John G. Kennedy
Dr. John G. Kennedy is a world-renowned foot and ankle surgeon at NYU Langone Health. As one of the founding members of the International Society on Cartilage Repair of the Ankle (ISCRA), he helped pioneer innovative technologies to help prevent cartilage degeneration. At ISCRA, he and colleagues brought together a group of surgeons from more than 40 countries to create universal treatment strategies for osteochondral lesions of the talus.
“The world is getting to be a smaller place. Medical problems are universal but often were approached in a regional manner. International collaboration, sharing knowledge for the common good, is truly the only way forward,” Kennedy says.
He is passionate about sports medicine. After fracturing his tibia while playing rugby, his infatuation with the screws and plates used to heal him began. His interest in basic science research was initiated as a medical student at the Royal College of Surgeons, where he studied the effects of oxygen-free radical scavengers on tourniquet-induced ischemia – which informed the basis of his Master of Management Studies degree. He then studied at the Enders Laboratory at Harvard Medical School under Dr. Melvin Glimcher, doing his Masters in Surgery thesis on new composites in bone regeneration. Shortly after that, he was instrumental in setting up a basic science laboratory at University College Dublin as part of his role as senior lecturer in orthopedic surgery.
As part of the international collaboration between Ireland and the U.S., Kennedy received an honorary degree from the Royal College of Surgeons. This was partly due to the pipeline of medical students and residents that travel from the R.C.S.I. to his office in New York each year to experience the different medical cultures and collaborate in innovation between the two countries.
“Ireland has a deep and rich history of medical excellence and innovators. That legacy has been supported and advanced by a massive outpouring of support from Irish communities at home and abroad who have allowed Irish doctors and scientists to achieve success,” he says. “I am blessed to have a great family, great friends, and to be Irish!” ♦