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In Memoriam: Arnold Belker, MD

Arnold Belker MD.

Arnold Belker, MD died on August 26, 2023. Dr. Belker was a highly respected leader in Urology. He was recognized by the American Urological Association (AUA) in 2016 when he was the recipient of the AUA Presidential Citation Award and was listed in the AUA’s esteemed Didusch Museum of Urologic History for his accomplishments in microsurgery and male infertility. Indeed, he was among the first Urologists in the country to perform microsurgical procedures and taught these skills to many urologists. He organized and/or served as faculty member for many microsurgical courses sponsored by the AUA. Arnold published a highly-cited, landmark article concerning the results of 1,469 microsurgical vasectomy reversals in a collaborative study that he organized with urologists at the Universities of California at San Francisco, Michigan, Oregon and the Cleveland Clinic. He served on three different AUA Guideline committees.

Arnold also served as President of three professional societies: the American Society of Andrology (where he received the Distinguished Service Award) and the Society of Reproductive Surgeons (which honored him as the recipient of its Distinguished Reproductive Surgeon Award “in recognition of his many contributions as a reproductive surgeon, and for his role as the ‘ongoing conscience’ of science in the field of male reproductive surgery”) and the Society for the Study of Male Reproduction (SSMR). Arnold, recognizing the important role of the reproductive Urologist in the care of the infertile couple, as well as the need for those working in the field of Urology to have a voice on the Board of Directors, played the key leadership role, in the creation of the Society for Male Reproduction and Urology (SMRU) as a formal affiliated society of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine (ASRM).

In recognition of his many contributions, the SMRU presented him with the Distinguished Reproductive Urologist Award “for significant contributions to the field of reproductive urology and for service to the organization”. In recognition of his impactful career, the SSMR created the “Arnold Belker Traveling Fellow Award” in 2011 and each year awards an outstanding fellow. He and his wife, Terry, traveled all over the world where he served as an invited speaker in numerous countries. He is also survived by his son, daughter, and three beloved grandchildren.