Past President of ASES: 1985-1987
Dr. Charles Rockwood is recognized internationally for his tremendous contributions to orthopaedic surgery during the past 40-plus years. Dr. Rockwood graduated from the University of Oklahoma School of Medicine in 1956 and completed his orthopaedic residency at the Department of Orthopaedics at the University of Oklahoma in 1961 where he studied and was greatly influenced by Dr. Don O’Donoghue. After serving 5 years in the Air Force, in 1966 he became the first Chair of what would become the Department of Orthopaedics. In this role and as Academy president he demonstrated his consummate skill in dealing with people and conflict. He travelled extensively internationally and was well recognized as one of the great ambassadors of American Orthopaedics. During his tenure, Dr. Rockwood edited, along with David Green, the definitive Textbook on fracture management: “Rockwood and Green’s Fractures in Adults”. This text is in its 7th edition (as of 2019) and remains one of the most definitive books on fracture management. In his personal practice, Dr. Rockwood has focused on the study and treatment of shoulder problems for over 35-years. He worked closely with DePuy Orthopaedics in the development of the Global™ Shoulder Arthroplasty System and a postoperative home-based exercise rehabilitation program for the shoulder. He led his team of investigators in developing a second prosthesis with DePuy specifically designed to treat fractures of the shoulder. In addition to the Fracture textbook, along with Dr. Matsen he also edited a definitive textbook on shoulder disorders and their management. In addition to his definitive textbooks, Dr. Rockwood has authored numerous journal articles and audiovisual presentations. He discontinued his surgical practice in 2010 but continued to see patients in clinic and as a consultant through 2016. He has shared his expertise to numerous residents and fellows both nationally and internationally.
His academic honors include fellowship in shoulder surgery with Dr. Charles Neer in New York, recipient of the American- British-Canadian Fellowship Award in 1967, Honorary Fellowship, Royal College of Surgeons, Edinburgh, Scotland (1993), and induction into the Oklahoma Hall of Fame in 1996. He served as president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons in 1984-85 and president of the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons in 1985-87. Dr. Rockwood is a member of numerous national medical associations and an honorary or corresponding member to numerous international medical associations. He served as a colonel in the U.S. Air Force Reserve.