The Amazing Dr. Clarke
"Where do you shop for a gift for the heart and soul of our Department? You can't find a store that sells that kind of gift," stated Diane B. Wayne, Vice-Chair, Education, during the commemorative ceremony held for Dr. John Clarke on March 11. Instead, the Department of Medicine named the 13-742 Feinberg conference room the Clarke Conference Room to honor Dr. Clarke's commitment to medical student and resident education.
Dr. John T. Clarke - FSM graduate '68, and a cherished teacher and mentor, recently decided to leave Chicago and move closer to his grandchildren after having worked at Northwestern for over four decades. Faculty members, residents, and students said goodbye to Dr. Clarke during a special commemorative ceremony held during firm conference on Thursday, March 11th.
The conference was lead by Dr. Robert Hirschtick, who has been a colleague and a friend to Dr. Clarke for many years. In his recent article published in JAMA, Dr. Hirschtick talks about his relationship with the professor emeritus in terms of the impact factor that a physician -educator can have by inspiring learners to imspire others.
"Our hospital has several but, in my life, one in particular has impacted me time and again. Clad in his trademark plaid pants, he taught me how to talk with patients. At the bedside, he taught me to appreciate the subtleties of the second heart sound and the jugular veins. In the hallway, he taught me that being nice isn’t always the best way to advocate for one’s patients against the powers-that-be (this from the nicest physician I know). He showed me and many other learners how to observe, how to act, and how to interact. We in turn have imparted these teachings to subsequent learners. Thus, Dr Plaid Pants has a huge impact factor that extends over time to students here, there, and everywhere."
The event culminated with the installation of a plaque naming the Feinberg 13-742 conference room the Clarke Conference Room. Dr. Clarke's personality, intellegence, compassion for patients and plaid pants will be thoroughly missed by all. We wish him best of luck in his future endeavors and look forward to welcoming back to Northwestern whenever he and his family are in Chicago.