Karen W. Green, MD, the 2014 recipient of the Chancellor’s Medal for Clinical Excellence, is professor emeritus of obstetrics and gynecology at the University of Massachusetts Medical School. She received her medical degree from the University of North Carolina School of Medicine and her postgraduate medical residency training at the Magee Women’s Hospital, University of Pittsburgh.
Attracted by the opportunity to start a new division in a relatively new department, she came to Worcester 38 years ago, direct from a fellowship at the University of California San Diego, and spent her entire career practicing maternal fetal medicine at UMass Memorial.
A devoted, highly praised, nationally recognized pioneer, Dr. Green was the first perinatologist to be recruited to our medical school and the only full-time Ob/Gyn faculty member at Memorial Hospital. Maternal fetal medicine was a recently established subspecialty, and the NICU was only two years old. Dr. Green was instrumental in the building of high-risk obstetrics in our community and made a major impact on the treatment of substance abuse in pregnancy. She was a forerunner in the care of HIV patients.
Her commitment to providing her patients with the highest quality clinical care while recognizing the importance of clinical research to better understand disease and, ultimately, to develop treatments and preventions is impressive. Among the first to believe in and practice “team science,” she was key to our institution’s success in defining timing of the transmission of HIV and developing Nevirapine for use in pregnant women.
Dr. Green has a remarkable reputation for clinical and educational service to patients and learners alike. Known as a bridge-builder, her professional instincts and influence have been felt throughout our region. Described as a physician who helps her patients to “appreciate the miracle and grace” of their pregnancies, she cared for thousands of mothers and their infants throughout her distinguished career.
Karen W. Green, MD, has worn the white coat with dignity while recognizing the privilege in so doing.