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Paying forward a legacy


Dr. Richard Wellington Poley (MD ’57)

Dr. Poley (pictured above) was chief of pathology at the former Naval Hospital Oakland. He served in the U.S. Navy Medical Corps and retired with the rank of captain after 28 years of service.

Q: Who was James Patterson?

James Patterson (MD ’57, pictured below) and I met at Notre Dame when both of us were in pre-medical training there. Later, we both went to Loyola’s Stritch School of Medicine where we became Phi Beta Pi fraternity brothers and good friends. We also both served in the navy, though not together.

Q: Why did you set up a scholarship in his honor?

Jim was a hearty Irishman and unflappable, an extraordinary person. When he died suddenly a few years ago, even though I had already been supporting the University financially, I decided it would be good to set up a memorial scholarship in his honor—the James Blake Patterson Scholarship. I have donated toward the scholarship each year and have left a provision in my will to continue funding it.

Q: What do you hope it will do for Stritch students in the future?

The cost of medical education is breathtaking, so every little bit helps. I don’t want medical school to be affordable only for students in well-off families. One needs only so much money, and Stritch has done well by me. So I should do the same by it.


Rachel Anderson, Class of 2016

The 2015–16 recipient of the James Blake Patterson Scholarship: I am fortunate to attend a medical school that teaches social justice at the center of its curriculum. Yet the cost of medical education rises every year. The James Blake Patterson Scholarship is especially meaningful to me as I enter my final year of medical school. I thank Dr. Poley for this wonderful gift, which will help me continue my journey toward becoming a physician next year!



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