The University of Cincinnati College of Medicine was the last of the established medical schools in the United States to integrate the once separate fields of obstetrics and gynecology into a single department.
Until 1967, gynecology was a part of the department of surgery and residents received training in only obstetrics at the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine and the UC Health University Hospital (now University of Cincinnati Medical Center.)
Dr. Stanley Garber, a private practitioner with a large practice at The Christ Hospital, had been appointed director of obstetrics in 1949. During his tenure, the department was staffed by private practitioners like himself who volunteered their services to the University.
In 1966, Dr. Garber resigned over the unwillingness of the College of Medicine to unify obstetrics and gynecology. This action led to the approval to unify obstetrics and gynecology into a single department. This was accomplished in 1967 when Dr. Richard Stander was appointed the first full-time director.
Dr. Clarence McLain was recruited as the second full-time faculty member. A major portion of the funding of the department at the time was from the Cincinnati Maternal and Infant Care Project, which was a combined program involving the University of Cincinnati College of Medicine, the University of Cincinnati Medical Center and the Cincinnati Health Department.
During the next few years, Dr. Stander appointed a total of seven clinicians and two PhDs.
Dr. Stander resigned in 1975 as director of the department to become director of education for the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.
Dr. McLain served as the acting director until Dr. Sam Seeds was appointed department director or chair in September 1976.
Dr. Seeds was one of the first maternal-fetal medicine sub-specialists in the United Stated and he continued building departmental expertise in obstetrics. He established the Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine, with Dr. Tom Barden as the division director.
Drs. Stander and Seeds discontinued having local private physicians serve as attending physicians at the University of Cincinnati Medical Center, instituting instead a policy of using only full-time faculty members to supervise residents. Dr. Seeds also established rotations for residents at The Christ hospital.
Dr. Seeds died unexpectedly in May 1980. After an interval during which Dr. McLain again served as acting director, Dr. Tom Barden was appointed as the third full-time department director or chair.
The Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine continued to develop linkages with the Division of Neonatology at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center. The Division of Maternal-Fetal Medicine became the dominant provider in the market and developed considerable strengths in research.
Dr. Barden announced his resignation in 1987.
Dr. McLain again served as the acting director of the department until Dr. Robert Rebar was appointed as the fourth full-time director/chair in 1988.
During Dr. Rebar’s tenure as department chair, the department’s research activities increased dramatically, particularly with the recruitment of Leslie Myatt, PhD, in 1988. He established a successful research lab that was the core for a busy PhD research group in the department. The department achieved a national reputation of excellence as an academic department with impressive basic science research activity. Dr. Rebar resigned as chair in 1999.
In 2000, Dr. Baha Sibai was appointed as the fifth full-time chair in the history of the department. Dr. Sibai brought a national and international reputation to the department, as one of the world’s leading authorities on preeclampsia and hypertension in pregnancy. He attracted a number of new faculty, particularly in Maternal-Fetal Medicine. In May, 2005, Dr. Sibai resigned as chair but stayed on as a tenured professor in the department.
Leslie Myatt, PhD, was appointed the interim chair by the interim dean. Dr. Myatt served as the interim chair from May 2005 until January 2006. Dr. Elizabeth Kelly was appointed the vice chair for clinical affairs with responsibility for overseeing and directing the clinical enterprise.
Dr. David Stern, dean of the College of Medicine, appointed Dr. Arthur Evans as the chair for the department in January 2007, to be effective July 2007. Concurrent with Dr. Evans’s appointment, Dr. Elizabeth Kelly was appointed interim chair.
On July 1, 2007, Dr. Evans took over as department chair. On July 1, 2007, Dr. Evans took over as department chair. He served until Sept. 1, 2019 when Dr. Elizabeth Kelly again became interim chair. Dr. Michael Thomas became chair on March 1, 2020.
|Dr. Stanley Garber (Obstetrics only)||1949 – 1966|
|Dr. Robert Stander||1967 – 1975|
|Dr. Sam Seeds||1976 – 1980|
|Dr. Tom Barden||1981 – 1988|
|Dr. Robert Rebar||1988 – 1999|
|Dr. Baha Sibai||2000 - 2005|
|Dr. Arthur Evans||2007 – 2019|
|Dr. Michael Thomas||2020 - present|