Cartwright Lecture

The Cartwright lectureship was established in the late 1870s through a bequest from Benjamin A. Cartwright of Newark, New Jersey, to the Alumni Association of the Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons (VP&S). In his will, Mr. Cartwright stated that he wished to institute a course of lectures "modeled after the Lettsonian or Croonian Lectures of England"—formal occasions that featured important summaries of existing medical knowledge or, in some cases, reports of cutting-edge investigations in medicine or surgery. The lectures were given regularly from 1881 until World War I, at which time they were discontinued indefinitely. 

2017 Cartwright lecture audience member asks question.

In 1928 the VP&S Alumni Association transferred the Cartwright fund directly to the college, with the recommendation that the bequest remain untouched until the fund could accrue enough to support a lecture series of the highest quality and distinction, in keeping with what Mr. Cartwright had originally indicated and envisioned. Five decades later—and nearly a century after Mr. Cartwright's passing—this longtime goal was finally realized with the reinstatement of a new and improved lecture series in 1974.

The Cartwright Lecture series has since become a major forum for the exchange of scientific knowledge, attracting scholars, researchers, and clinicians from the world's premier medical, scientific, educational, and policymaking institutions. Past speakers and participants include top officials from the National Academy of Sciences and the National Institutes of Health, a United States senator, and numerous Nobel laureates. 

Most Recent Cartwright Lecture 




Past Cartwright Lecturers

2022 – Sundeep Khosla, MD, Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science

2021 – David J. Skorton, MD, Association of American Medical Colleges

2020 – Salim Abdool Karim, PhD, Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health

2019 – Kenneth C. Frazier, JD, Merck & Co., Inc.

2018 – Joachim Frank, PhD, Columbia University Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons

2017 – Robert J. Lefkowitz, MD, Duke University Medical Center; Howard Hughes Medical Institute

2015 – Helen Hobbs, MD, University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas

2014 – Richard W. Tsien, DPhil, NYU School of Medicine

2013 – Sydney Brenner, PhD, CH, FRS, Salk Institute

2012 – David D. Ho, MD, The Rockefeller University

2010 – David M. Oshinsky, PhD, University of Texas at Austin

2008 – Bert Sakmann, MD, Max-Planck Institute for Medical Research

2004 – Sir Paul Nurse, The Rockefeller University

2003 – Dr. Susumu Tonegawa, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

2002 – Dr. Elaine Fuchs, University of Chicago

2001 – Dr. Elizabeth Blackburn, University of California at San Francisco

2000 – Dr. Judah Folkman, Harvard Medical School

1997 – Senator Daniel Patrick Moynihan, State of New York

1996 – Dr. Norman E. Shumway, Stanford University

1995 – Dr. Bruce M. Alberts, National Academy of Sciences

1993 – Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, National Institutes of Health

1992 – Dr. Joseph L. Goldstein, University of Texas, Dallas

1991 – Dr. W. French Anderson, National Institutes of Health

1990 – Dr. Daniel E. Koshland, Jr., University of California, Berkeley

1989 – Dr. David Baltimore, The Whitehead Institute

1988 – Dr. Luc Montagnier, Pasteur Institute

1987 – Dr. Michael J. Bishop, Univ. of California, San Francisco

1986 – Sir Bernard Katz, University College, London

1985 – Dr. George Palade, Yale University

1984 – Dr. Matthew Stanley Meselson, Harvard University

1983 – Dr. Arnold Relman, New England Journal of Medicine

1982 – Dr. D. Carleton Gajdusek, National Institutes of Health

1981 – Dr. Joshua Lederberg, Rockefeller University

1980 – Sir Peter Medawar, Clinical Research Center, Harrow

1979 – Dr. DeWitt Stetten, Jr., National Institutes of Health

1978 – Dr. John R. Hogness, University of Washington

1977 – Dr. George L. Engel, University of Rochester

1976 – Sir George White Pickering, Oxford University

1975 – Dr. Charles B. Huggins, University of Chicago

1974 – Dr. Paul B. Beeson, Oxford University

1916 – Prof. Richard Mills Pearce, Philadelphia

1912 – Dr. Ludwig Aschoff, Freiburg, Germany

1910 – Dr. Adolf Magnus Levy, University of Berlin

1908 – James Ewing, Cornell University

1906 – Baron Kanehiro Takaki, Surgeon General, Japanese Navy

1904 – Baron Kanehiro Takaki, Surgeon General, Japanese Navy

1902 – Dr. Richard Cabot, Boston

1900 – Prof. John G. Curtis, Columbia University

1898 – Prof. William W. Keen, Jefferson Medical College

1896 – Prof. George H. Huntington, Columbia University

1894 – Prof. Russell H. Chittenden, Yale University

1892 – Prof. Henry Fairfield Osborne, Columbia University

1890 – Dr. John S. Billings, United States Army

1888 – Prof. William H. Welch, Johns Hopkins University

1886 – Prof. William Osler, University of Pennsylvania

1884 – Prof. Burt G. Wilder, Cornell University

1883 – Prof. W.T. Belfield, Rush Medical Colleg e, Chicago

1882 – Prof. John C. Dalton, College of Physicians and Surgeons

1881 – Prof. Robert Bartholow, Jefferson Medical College

Photos from past Cartwright Lectures

CUIMC Faculty, staff and students with current CUIMC email accounts: you can access the photo album via Microsoft Office 365 OneDrive

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For Non-CUIMC affiliates: please email your request to: