Donald H. Stewart, Jr.
Donald H. Stewart, Jr. was born a "Tar Heel" at Duke University Hospital on December 8, 1934. His family lived in Chapel Hill, North Carolina, but there was no hospital there at the time. His father, a Presbyterian minister, had immigrated to this country from England in the 1920s. They lived for awhile in Frankfort, Kentucky where he attended the first grade. In April 1941 they moved to Houston, Texas where Dr. Stewart graduated from high school and then he returned to North Carolina to attend Davidson College. He
subsequently attended Washington University School of Medicine.
After 2 years of medical school, he thought that perhaps research would be more interesting and applied for and received a National Institute of Health fellowship that enabled him to spend a year in London at St. Thomas' Hospital before returning to complete his medical degree in St. Louis. A year of medical internship at Duke with Dr. Eugene Stead and then a year of general surgery with Dr. Nathan Womach at the University of North Carolina was highlighted by Dr. Stewart marrying Anne Donnelly who was a senior at Duke University. Dr. and Mrs. Stewart moved to Syracuse so he could study neurosurgery under the tutelage of Drs. Robert King, Herbert Lourie, and Sidney Watkins. After spending 2 years in the United States Air Force (1968-1970), they returned to Syracuse where Dr. Stewart entered the practice of neurosurgery and he and Anne raised their four children.
Dr. and Mrs. Stewart were pleased when he was asked to be president of the Congress as he had not moved up through any elective office but, rather, had spent considerable time working with the Joint Socio-Economic Committee as well as the Washington Committee of which he was a founding member. They resumed the custom of having the June Executive Committee Meeting at a location where it would be suitable for their families to join them in the off hours so they could combine work with vacation. This resulted in a much more pleasant and fraternal group and led to the development of many longterm friendships.
Since the annual meeting was to be held in Toronto, they made a special effort to become acquainted with Canadian neurosurgeons and involve them in the Congress. They were particularly pleased that Susan and Alan Hudson spearheaded this planning effort and they since have become great friends. They count many other Canadians as close friends as well.
Dr. Stewart tried to create an international flavor for the Congress and invited Dr. Keiji Sano, an eminent Japanese neurosurgeon, to be the honored guest. This greatly facilitated further friendships and dialogue between North American and Japanese neurosurgeons.
Since those days in the early 1980s, their children have grown, married, finished college, and medical school and they, too, have continued to enjoy life and the many associations made as a result of their time with the Congress of Neurological Surgeons. Dr. Stewart has spent several years on the Board of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) along with other former Congress presidents, and currently serves as the vice president of that organization. To his great enjoyment, Dr. Stewart was reappointed to the Washington Committee. He has also served as chairman of the Guidelines Committee of the AANS which developed the first set of surgical procedure guidelines established on a national consensus basis. Currently he is the chairman of the Peer Review Committee of the AANS which is attempting to establish a peer review system for neurosurgery.