Peter Kussin honored with Duke University Presidential Award

Tuesday, February 25, 2020

Peter Kussin, MD, professor of medicine in the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine, is the recipient of the 2020 Duke Presidential Award. Dr. Kussin was presented with the award by Duke University President Vincent Price at a ceremony on Feb. 25, 2020.

Kussin was nominated by Kathleen Cooney, MD, chair of the Department of Medicine, and Patty Lee, MD, chief of the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine. They collected numerous letters of support and admiring comments illustrating Dr. Kussin's compassion, humility, and the highest standards of excellence. The Duke University Presidential Awards recognize individuals and teams who best demonstrate the values that define and shape Duke as an institution.

Among those supporting the nomination, were faculty and fellows from the Division of Pulmonary, Allergy, and Critical Care Medicine, the Duke Hubert-Yeargan Center for Global Health, and the Duke Internal Medicine Residency Program. The statements of support came from colleagues who have worked with Kussin over the course of his 35 years at Duke and from trainees whom he has mentored, taught and inspired:

"At Duke, he taught me, along with my co-residents and co-fellows much of what we know about medical physiology, nuances of diadnosis, and management of common and uncommon diseases. Equally as important, he loves and embraces medical ethics and delivery of justice through medicine, and he has taught us to do the same, always advocating for the patient. He simply encompasses excellence as a clinical educator," wrote Lindsay Boole, MD, MPH, pulmonary and critical care fellow, 2016-2019.

"He challenges trainees at every level to be better diagnosticians, more compassionate physicians, and to expand their views of what it means to provide truly patient-centered care," wrote Bill McManigle, MD, Duke internal medicine resident and current pulmonary and critical care fellow.

"His advocacy, compassion and impact stretch far beyond the walls of Duke Hospital," wrote Rebecca Lumsden, MD, internal medicine resident and Global Health Pathway resident. "As a mentor and advisor to countless trainees, both American and Kenyan, he has not only instilled in us a passion for Kenya, but a sense of compassion for humanity."

"Clearly Peter has had a deep impact on the future of medicine through his dedication to teaching both locally and globally, but, more so, he has led by example throughout his career, illustrating compassion, humility, and the highest standards of excellence," said Dr. Cooney.

We asked some of the supporters to stop in and tell us about Dr. Kussin. Listen here.

The Department of Medicine will honor Dr. Kussin at Medicine Grand Rounds on February 28. Read about all of the recipients.