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Kenneth “Ken” Anderson Sr., MD, passed away on Feb. 20, 2024, at the age of 94. In 1968, Anderson was one of the first residents to complete training in the newly established Department of Urology and went on to a distinguished urological career in our community.

He received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Washington in 1951, and after service with the U.S. Naval Medical Corps, returned to UW School of Medicine to earn his medical degree in 1958. Following his Internal Medicine Residency at the School of Medicine in 1962 and appointment as the medical director at Harborview Medical Center, Anderson enrolled in the new Urology Residency Program for his training from 1965 to 1968 under founding chair Julian Ansell, MD.

Creating community and partnerships

Establishing a urology practice in downtown Seattle, Anderson became an important link between the Department of Urology and the urological community in King County and across the state of Washington. He was one of the original preceptors in a Urinary Systems Core Curriculum implemented by the Department of Urology in 1969 to teach urology to medical students in office practices across Seattle.

Throughout his career and into retirement, Anderson was active in leadership roles in the Washington State Urology Society, The Northwest Urological Society and the Seattle Surgical Society.

“He introduced me widely to the urologists in the Puget Sound area and supported the Department’s Grand Rounds programs more than any other,” says Paul Lange, MD, chair emeritus of the Department of Urology, UW School of Medicine.

That sentiment echoes among his colleagues.

“It was part of Dr. Anderson’s personality to mentor and welcome younger members of the urological community. He never viewed someone as competition or as a threat to his practice; instead, he embodied the spirit that the better we were professionally as a group, the better you were as an individual. It is no wonder that he was held in high esteem by his peers. He would, with a smile and a handshake, deliver you into the company of colleagues and help you discover the enrichment to one’s career that comes with community,” says Richard Pelman, MD, professor emeritus, Department of Urology, UW School of Medicine.

Continuing support for residents

A lifelong supporter of UW Medicine, Anderson received the 1986 UW Alumni Service Award from the UW Medicine Alumni Association.

The Andersons established an endowed fund in Anderson’s specialty area, the Kenneth N. Anderson, Sr. Urology Resident Endowment. This fund provides essential support for trainees in the Urology Residency Program, recruiting the most talented and diverse trainees, providing outstanding clinical and surgical training, and developing leaders in urology, including those in community practice and academic surgeon scientists.

Additional details of Anderson’s life can be found in the Seattle Times Obituaries.