American Surgical Association Transactions

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1950 - 2020

Robert L. McCauley, M.D., 1950-2020

Robert Lee McCauley, MD, FACS was born in Baltimore, MD November 30, 1950, and after a lengthy illness, passed away at his home in Galveston, TX on June 17, 2020, with his devoted wife Donna at his bedside. He is survived as well by his loving family, sister Rebecca and brothers Solomon, Willie and Albert, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

Dr. McCauley graduated from college and medical school at the University of Chicago. He completed his Surgery residency there, followed by the Plastic Surgery residency at the University of Texas Health Science Center, Houston. Dr. McCauley then entered his lifelong career at the University of Texas Medical Branch Galveston and the Shriner's Hospital for Children - Galveston. He was a pioneer in pediatric burn reconstruction, lecturing and publishing extensively in the field, most notably producing the iconic book on this subject. Widely recognized for his expertise in reconstructive burn surgery, he served national leadership roles with the Food and Drug Administration, American Burn Association, the American Association of Tissue Banks, and the National Medical Association. He is the only plastic surgeon to have been honored to serve as the President of the Society of Black Academic Surgeons. His was justifiably proud of his induction as a member of the American Association of Plastic Surgeons and the American Surgical Association, as well as his service as a Senior Examiner for the American Board of Plastic Surgery.

Locally, Dr. McCauley served as the Chief of Reconstructive Surgery and Medical Director of both the Tissue Bank and Skin Culture Laboratory at the Shriner's Hospital. He rose through the ranks at UTMB Galveston to become a tenured Professor of Surgery and Pediatrics. He was revered locally for his wicked sense of humor and devotion to teaching the residents and students. He was a respected mentor to many, particularly surgeons of color. He was a frequently requested participant for recruitments of minority faculty members at UTMB, to the point that he good humoredly complained about rarely getting to eat at home. He was a quiet but enormous supporter of the Star of Hope charity in Houston.

He will be missed by the many who enjoyed his humor, teaching, mentoring, clinical care and friendship. We have lost a great contributor to pediatric burn care, but we also have lost a good friend and colleague.