An Enduring Legacy
Devotion to Chicago Medical School (CMS) and its students was a constant thread through the career of Matthew N. Harris, MD ’56, who died in April 2023 at age 91.
Dr. Harris served on the RFU Board of Trustees from 2004 to 2012 and was a longtime member of the CMS Alumni Association Board of Governors. He was also a recipient of the CMS Distinguished Alumnus Award, which reflected a career that included service in a Mobile Army Surgical Hospital (MASH) unit in Korea from 1958–59 and 50 years as a surgical oncologist at NYU Langone Health in New York City. Dr. Harris also served as a professor of surgery at NYU School of Medicine and was one of the first attending physicians at NYU’s University Hospital.
“I launched a very, very successful and satisfying career, and there’s no question that it all started at CMS, and I never forgot it.”
His enduring legacy on the RFU campus is witnessed through the Harris Collaboration Hub, which was named in honor of Dr. Harris and his wife Frances in 2020 to welcome arrivals and provide a common area at the Innovation and Research Park.
In 2022, Dr. Harris and several colleagues from the CMS Class of 1956 held a mini-reunion via Zoom, during which he described his loyalty for his alma mater.
“I launched a very, very successful and satisfying career,” he said, “and there’s no question that it all started at CMS, and I never forgot it.”