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Remembering Dr. Robert Jaffe

It is with great sadness that the SRI announces the passing of Robert Jaffe, MD, a Professor Emeritus or obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive sciences, and physiology, and Past President of SRI (1975-1976).

Dr. Jaffe received his medical degree from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, in 1957. He then became a USPHS Postdoctoral Fellow in Endocrinology at the University of Colorado from 1958 to 1959 before completing his obstetrics and gynecology residency at the same institution in 1963. To further his understanding of reproduction physiology, he served as a NIH Postdoctoral Fellow in Reproductive Endocrinology at the Karolinska Sjukhuset, Stockholm, Sweden, under the mentorship of the world-renowned Egon Diczfalusy, MD, from 1963-1964.

With an extensive clinical and scientific background, Dr. Jaffe quickly rose from assistant professor to professor of obstetrics and gynecology, at the University of Michigan from 1964 to 1973 and subsequently became chair of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, at the University of California, San Francisco, a position he held for 22 years. At UCSF, Dr. Jaffe built an academic obstetrics and gynecology department with a robust research program. He established the Reproductive Endocrinology Center, now called the Center for Reproductive Sciences. During this time, he also was director of the Center for Reproductive Sciences in that department and received sabbatical fellowships at the INSERM Laboratory in Paris in 1981 and the Peptide Biology Laboratory at the Salk Institute in La Jolla, Calif., in 1989.

Together with Dr. Larry Longo (Past President of SRI, 1982-1983) and other SRI members, Dr. Jaffe established the Reproductive Scientist Development Program in 1988 to develop a cadre of reproductive physician-scientists across all specialties. Since then, Dr. Jaffe served as mentor for over 100 of these scholars. Notably, 90% have of RSDP scholars have remained in academia; thus, his impact on the field of reproductive science is a lasting legacy.

His friends and many colleagues at SRI will sorely miss Dr. Jaffe. On behalf of the SRI, we would like to extend our condolences to his family, friends, and close colleagues.

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