Hugh M. Shingleton, MD

Hugh M. Shingleton, MD

Hugh M. Shingleton, MD (October 12, 2014)

Dr. Hugh M. Shingleton, born on October 11, 1931 in Stantonsburg, North Carolina, passed away peacefully on October 12, 2014, following a diagnosis of lymphoma. He was 83.

Dr. Shingleton attended Trinity College and Duke University, receiving his A.B. in 1954 and his M.D. in 1957. He completed his internship at Jefferson Medical College Hospital in 1958 and served as a Captain, USAF MC, Flight Surgeon at Webb AFB, Big Spring, TX from 1958 to 1960. He was an American Cancer Society Fellow from 1962 to 1963 and completed his residency in Obstetrics and Gynecology at North Carolina Memorial Hospital, Chapel Hill, NC in 1964. He served as Assistant Professor at University of North Carolina School of Medicine from 1964 to 1969 and completed a Special Postdoctoral Fellowship in Gynecologic Pathology (USPHS National Cancer Institute) at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons in 1967.

Dr. Shingleton’s career grew exponentially with his move to the University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), where he established the Division of Gynecologic Oncology and served as the Division’s first Director from 1969 to 1985. He was appointed the J. Marion Sims Professor and Chairman of Obstetrics and Gynecology from 1985 to 1993. He was then recognized as the J. Marion Sims Professor and Chairman Emeritus at UAB in 1993.

Dr. Shingleton was a founding member of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology (SGO) serving as President in 1985. Additionally, he was a founding member of the Gynecologic Oncology Group (currently NRG Oncology) and the American Urogynecologic Society (formerly the Gynecologic Urology Society), acting as President in 1981. He was also a founding member of the American Society of Colposcopy and Cervical Pathology.

Dr. Shingleton served on the Editorial Board of Gynecologic Oncology from 1980 to 1991 and was an Associate Editor from 1982 to 1991. He sat on the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Subspecialty Board for Gynecologic Oncology from 1980 to 1987. He was appointed as a Fellow in the Royal Society of Medicine in 1992, and an Honorary Member of the Felix Rutledge Society in 1992.

He also held important leadership positions and memberships in American Cancer Society, National Conference on Gynecologic Cancer, Gynecologic Cancer Committee. His tireless involvement in the American College of Surgeons included his service to the Commission on Cancer from 1985 to 1994 and representation of SGO as a Governor from 1986 to 1992.

Throughout his academic career, Dr. Shingleton was passionate about improving women’s cancer care. He was instrumental in developing a comprehensive understanding of the diagnosis and management of cervical cancer. His cervical cancer textbooks were seminal contributions to literature in the 1990s, used by countless gynecologic oncology trainees. He published 165 peer-reviewed articles, authored or edited nine textbooks and contributed 23 chapters to other textbooks.

Dr. Shingleton was also an excellent educator. He had a gift of motivating people; he simply asked them to do whatever was needed to be done. He sharply focused his time and energy with his colleagues, devoting 75% to an individual’s strengths and 25% to their potential for growth and change. He loved to work with overachievers, those who might not have tremendous talent but who had enormous desire. He had the ability to surround himself with “doers” and nudge or push them to extraordinary accomplishments.

His belief and support of his students, residents and fellows form the foundation of his legacy, which includes an outstanding Division of Gynecologic Oncology at UAB and four SGO Presidents, two SGO Vice Presidents, numerous SGO Council members, an ACS President and numerous ABOG leaders among his trainees. He led by example and his skill as a pelvic surgeon and his “no-nonsense” dedication to academic excellence remains a source of inspiration to all within our specialty.

When outside the hospital walls, it was evident to all that his family was the most important part of his life, and he adored his wife Lucy; his children Grant, Jeanne and Patrick; and his grandchildren Will, Bowman, Mary Claire, Virginia and Julia.

Dr. Shingleton never believed he accomplished much. The evidence would suggest nothing could be further from the truth. He was one of those individuals who made a major difference in many lives. Literally hundreds of thousands of women in the U.S. and abroad have benefitted from and remain deeply indebted to care provided by Dr. Shingleton or his trainees. He was more than an accomplished mentor and more than a skilled colleague. He was the ultimate professional, an admired and respected friend and will be missed by all who had the honor and privilege of knowing him.

– Submitted by James W. Orr Jr., MD
and Ronald D. Alvarez, MD

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