Head and Neck Surgical Oncology, A Family Tradition

Drs. Scott and Marshall Strome

For alumni Marshall Strome, M.D., M.S., and Scott E. Strome, M.D., head and neck surgical oncology is a family tradition. Here is a closer look at this father-son duo.

Dr. Marshall Strome

Dr. Marshall Strome was the oldest grandchild in a family where no one had more than a high school education. "My grandmother decided that I was to become a doctor, and I never considered another career."

Dr. Strome attended medical school here at U-M. He enjoyed it, noting that the excitement of finalizing a lifelong goal made the time pass quickly. As he considered a career in both otolaryngology and cardiac surgery, Dr. Frank Ritter played an important role in the decision process. "Dr. Ritter was a tremendous teacher, and he made otolaryngology come alive. His influence lead to me choosing ear, nose and throat."

Dr. Strome continued to build upon his academic career, accepting an otolaryngology residency here at U-M. "My residency experience was exceptional. Teaching was emphasized, and the department faculty and staff were great role models."

As he reached the end of residency, Dr. Strome chose to go into practice in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Dr. Walter Work had other plans for him. "He wanted me to practice academic medicine, and he shepherded me along that path. He changed my career course, followed it closely, and even in his retirement he would call to check on my progress. I will always be grateful for his mentorship."

Dr. Strome went on to practice at the University of Connecticut and then Harvard University, where he headed the otolaryngology programs at both the Brigham and Women's Hospital and the Beth Israel Medical Center. In 1993, Dr. Strome was recruited to the Cleveland Clinic, where he chaired what would ultimately become the Head & Neck Institute. Today he is director of the Center for Head and Neck Oncology and the Head and Neck Transplantation Program at Roosevelt St. Luke's Hospital in New York City. He is also co-founder and CEO of Aero-Di-Namics International, LLC and co-chair of the Scientific Advisory Board at Medrobotics. "My years at Michigan, with the friendships made and the guidance from the faculty and chairman, provided the foundation for what followed."

In his free time, Dr. Strome enjoys daily exercise, cycling, skiing and fishing.

Dr. Scott Strome

Dr. Scott Strome attributes his initial interest in medicine to his dad. "I had a great experience growing up. My dad really loved being a doctor, and it was contagious. I used to be dressed and ready to go to work with him when his pager went off."

Dr. Strome chose medicine for his own career and attended medical school at Harvard University. He recalls that some of his favorite memories from medical school were regular lunches with his dad. "My dad was working at Harvard while I was going to medical school there. We used to get together for lunch every Friday, at least when we could. It was great."

Like his father, Dr. Strome found himself considering two possible medical careers: orthopaedic surgery or otolaryngology. "I chose otolaryngology, because it offers a special balance of clinic and operating time." Dr. Strome matched into the otolaryngology residency program here at U-M, like his father. ""It was an easy choice. U-M was the best program in the country, and I knew it was where I wanted to go."

Dr. Strome excelled in residency and especially enjoyed the opportunity to conduct translational research. "My research experience at Michigan paved the way for the research portion of my career. It made me realize that I wanted translational research to be an important part of my work."

Following residency, Dr. Strome completed a head and neck fellowship under Richard E. Hayden, M.D., FACS. In 1998, he began his clinical practice at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine, where he also had the opportunity to work in the research lab of Lieping Chen M.D., Ph.D. Dr. Strome remained at the Mayo Clinic until being recruited to chair the Department of Otolaryngology-Head and Neck Surgery at the University of Maryland School of Medicine, where he remains today.

"I always aspired to being a department chair, but I wanted to do it at a time when I thought I was established enough to be able to help others. I hope I do that every day." In his spare time, Dr. Strome enjoys walking and hiking with his wife Kimberlee, watching his daughter Arianna play soccer at New York University, spending time with his daughter Sophie, who recently committeed to playing field hockey at Brown University and watching his son Maxwell play club soccer.