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Division of Hematology Announces $1M Donation in Honor of George E. Cartwright

Division of Hematology Announces $1M Donation in Honor of George E. Cartwright


George E. Cartwright was an internationally known hematologist. He served as the first chief for the Division of Hematology and the second chair for the Department of Internal Medicine. When George Cartwright passed away, colleagues and friends contributed to a fund in his memory. This fund supports the George E. Cartwright Memorial Endowed Lectureship, which invites distinguished lecturers who are making important and original contributions to the field of hematology.
Paul Bray, MD (Hematology) opened the lectureship and spoke about Dr. Cartwright and his enduring legacy.  Dr. Bray trained under Dr. Cartwright and in a touching final remark, he noted, "There is nothing more one could want in a role model.”
This year’s lectureship was especially meaningful. Michael Deininger, MD (Hematology) recognized Tim and Candace Dee for their contribution of $1 million to the Division of Hematology. Their generous gift will be used to establish the Dee Endowed Research Fund in Honor of George E. Cartwright, MD: to support both benign and malignant research. The Dee’s have previously given to the department to establish the George E. Cartwright, MD Presidential Endowed Chair which is currently held by Simon Fisher, MD (Endocrinology).


In recognition of their giving, Michael Deininger, MD presented Tim and Candace Dee with a framed picture of Dr. Cartwright.


This year’s distinguished lecturer was John D. Crispino, PhD, MBA. His presentation focused on “Bench to Bedside: Development of New Therapeutics for the Myeloproliferative Neoplasms.” 


John Crispino, PhD, MBA


Dr. Crispino is the Robert I. Lurie, MD and Lora S. Lurie Professor of Medicine at Northwestern University, Vice Chief of Research in the Division of Hematology/Oncology, and Associate Director of Education and Training for the Robert H. Lurie Comprehensive Cancer Center. Dr. Crispino received his PhD from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology for research on the mechanisms of RNA splicing performed in the laboratory of Dr. Phillip Sharp, Nobel Laureate in Physiology or Medicine. He then performed post-doctoral hematology research at Harvard Medical School and Children’s Hospital of Boston with Dr. Stuart Orkin before moving to Chicago in 2000. Over the past 18 years, Dr. Crispino and members of his laboratory have made many important contributions to improve our understanding of the mechanisms of normal and malignant blood development. Currently, his research is focused on the biology of red blood cells and megakaryocytes, the characterization of genetic changes that lead to Myeloproliferative Neoplasms and Acute Myeloid Leukemia, and developing novel, targeted therapies for patients with these malignancies. He has authored over 120 manuscripts, with recent papers in Nature Medicine, Cell, Cell Stem Cell, Molecular Cell, Journal of Clinical Investigation, and Blood. Dr. Crispino is a former scholar of the American Society of Hematology and the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society and was named the 2017 Researcher of the year by the Illinois Chapter of the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society. He is on the editorial boards of Leukemia and Blood Cancer Journal and reviews grants for the NIH, the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and the American Society of Hematology. Dr. Crispino also received an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management in 2011.

George E. Cartwright, MD


The George E. Cartwright Memorial Lectureship was established after Dr. Cartwright’s untimely death in early April of 1980, by donations from over 300 of his former students, trainees, and friends.  The number and diversity of donors is a testament to the impact that Dr. Cartwright has had on the lives and careers of those he mentored, as well as the contributions he has made to understanding the pathophysiology of disease.
Over his distinguished 45-year career, Dr. Cartwright has published over 280 papers on such diverse subjects as:

  • Anemias associated with nutritional deficiencies
  • The Anemia of infection
  • Iron and copper metabolism
  • Leukocyte kinetics
  • Aplastic anemia
  • Wilson’s disease
  • Hemochromatosis

Dr. Cartwright’s contagious enthusiasm for learning has influenced many young physicians to explore basic and clinical research, and, by example, he has served as a stimulating and provocative role model for hundreds of students, housestaff, and fellows.  To continue his legacy, every year the Department of Hematology invites a nationally distinguished hematologist to the University of Utah campus to lecture, meet faculty, fellows, residents, and medical students, make rounds, and overall, to sustain the high level of enthusiasm for learning and scientific exploration that Dr. Cartwright’s career embodied.