AUA Summit - Said A. Awad, MD (1937 - 2021)

Said A. Awad, MD (1937 - 2021)

Dr. Said A. Awad passed away peacefully on June 19, 2021, at the age of 84. Born in pre-war Cairo, Egypt, and after graduating from Cairo University, Said immigrated to Canada in 1961. He was 25 years old and quickly embraced all the opportuni¬ties Canada had to offer as he dedicated himself to his urology training. After a four-year residency in Kingston, Ontario, Said moved to Toronto for additional specialization. A few months later, he met the love of his life, a nurse named Sharon Jones. They were engaged after six weeks and married a few months later.

After four years in private practice in London and Kitchener, Said moved back to Kingston and developed an excellent neurourology program. He established the first urodynamics laboratory, at Queen’s University in Kingston. His first Fellow was HG Kiruluta. In 1980, Said moved to Halifax, where he served as the Head of the Department of Urology, Faculty of Medicine, Dalhousie University for 17 years (1980–97). Said built a remarkable depart¬ment, including clinical, academic, and research areas, especially in functional urology. He loved teaching and mentoring urology trainees. He was very well organized and planned his departmental activities several years ahead. His legacy includes a large, world¬wide diaspora of medical practitioners who graduated from the urology: Ray Delacruz, Rex Ajayi, Ayo Gomih, Francis Anthony, Richard Norman, Peter Wentzell, Bruce Murphy, Harin PadmaNathan, Wallace T’ien, Joseph Lawen, Tom Morgan, Robin Roberts, Joe Boudreau, Jerzy Gajewski, Peter Anderson, Bruce Palmer, Samir Yassa, Colin Dinney. John Grantmyre, Allan Patrick, David Bell, David Sutherland, Waleed AlKhudair, Scott MacDiarmid, Eric Freedman, Ravi Kamra, Paul Hanson, Christopher Morash, Hamoud Al-Arman, Graham Greene, Avinash Gulanikar, Simon Treissman, Arun Mathur, Dave Padmore, Derrick Tooth, Hassan Al-Zahrani and Peter Lau.

Together with Dr John Downie he established world class lower urinary tract research lab in the Department of Pharmacology. He spearheaded getting a $516,000 Medical Research Council Development Grant (Awad, Downie & Schwarz) on “Lower urinary tract physiology, pharmacology and dysfunction in neurogenic disorders” (1981-84). MRC funding in this area continued for over 10 years (with the addition of J Gajewski). The following urology fellows carry out the research: SK Sogbein, JB Gajewski, S El-Salmy, DC Rudy, CAM Cadogan, HD Flood, AM Skehan, ME AbdelMagid, S Matsuura, JJ Puthenparumpil and N Power.

He influenced worldwide research and development on urinary incontinence and neuro-urology with the abundance of publications on these topics. He retired in 2003 as a professor emeritus of Dalhousie University. Said thrived with a mix of teaching, research, and clinical responsibilities throughout his career, and he was repeatedly recognized for his accomplishments in all three areas.

Said’s contribution to the Canadian Urological Association was enormous since he become a member in 1969. He was Secretary of the association from 1982–1987 and was Scientific Chair of the CUA meeting in Halifax in 1988. He was especially proud to have served as President of the CUA in 1989–1990, with the annual meet¬ing held in Vancouver, BC. For his contribution to the CUA and Canadian urology, Said received the CUA Lifetime Achievement Award in 2002. Said also significantly contributed to international associations and was named as one of only 75 members of the American Association of Genito-Urinary Surgeons. Said was elected President of the Northeaster Section of American Urological Association in 1990–91. Said contributed considerably to the International Continence Society and was the Chair of the annual meeting in 1992, held in Halifax.

Said was always an early riser. He had energy, dedicated himself to his work, and had a remarkable ability to focus. He was humble. He was respectful and sincerely grateful for everyone around him, recognizing the blessings of his life and rarely com¬plaining (even when his golf ball went in the water). Said strived for excellence, but not accolades. We will forever miss his warm smile, compassion, curiosity, and support.

Said is survived by Sharon, his spouse of 55 years, his daughter Michelle (Jack Graham), son Brian (Catherine McKellar), grandchildren Paige (David Owens), Elias, Amelia, and Ephrem, step-grandchildren Hannah (Gabriel Rose), John, and Mac, and step-great-granddaughter, Hadley.

Contributed by Dr. Jerzy B Gajewski, Michelle Awad and Brian Awad