Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D.
Cato T. Laurencin, M.D., Ph.D. is a designated University Professor at the University of Connecticut, one of only two currently at the school. He is the Albert and Wilda Van Dusen Distinguished Endowed Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery. He is the Chief Executive Officer of The Connecticut Convergence Institute for Translation in Regenerative Engineering at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Laurencin earned a B.S.E. in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University, and his M.D., Magna Cum Laude, from the Harvard Medical School, and received the Robinson Award for Surgery. He is a Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, a Fellow of the American Orthopaedic Association, a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons and a member of the American Surgical Association. Dr. Laurencin served as Dean of the Medical School and Vice President for Health Affairs at the University of Connecticut.
Dr. Laurencin is an elected member of the National Academy of Medicine, an elected member of the National Academy of Engineering, an elected member of the National Academy of Sciences, and an elected Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors. He is the first surgeon in history to be elected to all four of these National Academies. He is the recipient of the National Medal of Technology and Innovation, the highest award for technological achievement in the United States. Dr. Laurencin received the award from President Barack Obama in ceremonies at the White House.
Dr. Laurencin is the 2021 recipient of the Spingarn Medal, the highest honor of the NAACP. It is presented for the “highest or noblest achievement by a living African American during the preceding year or years in any honorable field.” The award recognizes Laurencin's seminal and singular accomplishments in tissue regeneration, biomaterials science, nanotechnology, and regenerative engineering, a field he founded.
Dr. Laurencin is active in mentoring and in social justice. He is the recipient of the 2020 Herbert W. Nickens Award of the American Association of Medical Colleges (AAMC) recognizing his efforts in promoting social justice, equity and fairness. Dr. Laurencin is an expert in public health, especially as it pertains to racial and ethnic health disparities. He is a core faculty member of the Africana Studies Institute at the University of Connecticut, and is Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Racial and Ethnic Health Disparities, published by Springer Nature, the leading journal of the field. He has written landmark papers, including the first paper in the refereed literature showing high levels of COVID19 cases and deaths in Blacks.