medicine for generations to come.”

Evarts’ contributions to the URMC over his 50-year tenure helped advance the department and transform the orthopaedic specialty in Rochester, earning the department national recognition. His distinguished career includes pioneering work as an orthopaedic surgeon, mentor, educator and strategic leader.

He began his medical career in Rochester, graduating from the University of Rochester School of Medicine and Dentistry in 1957, followed by an internship and residency in Orthopaedics at Strong Memorial Hospital. In 1974 he was named professor and chair of the newly created Department of Orthopaedics, which established an academic component and began cultivating an Orthopaedic research enterprise. The foundation he set resulted in the department earning national prominence for its patient care, research and educational initiatives. It currently ranks annually in the top three institutions in NIH funding for orthopaedic research.

In 2003, Evarts was appointed by the University president to the post of senior vice president and vice provost for Health Affairs, and CEO of the Medical Center. He served for three years before his retirement.

Evarts is credited with helping to introduce total hip replacement surgery to the United States and highlighting the prevention of thromboembolic disease in the musculoskeletal patient. A member of the National Academy of Sciences’ Institute of Medicine, he has held the top leadership post at two academic health centers, where he helped spur advancements in medical education, research, clinical care and community outreach. The author of more than 200 articles in peer-reviewed journals, Evarts also is the editor of the five-volume textbook Surgery of the Musculoskeletal System. He has served as president of the Association of Orthopaedic Chairmen, The Hip Society, the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the American Orthopaedic Association, and the Association of Academic Health Centers.

He has received a series of national and local accolades, including one of the orthopaedic field’s highest honors, the AOA-Zimmer Award for Distinguished Contributions to Orthopaedics.