History & Awards

Robert D. Conn, MD
Robert D. Conn, MD

History of the Dr. Robert D. Conn Heart Conference

A longtime Kansas City physician, Robert D. Conn, MD, was passionate about teaching and deeply committed to both physician and nurse education. He joined the University of Missouri-Kansas City School of Medicine in 1974 as Clinical Professor of Medicine, and by 1980, he was appointed Chairman of Medicine. Dr. Conn also served as Vice Chair of the Department of Medicine Program at Saint Luke’s Hospital and Director of its Cardiovascular Fellowship. For many years, he was the Co-Director of “The Heart” Annual Cardiovascular Symposium. Dr. Conn helped expand the conference, keeping the focus on topics of clinical relevance in daily practice.

In his memory, the conference name was changed from “The Heart” to the “Dr. Robert D. Conn Heart Conference.”

Barry D. Rutherford, MD, Lectureship Award

In 1981, Barry D. Rutherford, MD, was part of the elite cardiology team at Saint Luke’s Hospital that performed the world’s first infarct angioplasty. Known for his expertise in the development of techniques for primary coronary intervention (PCI) for acute myocardial infarction and multi-vessel PCI, Dr. Rutherford devoted much of his career to physician training and education. For more than 20 years, he led the Interventional Hawaii Course, one of the most respected interventional courses in the world. He has authored more than 200 abstracts and publications and has delivered more than 230 invited lectures around the world.

In 2016, Dr. Rutherford received the Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutic, Asia Pacific “Master of the Masters” Award. This prestigious award only has been bestowed upon a handful of world-renowned interventional cardiologists who have built an undisputed leading reputation in the field.

Previous Barry D. Rutherford, MD, Lectureship Award Recipients

  • 2021 Martin B. Leon, MD
  • 2020 Gregg W. Stone, MD
  • 2019 William W. O’Neill, MD
  • 2018 Rajiv Gulati, MD, PhD
  • 2017 David Holmes, MD, Inaugural Recipient
James E. Crockett, MD Lectureship Award

James E. Crockett, MD, Lectureship Award

Modern cardiology was launched in the early 1960s, with new techniques for cardiac catheterization and coronary angiography. These advances helped pave the way for coronary artery bypass surgery and valve replacement. In Kansas City, James E. Crockett, MD, brought these innovative programs to Saint Luke’s Hospital, planting the seed for what is now Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute. With a long history of medical education, Saint Luke’s was fertile ground for a cardiac program which would include teaching, research, and tertiary patient care.

In 1970, Dr. Crockett and colleagues presented the first annual “The Heart” Annual Cardiovascular Symposium to discuss the latest concepts in cardiac care with the medical community. With this proud tradition, our cardiology conference continues to this day.

Previous James E. Crockett, MD, Lectureship Award Recipients

  • 2021 George A. Mensah, MD
  • 2020  Aaron L. Baggish, MD
  • 2019   Paul M. Ridker, MD
  • 2018   Paul A. Grayburn, MD
  • 2017   James Fang, MD
  • 2016   Alan C. Braverman, MD, Inaugural Recipient