This article is from the archives of the UB Reporter.


Published: October 21, 2004

Richard T. Sarkin, associate professor of clinical pediatrics in the School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences and considered by many to be one of the finest teachers in the medical school, was killed on Tuesday in a plane crash in Missouri. He was 54.

Sarkin was on his way to a conference at the Kirksville College of Osteopathic Medicine when the commuter plane crashed in Kirksville, about 220 miles northwest of St. Louis.

A UB faculty member since 1981, Sarkin served as director of medical student education and coordinator of the pediatric clerkship in the medical school.

He was an internationally renowned expert in the area of improving teaching skills of faculty and residents, and improving ways for physicians to communicate with patients and families. He coordinated the Teaching Effectiveness Program in the medical school from 1992-97, and was on the advisory board of the university's Center for Teaching and Learning Resources. He frequently conducted workshops for the center.

Sarkin received a Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Teaching in 1998 and the Louis A. and Ruth Siegel Award for Excellence in Teaching from the medical school in 2000.

A graduate of The Johns Hopkins University and New York Medical College, Sarkin completed a pediatric residency and chief residency at Women's and Children's Hospital of Buffalo, where he was an attending physician at the time of his death.