Passing of Rick Anderson, 1945 to 2023

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We are saddened to hear of the recent death of Rick Anderson, a true pioneer in the field of oculoplastics. Our thoughts are with his family, friends and colleagues.



Dr. Anderson was an Iowan who received his undergraduate degree in Chemistry from Grinnell College in 1967 and his MD from the University of Iowa in 1971. After completing a surgical internship and residency in Ophthalmology at the University of Iowa, he did two fellowships in Ophthalmic Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery under the guidance of Drs. Orkan Stasior and Crowell Beard. In December of 1976, he completed the American Board of Ophthalmology certification and became a Fellow of ASOPRS.

A teacher at heart, Dr. Anderson started his legacy of molding the future generation as the Program Director at the University of Iowa Ophthalmology residency in 1976 and later as Professor and Chief of service before moving to Utah, where he joined the University of Utah as a Professor of Ophthalmology until 1999. Rick leaves a legacy behind in the minds of the 40+ fellows he trained over the years and 100+ grand and great-grand fellows; his knowledge will live on for generations. Dr. Anderson trained fellows in the United States and worldwide for over 42 years. He is a true legend in our Society and is recognized worldwide for his expertise.

Rick wrote 300+ scientific and peer-reviewed papers, 75 book chapters, and two books in the field of Oculoplastic Surgery and delivered over 700 papers at scientific meetings. He invented or was an early proponent of many of the techniques used in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery of the eyelids and face, including the advantages of aponeurotic ptosis and eyelid retraction surgery, coining the term “tarsal strip,” treatment for essential blepharospasm, including making it a workable operation of long-term benefit to the patients, and the mechanism and treatment of traumatic optic neuropathy, thyroid eye disease and decompression, and other conditions. His other contributions are too numerous to enumerate.

Richard leaves behind his wife, children, and grandchildren. His beloved Jazz! He will truly be missed.

Gone but always remembered, living on in the works of his friends, family, colleagues, and fellows.

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