Testimonials

My fellowship with Dr. Day was truly one of the most rewarding experiences I have had.  As an educator, Dr. Day puts a great deal of thought into how to convey his experiences to his trainees.  When it comes to teaching, Dr. Day would never let his busy schedule get in the way.   He would always take the time out to go over an upcoming case with us, even if it were late at night or during the weekend.  With Dr. Day, “going over a case” takes on new meaning.  It means drawing out the anatomy so that you “own” it.  It means spending 30 minutes digging through his shelves of books for the one picture that he thinks truly depicts the point he wants to make.

In the operating room, Dr. Day’s love of teaching was even more apparent.  As a master surgeon, he demands perfection (or as close as one can get to perfection) and he has passed on to us his years of experience so that we can strive towards that goal.  But more importantly than surgical techniques, he has taught us the integrity with which we must evaluate our errors.  He frequently teaches us, by example, that it is only with the brutal honesty with which we evaluate ourselves that we can better ourselves and do well by our patients.  As a devoted teacher, a compassionate doctor, and a brilliant surgeon, Dr. Day is nothing short of an exemplary role model for me and all those around him.

 

Rose Du
Assistant Professor
Department of Neurosurgery
Harvard Medical School

 


 

I have known Arthur Day for nearly 20 years in both personal and professional capacities and in my view he is the consummate academic neurosurgeon. He possesses a unique combination of knowledge, wisdom, judgment, and unparalleled surgical skill. His clinical and academic career has been focused primarily on cerebrovascular disorders which encompass the most complex and unforgiving treatment challenges in all of surgery. He has not only succeeded in this realm with remarkable outcomes but he has also used his experience to refine and improve the safety of common surgical techniques. He is particularly well known for his contributions to the anatomical understanding of intracranial aneurysms and microsurgical clipping strategies.

Art is renowned among his colleagues as a passionate and effective educator. During my vascular fellowship and since, I have seen him use a gentle Socratic method to explore and expand the knowledge base of his students. He engages them and keeps their attention regardless of their level of experience. The basis of his method is to insure that each student has a complete grasp of a given concept so that they can then apply their knowledge synthetically to solve new problems. It is an effective way to organize medical decision making and Art is a master.

Art has had a dramatic influence on the specialty of neurosurgery through his extensive involvement in training, public policy, and advocacy. He has held leadership positions in virtually every important neurosurgery organization. He served on the Residency Review Committee (RRC) for neurosurgery which defines and regulates residency training requirements. He served a 6 year term on the Board of Directors of the American Board of Neurological Surgery (ABNS) which credentials trainees to practice neurosurgery after residency. He was president of the Congress of Neurological Surgeons and treasurer of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons; the two largest professional service organizations for neurosurgery in North America. He is currently the President-elect of the Society of Neurological Surgery (the Senior Society) which is the most prestigious and influential of all neurosurgical organizations in America. Each of these organizations rely entirely on volunteer effort and active participation. Art has a consensus building leadership style and refined interpersonal skills that have enabled him to influence training and practice standards and thereby shape the future of our specialty.

I profoundly admire Art as a friend, mentor, and a person. My fellowship experience with him advanced my skills as a doctor beyond measure, but I also learned many invaluable lessons about life and friendship. Art is genuine, compassionate and generous and is a devoted husband and father. He taught me to honor my promises and continually strive for improvement by way of his example. Perhaps his most valuable lesson was to be intellectually honest and self-critical so as to learn from both failure and success. I know that he lives by this principle and expects no less from his students.

 

Joel D. MacDonald, MD
Associate Professor of Neurosurgery
University of Utah

 


 

There are a few characteristics that a great surgeon possesses; determination, courage, technical excellence and compassion are among the most notable ones.  We are blessed in American neurosurgery to have several such surgeons who push us all to reach our limits.  Many of these leaders are found in the academic world and some of them would also qualify as true mentors by their dedication to bringing younger people around them to a higher level, supporting them, promoting them and sharing with them what greatness is truly made of.  Still fewer of them possess a charisma that makes you want to be like them, to think like them, to talk like them with patients, to move your hands like them, to act like them when adversity hits.  Dr. Day is one of these very few who one comes by rarely in a lifetime.  What makes him stand out from the rest of this exclusive group of leaders is the fact that when you stand next to him he makes you feel taller. And that from a person that over the past thirty years has held every position of power and service in neurosurgery, having led the Congress of Neurological Surgeons, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, the Residency Review Committee for Neurological Surgery, the American Board of Neurological Surgery and the Society of Neurological Surgeons – all positions voted for by his peers.  There is hardly anyone who works with him that does not aspire to be a little more like him at some point in their career.

Having been fortunate enough to have been trained by some of the best neurosurgeons over the past thirty years on both coasts and beyond, I consider Art the formative influence on how I lead my career, how I make decisions, and how I judge my own performance.  His unique ability to hone on the most pertinent part of the issue at hand, be it a difficult neurosurgical problem, an organizational/managerial concern, or a personal life balance issue, makes him the kind of teacher that everyone should be fortunate enough to have. I have known Art now as a mentor and a friend for more than 10 years and despite the thousands of miles that separate us geographically, he is still the person I would pick up the phone to call when I need help.

 

 

Philip V. Theodosopoulos, MD
Associate Professor & Residency Program Director
Department of Neurosurgery
University of Cincinnati