Leadership Transition in the Kidney and Pancreas Transplant Program at UCLA

Gabriel M. Danovitch, MD, longtime medical director of the Kidney and Pancreas Transplant Program at UCLA will be retiring on June 30, 2023. Gabe, as all know him, was born in Cardiff, Wales, and received his medical degree from St. Bartholomew’s Hospital of the University of London. He completed his residency training in London and in Beersheba, Israel. He completed his nephrology fellowship training at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City. He joined the Department of Medicine at UCLA in 1979, and has led the Kidney and Pancreas Transplant Program since 1983. Under his leadership the renowned program has become one of the largest and most successful in the United States.

Gabe currently holds the John J. Kuiper Chair in Nephrology and Renal Transplantation at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA with the academic rank of distinguished professor of medicine. He is an internationally recognized authority on transplant immunosuppression, clinical transplant care, transplant ethics and public policy. He has published over 250 original articles and 50 book chapters. He has mentored generations of nephrologists and transplant physicians and is sought after as a teacher, lecturer, and clinician. He has served on the board of the American Society of Transplantation and the United Network for Organ Donation and is the past chair of its International Relations Committee. He served as secretary of The Transplantation Society and is a founding member of the Custodian Group of the Declaration of Istanbul on Organ Trafficking and Transplant Tourism. He is medical director of OneLegacy, the organ procurement agency of Southern California. His classic textbook, the “Handbook of Kidney Transplantation”, now in its sixth edition and translated into five languages, has become required reading for those entering the field. He has received multiple awards including UCLA’s prestigious Mellinkoff Award. In 2018 he was made an honorary fellow of the Royal College of Physicians of the United Kingdom (FRCP Hon) and in 2020 he received the Transplantation Award of the National Kidney Foundation, and the Lifetime Achievement Award of the American Society of Transplantation.

Gabe is blessed to be married to his wife, Nava, for over fifty years, and by their children Itai, Roy, and Yael, and their grandchildren Maya, Deivis, Alina, Noa, Emilie, and Julian. A celebration of his distinguished career will take place later this year.

We are pleased to announce that Elizabeth (Liz) Kendrick, MD has agreed to serve as the interim director of the Kidney and Pancreas Transplant Program upon Gabe's retirement, beginning July 2023. She will serve as interim director until a search for a permanent medical director is completed. Dr. Kendrick is a graduate of USC, completed her nephrology fellowship training at the University of Washington and her transplant fellowship with Gabe Danovitch, MD and the late Alan Wilkinson, MD in 1996-97. She served on the faculty of the University of Washington in Seattle and returned to UCLA in 2017. She is currently a clinical associate professor in the division of nephrology and a senior member of the clinical transplant nephrology team.

We are grateful to Dr. Kendrick for agreeing to take on this role and we wish her much success.

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