H. Hunt Batjer

1999, Boston

Hunt Batjer was born in 1951 in Burlington, Vermont to parents Henry Huntington Batjer and Eleanor Thomas Batjer. During the Korean conflict, Mr. Batjer returned to naval service as a Lieutenant Commander. Hunt and his mother moved briefly to California, and after the war the family settled in West Texas in the city of Saint Angelo. Early on athletics became a passion, as did academics particularly centered on the sciences and mathematics. Hunt participated in varsity basketball as well baseball but clearly baseball was his primary interest. As he could not hit, and was tall in stature and left handed; pitching became his central interest. After being drafted by the Baltimore Orioles as a free agent in 1970 he elected to attend the University of Texas on an athletic scholarship.

In 1973 he entered the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School in Dallas and graduated with the doctor of medicine degree in 1977 with Alpha Omega Alpha destination. Following an internship in general surgery at UT Southwestern, he performed his neurological surgery residency at the University of Texas under Dr. Kemp Clark, who was Chief of Neurological Surgery at that time. During this period of residency, he became very closely associated with Dr. Duke Samson, who was already a dominant cerebrovascular neurosurgeon. During residency two fellowships were pursued; the first was at the National Hospital, Institute of Neurology at the University of London at Queen's Square, and the second fellowship was at the University of Western Ontario under Dr. Charles Drake. Following the completion of residency training, he accepted a position on the faculty with the Department of Neurological Surgery at UT Southwestern and focused academic and clinical activities in the realm of cerebrovascular disease. Basic laboratory studies were coordinated with clinical research activities specifically dealing with cerebral ischemia, ischemic brain protection, cerebral vasospasm, and auto-regulatory disturbances associated with vascular malformations.

Dr. Batjer became Professor of Neurological Surgery in 1993. In 1995, he assumed the position of Chief of the Division of Neurological Surgery and Director of the Neurosurgical Residency Training Program at Northwestern University Medical School in Chicago. In addition, Dean Harvey Colten named Dr. Batjer the Director of the Feinberg Clinical Neuroscience Research Institute at Northwestern in 1997. In 1998, he became the Michael J. Marchese Professor and Chairman of the Department of Neurological Surgery. He has achieved numerous academic awards during his professional career including multiple endowed lectureships, outstanding teacher awards, and being repeatedly listed in Best Doctors in America. Dr. Batjer has served as visiting professor at over 25 institutions world wide and currently serves on the editorial boards of Neurosurgery, Perspectives in Neurological Surgery, and as ad hoc reviewer for a dozen other scientific publications. In addition, he serves as co-editor for Techniques in Neurosurgery with Dr. Chris Loftus. He has published over 175 scientific papers and chapters, and four books.

Current executive and board appointments include the Executive Council of the Joint Section of Cerebrovascular Surgery, the Board of Trustees of the Foundation for International Education in Neurological Surgery (FIENS), the Board of Directors of the Interurban Neurosurgical Society, the Executive Council of the Society of University Neurosurgeons and the Executive Committee and Board of Directors of Northwestern Medical Faculty Foundation. In addition, he is currently Vice President of the Society of University Neurosurgeons.

In 1990 Dr. Batjer became very active with the Congress of Neurological Surgeons being named to its Executive Committee. Subsequently, he has chaired numerous committees culminating in service as Scientific Program Chairman in 1993, and Annual Meeting Chairman the following year. In 1995 he became Secretary of the CNS and was elected President-elect in 1997.

Dr. Batjer's personal life took a major turn for the better in 1989 when he and Janet Elieen Wright became married. The Batjers have four wonderful daughters after being visited by new twins in August 1998. The current list is as follows: Hannah 9, Devon 7, twins Ashley and Hunter 7 months. If the Batjers can achieve success it will be in somehow striking a balance between the demands of professional life and the critical importance of family.