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This spring we learned of the passing of David Remember Baker, J.D., son of Dr. Roger Denio Baker, inaugural Chair of the UAB Department of Pathology. The Baker family has long supported the department and we are saddened to learn of Mr. Baker's passing.

The Baker family established the Roger Denio Baker Prize in memory of Dr. Roger Denio Baker, who was the first full-time faculty member of the new four-year medical school, the University of Alabama School of Medicine, having been hired by the new Dean, Dr. Roy R. Kracke, also a pathologist.

Roger BakerRoger Denio Baker, M.D., inaugural Chair, UAB Department of Pathology

Dr. Baker was a 1928 cum laude graduate of the Harvard Medical School, followed by training in Pathology at Johns Hopkins University. He thus became responsible for establishing, leading, and growing the Pathology faculty of the University of Alabama School of Medicine from 1944 to 1952, at which time he left UAB for Duke University. The Department initially had five attending pathologists as well as three residents. One of the attending pathologists was Dr. J. A. Cunningham, founder of the Cunningham Pathology Group in Birmingham, still in existence to this day. Dr. Roger Baker’s influence on pathology at UAB is deep and far-reaching.

In the year 2000, family and friends of Dr. Roger Baker (1902-1994), in conjunction with the Department, established the Roger Denio Baker Prize in Anatomical Pathology, which is awarded annually to the resident or rellow who exhibits the greatest skill in the disciplines of Anatomical Pathology. The prize was first awarded in 2002, and until this year has been presented annually by David Baker. Mr. Baker passed away on March 20, 2020, and we will all miss the excitement he expressed at seeing his father’s legacy continue. Current faculty who received the Roger Denio Baker Prize include Dr. Shi Wei (Section Head of Surgical Pathology) and Dr. Brandi McCleskey (Forensic Pathologist).

DavidBakerDavid Remember Baker, J.D.

David Baker's enthusiasm for his father's legacy at UAB Pathology was evident in his presence at annual year-end receptions for trainees, where he distributed the award in his father's name. He was known for his keen mind, his generosity, his love of art and music, and his obsession with bow ties. On June 25 his wife Lois Baker along with family and friends hosted a memorial service via Zoom, which was attended by more than 100 participants who gathered to fondly remember Mr. Baker.

Read his obituary on Al.com here: https://obits.al.com/obituaries/birmingham/obituary.aspx?n=david-remember-baker&pid=195810221.