After a distinguished tenure, Clive M. Baumgarten, Ph.D., professor and interim chair of the Department of Physiology and Biophysics, has announced his intention to retire on June 30, 2021. Dr. Baumgarten, who holds joint appointments in internal medicine and biomedical engineering, joined our faculty in 1979 after completing postdoctoral training with Harry A. Fozzard, M.D., at the University of Chicago. Dr. Baumgarten received his undergraduate degree in biology in 1970 and his Ph.D. in pharmacology in 1976 from Northwestern University.
Dr. Baumgarten’s research is directed toward understanding the electrical activity of the heart at the cell, membrane and channel level with the aim of contributing to alleviating heart disease, the leading cause of death among both men and women in the United States. His research has been funded by the National Institutes of Health and the American Heart Association for more than 35 years. Dr. Baumgarten also has served on multiple NIH, Veterans Administration and American Heart Association study sections, international review panels and the editorial boards of multiple journals. In 2010, Dr. Baumgarten was recognized as a “Heart Hero” by the American Heart Association Mid-Atlantic Affiliate for dedicating his career to advancing science that saves lives.
In addition to his research, Dr. Baumgarten is a consummate mentor and educator. He has been actively involved in the M.D.-Ph.D. program for more than a decade and serves as the program’s associate director. In 2009, he received the School of Medicine’s Distinguished Mentor Award, and in 2013, the Enrique Gerszten, M.D. Faculty Teaching Excellence Award. Besides his roles in graduate student training and education, Dr. Baumgarten has directed the M1 physiology course since 2010 and co-directed the M2 cardiovascular course since the onset of the C3 curriculum.
We are particularly grateful for Dr. Baumgarten’s service as interim chair of the Department of Physiology and Biophysics. He has provided thoughtful, diligent and consistent leadership for the department during a time of prolonged transition.
Please join me in congratulating Dr. Baumgarten on his remarkable 42 years at our institution and all he has accomplished during his longstanding and stellar career at the VCU School of Medicine.
With all good wishes,