December 10, 2004

Chapman awarded AMA’s highest honor

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American Medical Association President John Nelson, M.D., left, presents Judy Jean Chapman with the AMA’s Distinguished Service Award honoring the work of her late husband, former VUSM Dean John Chapman, M.D. Laura Meyers, M.D., right, a former student of Chapman’s at VUSM, also attended the ceremony in Atlanta.
photo courtesy of the AMA

Chapman awarded AMA’s highest honor

John E. Chapman, M.D., former dean of the Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, was posthumously awarded the 2004 Distinguished Service Award by the American Medical Association. The award — the association's highest honor — was presented during the opening session of the 2004 Interim Meeting of the AMA House of Delegates in Atlanta on Saturday, Dec. 4. Chapman was notified of the award prior to his death two months ago

The Distinguished Service Award is given to a member of the AMA for meritorious service in the science and art of medicine. Judy Jean Chapman accepted the award for her late husband, along with Laura Meyers, M.D., a former student at VUSM during Chapman's tenure as dean.

“Dr. Chapman's unwavering dedication throughout his illustrious career to enhancing the quality of medical education and health care is commendable,” said AMA President John C. Nelson, M.D. “He significantly contributed to the strength of academic medicine and was an outstanding advocate for the medical community.”

The AMA honored Chapman for his “distinguished and remarkable career dedicated to enhancing the quality of medical education, not only in the United States, but worldwide.” At the AMA, Chapman served as chair of the Council on Medical Education, where he spearheaded three reports on the “ecology of medical education.” He was the founding member of the AMA's Section on Medical Schools in 1976, and served as a representative to the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education, and chair of the Liaison Committee on Medical Education.

“Dr. Chapman will long be remembered for his impact on medicine, and this award is a testament to that,” said Harry R. Jacobson, M.D., vice chancellor for Health Affairs. “Dr. Chapman dedicated his life to improving medical education, and we're proud to be the direct benefactors of this commitment.”

At Vanderbilt, Chapman served as the dean of the School of Medicine for more than 25 years. Until his death Oct. 13 at the age of 73, Chapman was associate vice chancellor for Medical Alumni Affairs and professor emeritus of Medical Administration and Pharmacology.