Two Medical College of Wisconsin alumni have the distinction of being recognized as the National Football League’s best in caring for its athletes.
Robert Anderson, MD ’83, Orthopaedic Surgery Foot & Ankle Fellowship ’89 (pictured far right), is the most recent recipient of the Jerry “Hawk” Rhea Award for Outstanding NFL Team Physician. Dr. Anderson, a Carolina Panthers team physician, received the honor earlier this year following the team’s run to the Super Bowl.
That was just five years after MCW classmate and alumnus Patrick McKenzie, MD ’83, GME ’88 (pictured below) earned the same award as team physician for the Green Bay Packers after their Super Bowl championship season in 2010-2011 – when the Packers had the longest injured reserve list in the league.
Orthopaedic surgeons by trade, both MCW alumni promote the overall health and safety of the players on their teams and consult on a myriad of injuries. Occasionally they must deliver the bad news to coaches that a player will have to miss time on the field.
Dr. Anderson is a founding member of OrthoCarolina’s Foot & Ankle Institute in Charlotte, North Carolina, and past president of the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society. In addition to his service with the Carolina Panthers, Dr. Anderson is a consultant to numerous collegiate and professional sports teams.
Dr. McKenzie specializes in sports medicine, arthroscopy and ligament reconstruction at Bellin Health Sports Medicine and Orthopaedics in Ashwaubenon, Wisconsin. He currently is the medical director for the Green Bay Packers and team physician for the University of Wisconsin-Oshkosh.
The award, now in its 20th year, is named after Jerry Rhea, head athletic trainer for the Atlanta Falcons from 1969-1994 and assistant to the Falcon’s president from 1994-2001. Reah also has served as president of the National Athletic Trainers Association, which hands out the award.
-Article by John Burlingham; MCW Magazine, Summer 2016