Doug established a general surgical practice in 1977 in Steinbach, Manitoba. As the first surgeon in the town of 7,000 people with a drawing area of 20,000, he was soon extremely busy and constantly in demand. He decided to pursue further training in colorectal surgery and enrolled in the University of Minnesota colon and rectal surgery residency training program in 1983 after which he practiced in Calgary until 1987. He then returned to Minnesota to join the faculty of the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery at the University of Minnesota.
Doug quickly established himself as a world expert in colorectal surgery and was a pioneer in staging rectal cancer by the use of endorectal ultrasonography. He developed a large practice in St. Paul, pursued his many academic interests and assumed leadership positions in the ASCRS and other professional societies. Doug especially enjoyed teaching and served as the residency program director for the Division of Colon and Rectal Surgery at the University of Minnesota from 1992 until 1997.
After being offered a leadership position at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Doug and Sola moved to New York City. Doug was delighted as his three children were married and soon provided Sola and him the great joy of grandchildren. Doug was awarded the Stuart H. Q. Quan Chair in Colorectal Surgery at MSKCC and for the past ten years, has been the much respected and loved Chief of the Colorectal Surgery service. His colorectal surgical colleagues at MSKCC offered this tribute to their leader. “Doug Wong was a strong force in the ASCRS; an admired leader in the international community of surgeons; a proud husband, father and grandfather; and a man of unshakeable goodness, quiet grace, and true wisdom. He was a magnificent teacher, a trusted friend, and a superb doctor. His dedication to the things he loved—his work, his friends, and his family—was inspiring to us all.”
Those of us fortunate to have known and worked with Doug echo those sentiments. His great, quiet inner strength, his determination to make the world a better place and his unwavering kindness and integrity serve as a model for each of us to emulate. Our hearts and thoughts go out to Sola as well as to Melissa and Will, Valerie and Mike, Richard and Leah, and the grandchildren. He will be deeply missed.
David A. Rothenberger, MD
January 23, 2011
Links to his ASCRS Mentor Award and his 2008 Presidential Address, “Cherish the Past, Prepare for the Future,” are given below.
Click here to view Dr. Wong’s Mentor Award
Click here to view Dr. Wong’s Presidential Address
Click here to view Dr. Wong’s Presidential Address (Video)