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During the 1980s and 1990s serendipity brought together in the Department of Surgery at The Johns Hopkins Hospital a talented group of young men and women, many of whom received their training there, some of whom were on the faculty, and many were both. The group was outstanding clinically, superb technical surgeons, excellent teachers, productive clinical researchers, and in some instances excellent basic scientists. The one common thread however that bonded them all together was leadership ability. Many were to go on to become Department Chairs, others Division Chiefs, and in some instances Program Directors. Their accomplishments have been a source of great pride.
A festschrift is somewhat a source of embarrassment for the individual being focused upon. One has to balance a sense of pride and delight, without appearing too delighted and pleased with the recognition. However, my pride in their accomplishments, and the opportunity for some of the them to stand up and be recognized, quickly overcame any resistance that I might have had. This of course was initiated by my long time friend and colleague, Keith Lillemoe, and his willingness to have these festivities published in the Annals of Surgery. Chris Wolfgang also played a key role. Keith has epitomized and led this group of highly productive surgeons from the onset, and has been the glue that has allowed this group of remarkable individuals to remain not only close colleagues, but good friends. I would like to take this unique opportunity to thank all of them for their efforts, and also to thank my family for their unwavering support.
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