DEDICATION TO ARTHUR L. BOLAND, M.D.
Bernard R. Bach JR., M.D., Director of Sports Medicine, Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery,
Rush-Presbyterian-St. Luke's Medical Ccenter
This issue of The Orthopaedic Journal at Harvard Medical School is dedicated to Arthur
L. Boland, M.D. When I was approached to write this dedication, I felt incredibly honored to
acknowledge a mentor, a close personal friend, and someone whose impact on my life has been
second only to that of my parents.
Arthur L. Boland, M.D. was born on November 3, 1935, and raised in Lynn, Massachusetts.
Attending Lynn English High School, Art was a three-sport athlete, participating in football
(co-captain), baseball and track. His outstanding academic and athletic prowess resulted in his
acceptance to Cornell University, where his love of sports continued. During his four years at
Cornell (1953-57), Art captained the 1956 football team, receiving first team "All-Ivy" and "All-
East" accolades. His track career was equally stellar. He was captain of the 1957 team, a winning
member of the 4 x 220 event at the prestigious Penn Relays, and was the 100 and 200 yard Ivy
League champion. He received the 1957 Cornell "Most Outstanding Athlete" award and in 1980 was elected to the Cornell "Hall of
Fame". I mention these accolades because Art is so humble he would never mention them himself!
He graduated from Cornell University Medical College in 1961, completed his internship at the New York Hospital, and subsequently
entered military service as a Commanding Officer of the 731 Medical Detachment, 7th army training area in Germany. After
completing his training in the Harvard Combined Orthopaedic Residency Program from 1965-68, Art served as Chief Resident at
Children's Hospital Medical Center from 1968-9. Between 1972 and 1981, Art was in private practice with Drs. Bill Kermond and
Wendell Pierce. He had an appointment as Clinical Instructor during the years of 1969 to 1984.
Dr. Clement Sledge recruited Art to the Brigham and Women's Hospital in 1979, the year I graduated from medical school and
began my internship. I recall how excited Dr. Sledge was to have Art on staff! In the fall of 1978, I followed Tim Hosea's footsteps
and spent a one-month senior medical school elective with Art. The month rotation with Drs. Sledge, Lowell, and Boland was the
highlight of my medical school years. I remember many hours spent with Art down at the Harvard fieldhouse, where he stoked my
fire for a career in sports medicine. In a one year time period, he impacted the career directions of Hosea, Stephen O'Brien, David
St. Pierre, and me. This elective, initiated in 1977, resulted in six to eight medical students rotating with Art annually. Many of us
saw firsthand Art's dedication, compassion, and enthusiasm for athletes in the Dillon fieldhouse or on the football field. He was
appointed Chief Surgeon to the Harvard Department of Athletics in 1969 and served in this position until his recent retirement from
surgical practice this past fall. In the fall of 1986, Art moved from the Brigham to the Massachusetts General Hospital, where he
continues to see patients. I recall Dr. Henry Mankin once confiding to me that Art was his "best" appointment!
Art has been the head orthopaedic surgeon for Harvard Athletics since 1975, when he took over for Thomas B. Quigley, M.D.
Sports medicine at Harvard has seen only a handful of "team physicians"—Augustus Thorndike, M.D., Quigley, Boland, and now
Mark E. Steiner, M.D. The medical care for Harvard athletes has been nothing short of spectacular. Dr. Boland has nurtured a team
of caring and competent physicians during his 27 years as team orthopaedist. In addition, the complexities of medical care have
dramatically changed during the last quarter century. Title IX has resulted in an increase in the number of female athletes and
teams. Currently, Harvard has 41 intercollegiate varsity team sports. Art has coordinated and improved care in many arenas; the
quality of care provided to the Harvard athletes is superb!
Art is a nationally and internationally recognized figure in Sports Medicine. He has lectured extensively and given over 300
presentations during his career. Art commands an incredible amount of respect because of his scholarly, thoughtful, and respectful
approach to the specialty. He is a member of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the American Orthopaedic Society
for Sports Medicine (AOSSM), the International Society of Arthroscopy, Knee Surgery, and Orthopaedic Sports Medicine (ISAKOS),
and a founding member of the Herodicus Society. He is the ultimate "team" player, working tirelessly on many committees. He
has provided yeoman efforts --serving on the Outcomes, International Knee Documentation, Membership, Program, Council of
Delegates, and Budget and Finance Committees-- and has served on the AOSSM "Concussion" consensus task force.
In 2001, he received the prestigious "Mr. Sports Medicine" award from the AOSSM and served as a "Godfather" for the AOSSM
Pacific Rim Traveling Fellows, mentoring 3 young sports medicine physicians while touring Singapore, Malaysia, Hong Kong, and
Japan during a very unsettling time---the tragedies of September 11th interrupted the completion of their tour. He has been president
of the AOSSM (1994-5), Herodicus Sports Medicine Society (1981-2), and has recently been elected as the only non-Harvard
alumnus of the Quigley Society to serve as its president.
Art met his best friend and wife, Jane Macknight, while attending medical college and they were married after his third year. He
is a devoted husband and father. He has four children --Michael, Mary, Margaret, and Artie-- and four grandchildren. Art's family
life has been a central theme from which I personally learned the importance of striving to have a balanced life. My wife, Elizabeth,
and I have had numerous occasions to visit, dine, attend meetings, and vacation with the Bolands. One of our favorite memories
was rafting the Middle Fork of the Salmon River in Idaho--Art was the only attending among several former residents, including
Don Roberts, Ken Kurica, Charlie Brown, and others.
As residents, we are a synthesis of our attendings and mentors. A warm, caring gentleman, a raconteur of Harvard athletic
history and sports medicine, a surgeon with superb judgment and technique, a dedicated sports medicine physician, a scholarly
intellectual and bibliophile, Art is one of the least imposing "giants" in sports medicine. He is the type of person you can meet
for the first time and after fifteen minutes feel you have known him for years. He has no pretensions, is slow to anger, has never in
my years demonstrated arrogance (he missed that class in medical school), and I have never heard him say an unkind word about
another physician. In my opinion, he is what being a physician, surgeon, and sports medicine doctor is all about.
Thanks, Art, for being a shining beacon for those of us who have been privileged to be associated with you. You have impacted
a generation of residents, fellows, attendings, and colleagues who have benefited from the strengths of your character and professionalism.