MARVIN TURCK, MD, FIDSA, is the recipient of IDSA’s 2013 Clinical Teacher Award. This award honors a career dedicated to teaching clinical infectious diseases to fellows, residents, and medical students and recognizes excellence as a clinician and motivation to teach the next generation of physicians.
Dr. Turck has taught at the University of Washington (UW) since 1971. In this role, he has influenced dozens of medical students and residents to enter the field of infectious diseases. His teaching brilliance is best exemplified by mentioning the names of some of his former infectious diseases fellows who have achieved excellence and have become great leaders in the specialty, including Drs. King K. Holmes, Allan Ronald, Lucy Tompkins, Johan Bakken, James Hughes, and the late Dr. Walter E. Stamm.
For more than four decades, his energy, enthusiasm, incisive mind, and his remarkable humor have inspired many hundreds of students, trainees, fellows, and faculty. Most often, over the years, this has been at his favorite teaching post—the bedside. Teaching has been his first love and his professional life.
In recognition of his outstanding teaching abilities, Dr. Turck was awarded the Outstanding Medical Teacher Award by the UW Medical School graduating class in three separate years, a remarkable feat for a clinician who does not see all members of the medical school class on a regular basis. Additionally, Dr. Turck was the recipient of the highly prestigious university-wide Distinguished Teacher Award at UW in 1979. He won the Department of Medicine teaching award so often that the award was renamed in his honor. His outstanding teaching abilities have also been appreciated and rewarded on a national basis and he was elected Master of the American College of Physicians (ACP) in 1990. In 1999, after participating as a teacher in 20 straight ACP meetings, he was awarded the Lifetime Distinguished Teaching Award.
Dr. Turck spent 14 years serving the IDSA as editor of The Journal of Infectious Diseases (JID). Under his direction, the journal achieved new levels of excellence, with the number and sophistication of manuscripts improving each year. Dr. Turck oversaw the journal’s transition to twice a month publication and the establishment of an online edition in 1998, making its content widely accessible. Dr. Turck’s leadership in shepherding JID constitutes yet another means through which he has so ably contributed to dissemination of knowledge on infectious diseases.
He obtained both his bachelor’s and medical degrees from the University of Illinois in Chicago. He stayed at that institution to do his internship, senior medical residency, and chief medical residency at Cook County Hospital. In between the years of his residency, he undertook a two-year stint as an Epidemic Intelligence Service officer and infectious disease fellow at UW. Following completion of his chief medical residency, Dr. Turck accepted a junior faculty position as an assistant professor in the Department of Medicine at UW. Remarkably, only ten years later, he became physician in chief at Harborview Medical Center and vice chairman of the Department of Medicine.
For more than 40 years, Dr. Turck has had an unparalleled career in infectious diseases as an investigator, administrator, leader, teacher, clinician, and editor. IDSA is proud to add to Dr. Turck’s lengthy list of well-deserved awards by presenting him with the 2013 Clinical Teacher Award.
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