Hippocratic Award

Since 1969, each graduating class presents the Hippocratic Award to a faculty member annually. Photo courtesy of UF Digital Collections


Since 1969, each graduating class presents the Hippocratic Award to a faculty member annually.

Established by the UF College of Medicine class of 1969, the Hippocratic Award is presented annually by each graduating class to a faculty member who represents the ideal role model and embodies professionalism, humanism and teaching prowess. The word “Hippocratic” refers to the Greek father of modern medicine, Hippocrates, who was known for his teaching and contributions to medicine.

Award recipients were initially recognized on a plaque in front of UF Health Shands Hospital near a sycamore tree given to the College of Medicine by the Greek minister of agriculture in 1969. This tree, known as the Hippocratic tree, was a cutting from a tree under which Hippocrates taught medicine on the Greek island of Kos, according to legend.

Several years ago, the College of Medicine permanently moved the award ceremony to Wilmot Gardens and transplanted a cutting from the original tree. Today, the gardens include the sapling from the Hippocratic tree and a new display for the plaques, with a plaque for each new recipient added annually.

Faculty spotlight

2020 hippocratic award winner

Ashleigh Wright, M.D.

During a virtual ceremony held May 6, students from the class of 2020 selected Ashleigh Wright, M.D., as the 2020 Hippocratic Award recipient. Wright is an assistant professor of medicine in the division of general internal medicine. Students say she has been an advocate for medical education, and that she “will be remembered as one of the greatest physicians at the UF College of Medicine.”

Ashleigh Wright, M.D. ’07, center, in white coat, poses for a photo with third- and fourth-year medical students and residents during fall 2019.

Hippocratic Award winners

Year Recipient Specialty
2020 Ashleigh Wright Internal Medicine
2019 Christopher Giordano Anesthesiology
2018 Ryan Nall* Internal Medicine
2017 Maureen Novak Pediatrics
2016 Richard Christensen Psychiatry
2015 Robert Hollander Medicine
2014 Robert Hatch Community Health & Family Medicine
2013 Robert Hollander Medicine
2012 Patricia Abbitt Radiology
2011 Maureen Novak Pediatrics

*Denotes a UF College of Medicine graduate