2019 AOF W. Douglas Ward, PhD Educator of the Year Award

October 22, 2019

The AOF is proud to honor Richard T. Jermyn, DO, with the 2019 AOF W. Douglas Ward, PhD Educator of the Year Award.

The Educator of the Year Award is one of the highest honors the Foundation bestows each year. It recognizes an osteopathic teacher who continuously displays unwavering dedication to the tenets of osteopathic medicine and a true passion for passing those ideals on to future generations of DOs.

Richard T. Jermyn, DO, checks these boxes and more. He is a professor and chair of the Department of Rehabilitation Medicine at the Rowan University School of Osteopathic Medicine (RowanSOM) in New Jersey and director of RowanSOM’s NeuroMusculoskeletal Institute.

AOF CEO Rita Forden says, “One quote is not enough to highlight the impact Dr. Jermyn’s numerous programs have had, and research will have, on the community in which he treats. He is an incredible beacon within the osteopathic profession, and we can’t wait to see what he has next in store. We know he will continue to shine!”

Additional leadership positions at Rowan include chair of the Admissions Committee and positions on the school’s committees on managed care, clinical trials, and pre-clerkship courses. He also is a consultant and expert witness for the New Jersey State Board of Medical Examiners.

Dr. Jermyn describes his best tools in teaching as “humor, safe-space, and open dialogue.” Throughout his 23+ year career as an osteopathic educator at RowanSOM (formerly the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey – College of Osteopathic Medicine), he has received numerous teaching awards, including the school’s “Master Educator” in 2007 and the Leonard Tow Humanism in Medicine Award presented by The Arnold P. Gold Foundation.

As an educator, Dr. Jermyn breaks new ground for students by exposing them to real-life situations and the difficult roles physicians often must play. He started his career working with HIV-infected patients in both end-of-life care and then disease management during a time when this population began to survive, and brought in medical students to learn under his multidisciplinary approach to care. He also developed the first pain management core clerkship for any medical school in the country over two decades ago.

Dr. Jermyn is sought after for his expertise and ability to deliver compassionate care, which has led to him taking leadership positions on many national grant review panels, advisory boards and major committees.

John R. Gimpel, DO, MEd, President & CEO of the National Board of Osteopathic Medical Examiners (NBOME), says that “A hallmark of his career as a teacher, clinician, and admission committee member, has been his advocacy for cultural competency, inclusion, and diversity.”

Dr. Jermyn earned his DO degree from the Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine (PCOM) in 1992 and remained at PCOM to complete a traditional rotating internship in internal medicine. He then entered a Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation residency program at Temple University Hospital in Philadelphia, graduating in 1996. In addition to his positions at RowanSOM, Dr. Jermyn is director of the Comprehensive Pain Center in Voorhees, NJ; physical medicine & rehabilitation division chief at Kennedy Memorial Hospital in Stratford, NJ; and director of rehabilitation at Lions Gate Rehabilitation, also in Voorhees.

Thomas Cavalieri, DO, Dean of RowanSOM, says that “Throughout his distinguished career, Dr. Jermyn has been an advocate for patients who experience chronic pain, physical or cognitive impairments due to disease or injury, and develops innovative approaches to help them reach their primary functional abilities.” 

Committed to research, Dr. Jermyn has received numerous grants from federal and state institutions to conduct clinical trials and other research projects focusing on pain, patient safety around opioids, safe prescribing, neuropathic pain syndromes, HIV patient pain, and non-pharmacological approaches to pain, including osteopathic manipulative medicine. His work has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals and textbooks.