Thursday, October 18, 2007

STPM Participants - Raymond Ryckman, Phd

STPM Participants
Raymond Ryckman, PhD

Raymond E. Ryckman, PhD (left),

Raymond E. Ryckman, PhD, became the foremost authority on Triatoma. This work is still highly important to public health in Central and South America.

In the Memoirs of Doctor Bruce W. Halstead, he talks about the establishment and development of the School of Tropical and Preventive Medicine for Loma Linda University from 1948 to 1958. In reference to his close friend and his involvement with the STPM, Doctor Halstead writes:

"We were able to obtain a small amount of money with which we hired a medical entomologist by the name of Dr. Raymond Ryckman, a vey bright, dedicated and energetic medical entomologist who had just received his Ph.D degree from University of California At Berkeley (UCB).

Ray had his Department of Medical Entomology office on the second floor adjacent to my department. Ray later cleaned out tons of debris from the third floor which he convcerted into his medical entomology laboratory.

Shortly after his arrival Dr. Ryckman obtained a research contract with the Army on insect vectors of military importance and rapidly expanded his research operations working with insect pesticides, his beloved Triatoma Kisssing bug vectors of Chagas disease, and fleas capable of spreading bubonic plague. Much of his research time was conducted in the field collecting insects and testing some of the Army's newer insecticides."

[From LLU website - ]

The emergence of research: Historical insights from the emergence of research at Loma Linda University
By Barry L. Taylor, PhD

The STPM hired well and built a strong research team. Dr. Ryckman, a medical entomologist trained at University of California, Berkeley, joined the team and obtained contracts with the Army to study various vectors. He became the foremost authority on Triatoma, the “kissing bug” that is the vector for Chagas disease.

This work is still highly important to public health in Central and South America, and as a result, the Communicable Dise ase Center of the United States Public Health Service republished Dr.Ryckman’s dissertation and an annotated bibliography of 23,000 references in Spanish, French, Portuguese, and English only a few years ago. This research was supported in part by funding from the World Health Organization.

Raymond E. Ryckman, PhD (left), became the foremost authority on Triatoma. This work is still highly important to public health in Central and South America.

Loma Linda University Pays Tribute

Ray Ryckman
School of Tropical and Preventive Medicine

Ray Ryckman got some long over due recognition from an institution that he has served most all of his professional life. He is the only person left that was deeply involved with the School of Tropical and Preventive Medicine. As such he is the one person who still knows most of the history and politics involved with STPM, Bruce W. Halstead, and Loma Linda University back when it was still called the College of Medical Evangelist.

STPM was founded by Dr.s Mozar and Halstead back in 1948. Dr. Halstead left in 1958 and started the World Life Research Institute. Halstead and Ryckman have long been friends. Ray was in Bruce and Joy's wedding. It was Bruce that advised Ray to go get an undergraduate degree from U. C. Berkeley in zoology, just like he had done.

When the original STPM building was torn down, Ryckman was able to salvage some of the windows and the original sign. He used the windows to build a greenhouse and he put the sign over his front porch. For Ray Ryckman, being part of the STPM and the history involved, is something that he feels proud to be a part of as he was. Under STPM, Doctor Halstead was singlehandedly the first person to ever conduct research at Loma Linda and in doing so he got the first grants and pioneered the grant funding of research at Loma Linda as well.

School of Public Health honors students at awards banquet

The School of Public Health gave out its diplomas on June 10, but the evening before, the School also gave out multiple awards to students, faculty, alumni, and staff at the annual awards banquet.
David Dyjack, DrPH, CIH (right), honors
Raymond Ryckman, PhD, and Carolyn Stuyvesant, MS.

The School paid tribute to the past, as well. An old sign reading “School of Tropical and Preventive Medicine” was put on display. This organization at LLU was a forerunner to the current School of Public Health, which was established in 1967 and is celebrating 40 years of existence this year. The sign was borrowed from Raymond Ryckman, PhD, emeritus professor of microbiology, School of Medicine, who was also involved in the early days of public health at LLU.

Dr. Ryckman and Carolyn Stuyvesant, MS, an early public health student, were recognized by David Dyjack, DrPH, CIH, School of Public Health dean.

Dr. Dyjack also gave special recognition to Susanne Montgomery, PhD, MPH, and Christine Neish, PhD, for their hard work and dedicated service to the School. Dr. Montgomery has worked at the School for about 12 years, and she served for the past two years as the School’s associate dean for academic affairs. She recently stepped down from this administrative post in order to focus on research, and she is now director of the School’s Center for Health Research.

Dr. Neish has worked in the School of Public Health since 1973. While she still holds a secondary appointment in the SPH, as of summer 2006 her primary appointment is now in the LLU School of Nursing.

To Read Full Story on LLU website - CLICK HERE

Bruce and Joy Halstead Wedding Picture
Raymond Ryckman is in uniform

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