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Dr. Dennis Wood Memorial Service

Memorial Service to be Held from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. in Morse Auditorium

A memorial service honoring Dennis L. Wood, M.D., will be held from 12 p.m. to 2 p.m. today in the Harvey Morse Auditorium. Dr. Wood, who was Clinical Chief of the Department of Surgery, died Dec. 21, 2006 at his Los Angeles home. He was 49 years old.

"Dr. Wood touched people's lives as a surgeon, friend and colleague," said Tom Gordon, CEO of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Group. "He brought energy, joy and a sense of humor to all of his interactions and connected with people everywhere he went. He gave much joy to children with his magic performances. He shared his love of the arts with all of us and was always most interested in learning about the interests and passions of his friends and colleagues."

Dr. Wood graduated from Stanford University with honors in 1979 and the University of California San Diego Medical School with honors in 1983. He completed his general surgery training at Cedars-Sinai in 1989 and went on to establish a private general surgery practice in Beverly Hills. In addition to being Clinical Chief of the Department of Surgery, he served on numerous hospital committees and was recently chosen to sit on the Board of Directors for the Cedars-Sinai Health Associates. Dr. Wood was awarded the Golden Apple Award for excellence in teaching young surgeons in 2001.

"Dennis was my chief resident when I was an intern," said David Kulber, M.D., vice clinical chief of plastic surgery. "He was my role model of what we all should aspire to be -- kind and compassionate to others, dedicated to his profession, his friends and the Cedars-Sinai community. He was an excellent surgeon and beloved friend and knowing him has made me a better person. He will be missed but never forgotten."

Dr. Wood began working with the Cedars-Sinai Medical Group in 1995. "He was a vital and greatly respected member of the Advisory Board of the Board of Directors of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Group," Gordon said. "He served on the Investment Committee of the Medical Group and championed the adoption and implementation of a new electronic medical record system as a member of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Group EMR Steering Committee."

"Cedars-Sinai is a tremendous place because of superb individuals like Dennis," said Paul Silka, M.D., Chief of Staff. "We can only be buoyed from this tragic loss by the fact that Dennis was able to give so much to his patients and to the medical center during his all-too-short career. In the last year, serving as Clinical Chief of Surgery, Dennis contributed at a new level and was a gentleman and captain of several important quality and safety initiatives. These accomplishments, added to his clinical and teaching achievements, demonstrated what a complete physician he had become. He was inspirational to so many of our medical staff."

"Dr. Dennis Wood was an extraordinary physician," said Linda Burnes Bolton, Dr.PH., R.N., F.A.A.N., vice president and chief nursing officer. "He truly believed in our physician-nurse collaborative, and his willingness to give freely of his time and presence helped to lead the successful changes in interdisciplinary practice at Cedars-Sinai. He contributed to the Transforming Care at the Bedside program and was a recipient of an award from the inpatient surgical nursing staff. My nursing colleagues and I will truly miss him."

"Dr. Wood and I first worked together when he was a surgical resident on our floor," said Peachy Hain, R.N., unit manager on 8 South. "He believed in getting nurses' input, doing bedside rounds with nurses and he always listened. He was passionate about his patients and was very active in patient-centered care. He volunteered so much of his time and was willing to speak to other physicians to get them involved too. We would often talk in the middle of the night about our projects because they meant so much to him. I will miss him and the time we spent together."

Dr. Wood is survived by his parents, Everett and Rosezella Wood of Marshalltown, Iowa; two sisters, Judy Hill and Joye Welsch of Glenview, Illinois; two nephews, Jeff Hill and Dr. Chris Welsch; a niece, Jennifer Laible, and his grand nieces and nephew.

Donations can be made to: "The Dennis Wood, M.D Memorial Fund for Physician and Resident Education" through the Department of Community Relations.