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University of Iowa Foundation News Release

Sept. 30, 2003

Contributors' Gifts Endow Steindler Chair At University Of Iowa

Forty-four years after his death in 1959, the legacy of Arthur Steindler, M.D., still influences medical research, clinical practice and health care policy at the University of Iowa, throughout the state of Iowa and far beyond. During his 37-year UI career (1913-1949), Steindler was the first and longtime head of the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery (now Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation), and was the driving force behind the creation and growth of Children's Hospital of Iowa and Iowa's pioneering Indigent Care Program.

Now through their gifts to the UI Foundation, a group of Steindler's family, friends, colleagues, students and current UI medical leaders have enhanced and ensured the continuation of that legacy by creating the endowed Dr. Arthur Steindler Chair in Orthopaedic Surgery.

"Creation of this endowed chair in memory of Dr. Steindler is welcome and appropriate," said Joseph A. Buckwalter, M.D., head of the UI Department of Orthopaedics and Rehabilitation. "It honors one of the most important contributors to the growth and development of the entire university. For generations to come, the existence of this chair, and the significant support that it signals, will help attract the very best researchers, teachers and clinicians in orthopaedics to the University of Iowa and support their academic activities.

"Patients in Iowa and worldwide stand to gain from the education of future orthopaedic surgeons and advances in orthopaedics and rehabilitation treatments and procedures that this chair will help make possible," Buckwalter added. "All of us at the UI are grateful to the generous donors who turned this worthy idea into a reality."

Born in Czechoslovakia in 1878, Arthur Steindler immigrated to the United States in 1907 after completing medical training at the University of Vienna. Before coming to the UI in 1913, Steindler practiced at the Chicago Home for Crippled Children and taught at the Drake Medical School in Des Moines.

Steindler was instrumental in the passage of two Iowa laws that significantly altered the state's health care landscape: the 1915 Perkins Act, which authorized state payment for medical treatment at UI Hospitals and Clinics for children younger than 16, and the 1919 Haskell-Claus Act, which extended state-supported medical care at UI Hospitals to all indigent adults. When construction on the new Children's Hospital of Iowa was completed in 1920, Steindler became chief surgeon and was put in charge of the growing orthopaedic surgery service. When the Children's Hospital of Iowa moved to newer facilities in 1978, the original building was renamed the Steindler Building.

Steindler was acknowledged by his peers as a pioneer in clinical and research advances in orthopaedic surgery and rehabilitation. He also championed the incorporation of an emphasis on basic sciences and the natural history of diseases into orthopaedics education for medical students and in the training of orthopaedics residents. His research studies and medical textbooks were widely published and used by generations of medical students and residents nationwide.

The contributors who made the Steindler Chair possible are:
-- Ilse L. Barteau of San Francisco, Calif.
-- Richard A. Brand of Philadelphia, Pa.
-- Joseph A. Buckwalter IV and Kathleen C. Buckwalter of Iowa City
-- Herbert G. Cohen and Rhoda Weiskopf Cohen of New York, N.Y.
-- Lewis Cohen of Huntington Woods, Mich.
-- Dr. J. L. Ehrenhaft and Jean Ehrenhaft of Iowa City
-- Gloria J. Gelman of Iowa City, in honor of her husband, Webster B. Gelman, M.D., who was Steindler's partner in medical practice
-- Thomas H. Gelman and Rebecca Ann Gay Gelman of Iowa City, in honor of Thomas's father, Webster B. Gelman, M.D.
-- Edgar O. Hicks III and Elizabeth A. Hicks of Eau Claire, Wis., in memory of Dr. Edgar O. Hicks II
-- The Orthopaedic Research and Education Foundation of Rosemont, Ill.
-- Martin J. Steindler and Joan L. Steindler of Downers Grove, Ill.
-- Thomas P. Steindler of McLean, Va.

A minimum of $1.5 million to $2 million is required to establish an endowed chair in the UI Carver College of Medicine.

The Steindler Chair was created as part of the UI's $850 million comprehensive campaign, which will run through 2005 and is being conducted under the guidance of the UI Foundation. Named "Good. Better. Best. Iowa: The Campaign to Advance Our Great University," the seven-year effort is raising private funds to help launch a variety of initiatives across the university, substantially increase the number of UI scholarships and endowed faculty positions, support new educational and research facilities, build the UI's endowment and fund outreach and service programs to benefit Iowans.

The UI Foundation is acknowledged by the UI as a preferred channel for private contributions that benefit all areas of the university. For more information about the "Good. Better. Best. Iowa" campaign, visit its web site at

STORY SOURCE: UI Foundation, P.O. Box 4550, Iowa City, Iowa 52244-4550

CONTACTS: Media: Sheila Baldwin, 319-335-3305, ext. 823,; Writer: Forrest Meyer

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