IN MEMORIAM: Professor Emeritus Antonio D’Alessandro

Beloved professor Dr. Antonio D’Alessandro passed away at age 89. He was actively involved in the department for over forty years and retained his connection long after as an emeritus professor.

Beloved professor Dr. Antonio D’Alessandro passed away at age 89. He was actively involved in the department for over forty years and retained his connection long after as an emeritus professor.

PROFESSOR EMERITUS ANTONIO D’ALESSANDRO, a treasured, long-time faculty member, passed away on February 28, 2016. He was 89.

In 1956, soon after completing his medical training in Buenos Aires, D’Alessandro entered Tulane’s MPH&TM program. The following year he became a doctoral student in parasitology under the mentorship of Dr. Paul Beaver, another legendary faculty member. He was appointed to Tulane’s tropical medicine faculty in 1961, a position he proudly held for the next 55 years.

Professor D’Alessandro made critical contributions to science and to Tulane during those years of service. From 1963 until 1985, he served as the chief of Tulane’s Scientific Technical Mission at the University del Valle, Cali, Colombia. As the field coordinator of this prestigious International Center for Medical Research and Training, supported by the National Institutes of Health, his leadeProfessor Emeritus Antonio D’Alessandro 2rship contributed significantly to Tulane’s research prominence in Latin America. He also served as acting chair of the department from 1985-1988 (when he moved to New Orleans and became an American citizen).

D’Alessandro’s research interests and numerous publications focused on a broad range of parasitic diseases, including amebiasis, Chagas disease, leishmaniasis, onchocerciasis, tapeworms and hydatid disease, filarial infections, and others. His body of scientific work was recognized by awards and service on prestigious national, regional, and global committees and boards.

Perhaps his greatest legacy was his captivating, charismatic role as a teacher of parasitology and tropical medicine. His abundant charm and wit, as well as his vast experience from the field and clinics, endeared him to his trainees and inspired many to pursue careers in tropical medicine. In addition to his grandchildren and great-Professor Emeritus Antonio D’Alessandro 3grandchildren, D’Alessandro also left behind a legion of friends and colleagues on many continents who will miss his unique combination of erudition and Old-World mannerisms, his memorable stories, and his museum-worthy collections of pre-Columbian and colonial artifacts from Latin America, principally Colombia.

Read memorials from some of Dr. D’Alessandro’s former colleagues and students. >>


About Tulane University SPHTM

Tulane's School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine is the oldest school of public health in the country and the only American school of tropical medicine. Our mission is to advance public health knowledge, promote health and well-being, and prevent disease, disability, and premature mortality. This is accomplished through academic excellence in education of public health professionals, rigorous scientific research of public health problems, creative partnerships to advance the practice of public health, and innovative service to the local, national, and international public health community.
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