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Press Release  
Release Date: Tuesday, May 28, 2013 1:29 PM
Media Contact:
Ashley Travers
Communications Officer
Health Sciences      
Dr. Henri R. Ford Speaker for Annual Drew/Syphax Lecture, Seminar

WASHINGTON -- Dr. Henri R. Ford, vice president and chief of Surgery at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA), vice-dean of Medical Education and professor and vice chair for clinical affairs in the Department of Surgery at the Keck School of Medicine of the University of Southern California, will be the guest speaker of the 42nd Annual Drew/Syphax Lecture and Seminar.

The lecture and seminar will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Monday, March 5, in the Towers Auditorium at Howard University Hospital.

The theme for this year’s lecture and seminar is “Molecular Basis for the Pathogenesis of Necrotizing Enterocolitis.”

Ford is a member of the executive committee of the board of trustees of CHLA and a member of the board of directors of the CHLA Medical Group. As a professor in Keck School of Medicine, he is an important role model for young physicians and medical students.

The lecture and seminar are in honor of Dr. Charles R. Drew and Dr. Burke Syphax and focuses on the latest surgical topics and research.

Drew came to the Howard University College of Medicine as an instructor in pathology in 1935.  He developed improved techniques for blood storage that led to the creation of large-scale blood banks early in World War II.  His discovery allowed medics to save thousands of lives of the Allied troops.

He became professor and head of the Department of Surgery at Howard University Hospital in 1941.   In 1943, Drew became the first black surgeon selected as an examiner on the American Board of Surgery.

Syphax received his bachelor’s of science degree in 1932 from Howard University and his medical degree in 1936 from Howard University College of Medicine.   He became an instructor in surgery at Howard University Hospital in 1942.

Syphax served as professor and chairman of the department from 1958 to1970. In 1944, he became one of the first black surgeons to become certified by the American Board of Surgery.



Founded in 1867, Howard University is a private, research university that is comprised of 13 schools and colleges. Students pursue studies in more than 120 areas leading to undergraduate, graduate and professional degrees. Since 1998, the University has produced two Rhodes Scholars, two Truman Scholars, a Marshall Scholar, 24 Fulbright Scholars and 11 Pickering Fellows. Howard also produces more on campus African-American Ph.D. recipients than any other university in the United States. For more information on Howard University, call 202-238-2330, or visit the University's Web site at

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