John N. Whitaker, MD (1940-2001) | Adolescent Medicine | JAMA Neurology | JAMA Network
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January 2002

John N. Whitaker, MD (1940-2001)

Arch Neurol. 2002;59(1):122. doi:10.1001/archneur.59.1.122

John N. Whitaker, MD, died August 29, 2001, in Birmingham, Ala, from injuries suffered during a bicycle race in Tennessee on August 25, 2001. Dr Whitaker was a professor and the chair of the Department of Neurology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham and president of the University of Alabama at Birmingham's Health Services Foundation. Neurology has lost a great leader, clinician, teacher, and investigator. He possessed that rare blend and balance of intelligence and intuitive thinking, with qualities of generosity and thoughtfulness. His gentlemanly and kindly demeanor were admired and appreciated by all.

Dr Whitaker received his undergraduate degree (magna cum laude) from Hendrix College (Conway, Ark) and his medical degree from the University of Tennessee College of Medicine (Memphis) in 1965. Following a medical internship at City of Memphis Hospitals, he obtained neurology training at Albert Einstein College of Medicine, finishing in June 1970. He then served as a clinical associate in the Medical Neurology Branch at the National Institutes of Health (Bethesda, Md) before joining the University of Minnesota (Minneapolis) as an assistant professor. He was on the neurology staff of the University of Tennessee in Memphis from 1973 to 1985 and served as chairman of the Department of Neurology at that institution from 1983 to 1985. Since 1985, he served as professor and chair of the Department of Neurology at the University of Alabama at Birmingham. There he also had appointments in the Department of Cell Biology and Physiology and the Department of Biophysics.