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Dr. Thomas R. Kinney, 1944-2020

Friday, May 29, 2020 - 12:00

Dr. Thomas R. KinneyThomas R. Kinney, MD, Duke University School of Medicine Wilburt C. Davison Distinguished Professor of Pediatrics and Associate Chair Emeritus in the Department of Pediatrics, died May 25, 2020. 

Dr. Kinney was certified by the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP) in General Pediatrics and Pediatric Hematology-Oncology. He had been a volunteer with the ABP since 1992, serving on the Certifying Exam Committee and the Long-Range Planning Committee.

Renowned as a pediatric hematologist, Dr. Kinney focused much of his clinical research efforts on sickle cell disease. He was a leader in the NIH-funded multi-institutional collaborative study that began in 1978 to define the natural history of sickle cell disease. He also played a pivotal role in the implementation and monitoring of the North Carolina Neonatal Hemoglobinopathy Screening Program. In 1993, he served as co-chair of a federal panel convened by the Agency for Health Care Policy and Research to develop guidelines for sickle cell screening programs. 

Colleagues remember him for his kindness as well as his contributions to the field of pediatrics.

“I have fond memories of Dr. Kinney — or TRK, as he was affectionately known at Duke,” said Suzanne K. Woods, MD, ABP Executive Vice President, Credentialing and Initial Certification. “He was my pediatrics program director when I started residency (at Duke) and we worked together in different capacities over the next 20 years. His contributions to the field of pediatrics are innumerable and his tireless efforts and spirit to improve the lives of children will have a lasting impact on many pediatricians, patients, and their families.” 

Dr. Kinney also was an organizer of one of the first summer camps in the nation for children with a wide variety of disabling conditions. 

He received the Excellence in Professionalism Award in 2015 and the Duke Medical Alumni Distinguished Faculty Award in 2013. He earned his MD from Duke in 1970.