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Gary Crooks: Perelman Professorship in Internal Medicine

Dr. Gary Crooks with Ruth and Raymond Perelman

Dr. Gary W. Crooks, associate professor of medicine, has been named the first recipient of the Ruth C. and Raymond G. Perelman Professorship in Internal Medicine in the department of medicine at the School of Medicine.

The Ruth C. and Raymond G. Perelman Professorship in Internal Medicine will provide major support for training the next generation of primary care physicians at Penn. The Professorship acknowledges that primary care physicians are often more than health care providers. Unlike specialists in other medical disciplines, primary care physicians have the opportunity to develop a special bond of trust and respect over time with the individuals and families who are their patients.

“When Ruth and I decided to create this Professorship, we wanted to honor the important role that a primary care physician can play in family life over generations,” explained Raymond G. Perelman.

Primary care physicians stand as the initial point of contact for patient  concerns—serving, in effect, as the face of health care—often guiding patients to other specialists elsewhere in the health system. In some instances, primary care physicians act as counselors, advocates, and friends. The Perelman Professorship will help the School of Medicine to continue training and mentoring the finest young internists in primary clinical care. This is the first Professorship in General Internal Medicine that will be devoted to an active full-time clinician.

As the first recipient of the Perelman Professorship, Dr. Crooks will be able to build on nearly 25 years of experience as a resident, faculty member, and practicing clinician at Penn. “For me, both personally and professionally, it is the highest privilege to have been designated as the first Ruth C. and Raymond G. Perelman Professor of Internal Medicine,” said Dr. Crooks.

“I was fortunate at the beginning of my medical career at Penn to have had both Dr. Sylvan Eisman and his associate, Dr. Bill Hanson, as my role models and mentors,” added Dr. Crooks. “I believe the success of my practice is attributable, in no small measure, to the advice and influence of these two outstanding clinicians. The Perelman Professorship will allow me to continue to practice medicine in this manner and, hopefully, to mentor younger physicians in clinical care in the same way that Drs. Eisman and Hanson guided me.”

“The Ruth C. and Raymond G. Perelman permanently recognizes the central importance of outstanding primary care practice and education in the dynamics of a great academic medical center like Penn,” said Dr. Arthur H. Rubenstein, EVP of the University for the Health System and Dean of the School of Medicine. “We are enormously grateful to the Perelmans for their vision and generosity in establishing this unique endowed professorship. As the first holder of the chair, Dr. Gary Crooks will be a visible role model for our students who aspire to be distinguished primary care physicians.”

“The Perelmans are two of the most outstanding philanthropists in the city of Philadelphia,” said Dr. Andrew I. Schafer, professor and chair of the department of medicine. “It is indeed an honor for the University to be a recipient of their generous gift.”

“Some people may overlook the value of primary care when they focus on other clinical areas with more drama, technology, and money, but the Perelman Professorship reminds us that primary care is a central and integral part of the School of Medicine’s business,” adds Dr. Sankey Williams, professor of medicine and chief of the Division  of General Internal Medicine at UPHS. “We’re very thankful for the Perelmans’ generosity because it means so much to the people in the department of medicine who provide primary care services every day and because it was so unexpected. For years, Dr. Crooks has been one of the first doctors in the hospital in the morning and one of the last to leave in the evening.”

Dr. Crooks received his undergraduate degree in 1977 from Stanford University and his medical degree in 1981 from Harvard Medical School. He did a one-year internship, 1981-82, and two years of residency, 1982-1984, at HUP.

Since completing his residency, Dr. Crooks has developed a successful clinical practice within Penn’s department of medicine. He has been recognized as a “Top Doc” by Philadelphia magazine and as an  “Outstanding Primary Care Physician” by Town and Country magazine. He has also co-authored a number of articles for peer-reviewed and non peer-reviewed publications.

Ray Perelman has been a member of Penn Medicine’s Board of Trustees since 2002. He has numerous business interests and has been President and Chairman of the Board of RGP Holdings, Inc.; Director of Champion Parts, Inc.; and Chairman and CEO of Belmont Holdings Corporation, Inc. He and his wife are two of the most prominent philanthropists in the city. In addition to their on-going interest in health care, they have devoted themselves for years to a number of areas including the Jewish community and the arts.


  Almanac, Vol. 52, No. 5, September 27, 2005


September 27, 2005
Volume 52 Number 5


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