FORT WORTH, Texas—The University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth has recognized Elmer Baum, D.O., a retired Austin physician, by giving him its highest honor — the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine’s Founders Medal.
The honor was presented at the annual awards ceremony of the Texas Osteopathic Medical Association June 7. The ceremony was held in Arlington as part of TOMA’s annual conference.
"Dr. Baum has repeatedly demonstrated his dedication to the profession," said Ronald Blanck, D.O., president of the UNT Health Science Center. "His advocacy opened the doors to osteopathic education in Texas. He was instrumental to the development of our own Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine and our continued success as an academic health center."
In the mid 1960s, Dr. Baum worked with then Governor Preston Smith to obtain private scholarships for osteopathic students in Texas. Following this, the state of Texas approved general appropriations for the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine and provided initial financing for building the college. Shortly thereafter, the Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine became a Texas state college under the University of North Texas system.
Among his many other honors, Dr. Baum received the prestigious Distinguished Service Certificate award in 1999 from the American Osteopathic Association. Some of his other awards include the General Practitioner of the Year in 1958 and the Distinguished Service Award in 1995 from TOMA.
Dr. Baum has served as a member of the Bureau of Insurance, chairman of the Council on Federal Health Programs, a committee member of the Council on Federal Health Programs, and Vice President of the American Osteopathic Association. Dr. Baum has been a member of the White House Conference on Health, and chairman of the Bureau of Public Education on Health. On the state level, Dr. Baum was a member of the Texas State Board of Health for over 18 years.
The Founders Medal, awarded in honor of the health science center’s medical school founders — George Luibel, D.O., Carl E. Everett, D.O. and the late D.D. Beyer, D.O. — has been presented since 1978. The honor is awarded to "deserving individuals in recognition of significant contributions to healthcare and/or osteopathic medical education."
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