Litman's Legacy

For more than four decades, George I. Litman, M.D.,FACC, FACP, has been a beloved teacher and mentor to students at NEOMED. Dr. Litman has been a treasured faculty member at NEOMED since the University first opened its doors to welcome its first class of future physicians. In NEOMED’s growing history, there have been few who have made such a significant impact on the University.

While Dr. Litman is stepping down as chair of internal medicine, he will continue to contribute to NEOMED by continuing his role as a faculty member, teaching students at Cleveland Clinic Akron General Coronary Care Unit, serving as chair of faculty appointment and promotions committee and continuing Professional Development Advisory Committee, serving as scholar in residence for the Office of Faculty Relations and Professional Development serve as chair emeritus for the department of internal medicine.

Dr. Litman touched many lives at NEOMED during the past several decades with his warmth, kindness and drive to help everyone around him. Many of his colleagues and students wished to share their thoughts on how they have been impacted and inspired by Dr. Litman.

“Dr. Litman has taught me and helped me from the time I was a junior medical student in 1982 to today. From teaching me cardiac exam skills as a young student-doctor to helping me navigate the political world of the hospital later, he the most important and kindest mentor I've had. He helped make me the doctor I am today. I will miss his guidance and advice for the rest of my career.” 

-Susan M. Ray, M.D., F.A.C.P., co-chair of nephrology and clinical professor of internal medicine 

“George is the consummate faculty member who constantly gives incredibly, particularly to our students, with little expected in return. A joy to work with and a wonderful role model!”  

-Jeffrey Susman, M.D., dean, College of Medicine and vice president for health affairs

“Shortly after I arrived at NEOMED more than 30 years ago, an overwhelmed and unsure newly-minted Ph.D., George Litman was one of the first people to befriend me. Since that time I have enjoyed not only his friendship but the incredible support he has given to our humanities and bioethics program. Anytime we look around NEOMED and see excellence in teaching, caregiving, and collegiality marked by integrity and great warmth, we see George Litman, and we know his presence will be felt for years to come.” 

-Delese Wear, Ph.D., professor of family and community medicine

“George Litman is the epitome of a compassionate, caring, clinically competent physician who has been a magnificent role model for every student whose life he has touched. His mentorship and friendship to students, faculty and staff can-not be matched! If you are lucky enough to be his friend, you are truly blessed! I love this man and will miss him terribly.”

-Margy Sanders, M.A., associate professor of family and community medicine

“I’ve had the honor to work for Dr Litman, who is such a wonderful clinician and teacher, for 10 years at Akron General. What I remember most from his various comments is this:  ‘Don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions.  They deserve to be asked and need to be answered.  Remember, at least someone else, or perhaps many, will be very glad you were bold enough to ask.’

I know NEOMED will miss his fantastic teaching abilities, along with his unyielding commitment to medicine and his medical students. There is none other like him.”

-Candace “Candy” Peters, administrative assistant, Cleveland Clinic Akron General

“George Litman is truly an amazing person, a wonderful physician, an inspirational mentor, and a remarkable friend! With a kind and gentle soul, he has touched the lives of so many of us. We are truly blessed to know him.”

-Barbara Palmisano, B.S.N., M.A., assistant professor of family and community medicine

“Dr. George Litman is simply one of the most accomplished, enjoyable and decent people with whom I have ever worked. I take great pleasure in having him as my colleague and most importantly, my dear friend! George is also an extraordinary golfer. I have never laughed more often and more enthusiastically than when I had the opportunity to play golf with him.”

-Rich Lewis, M.S., M.A., vice president, external affairs and secretary, board of trustees

“George is genuine, generous and caring. I have known Dr. Litman since coming to NEOMED and his number one priority has always been our students. When I think about the model faculty member and role model, I think of George.”

-Lindsey H. Loftus, M.Ed., senior development officer

“I don’t know that there are two words more synonymous with ‘Advancing Students’ than Dr. George Litman, a dedicated physician who does what is right for his patients and students and, most importantly, he is the person you want at your side when facing a crisis. Dr. Litman has been a supporter of all things important to NEOMED. I am proud to have him by my side to help our students shine brighter than ever.”

-Jay A. Gershen, D.D.S., Ph.D., president

“My life has changed in so many wonderful ways because of you. You encouraged me, you believed in me, and you never let me give up. You have taught me more about life in general than you will ever know. Your constant support in all aspects of my life is appreciated greatly. When I encounter a situation that I do not know how to handle, I think “What Would George Do?” and the solution doesn’t seem so difficult after all. I am glad that I will still be working with you! So George, even though thank you does not seem adequate for everything you have done for me, I do thank you. Much love to you!”

-Wendy Withey. B.B.A., associate director of continuing professional development

“I don’t have adequate words to express my feelings and appreciation for the many roles you have served, and continue to serve, in my life—professor, chair, teacher, colleague, mentor, advisor, friend. I look forward to your future and to continuing to gaze with amazement at the many lives you impact with your wisdom and character.  You are indeed a rare gift.”

-Elisabeth H. Young, M.D., vice dean of the College of Medicine and professor of internal medicine

“Dr. Litman has been an exemplar and a role model for me since the early days of the College of Medicine. He came to exemplify all of the virtues I aspired to uphold as a future physician. He was, and continues to be, honest and humble, committed to his patients as well as to his learners, knowledgeable and inquisitive, and with genuine human compassion. He cared deeply about our fledgling school, and has served it, and us, for a lifetime. I am honored to be attempting to follow in his footsteps, not just as chairman of medicine, but as a physician, and as a man, and husband, and father. I am forever grateful for his influence.”

-Joseph Zarconi, M.D., chair of internal medicine

“I have been fortunate enough to know Dr. George Litman for the past 38 years. I have spent considerable time traveling, talking and enjoying times with him. He is an incredibly kind, compassionate, likeable and funny man. George has the ability to make you feel as if you are the most important person in the room and he sincerely appreciates everything you do for him. Conversely he will do anything for you. The medical profession and the world needs more people like George Litman.”

-Hugh J. Morgan  

"My son Raju Behara is one of the many thousands of students that were molded by Dr. George Litman throughout his career. During Raju's high school years, Raju was provided an opportunity to work on research projects in Medicine and most importantly guidance by Dr. Litman. At that time, my wife Dr. Shailaja Behara and I were moved by Dr. Litman's commitment to medical education and decided to do something immensely memorable in his honor that is inseparable with NEOMED. We decided to establish a scholarship his name so that Dr. George Litman's guidance is there forever on all medical students at NEOMED."

-Shailaja and Swamy Behara

Have something to add about your experience with or impact Dr. Litman had on your life? Feel free to add it in the comments below.

Share this post
comments powered by Disqus