Just months before he will retire this summer, Craig Boisvert, D.O., FACOFP, was named a West Virginia hall of fame inductee.
The West Virginia School of Osteopathic Medicine (WVSOM) vice president for academic affairs and dean, along with 10 other health care professionals, were inducted into West Virginia Executive magazine’s annual Health Care Hall of Fame.
Publication staff honor professionals who have an impact on health care in West Virginia. That may mean starting a unique business to meet a high-demand need, developing medical devices to improve treatment, acting as a trailblazer in the industry, leading efforts to treat underserved populations or finding unique ways to address the state’s health issues.
“I graduated from medical school 39 years ago. I was in practice for 29 years, 25 in Lewisburg, and have been associated with WVSOM for 33 years. It certainly is nice to have received this honor as I step down from my position as dean,” said Boisvert, who is set to retire in June.
Boisvert began his career at WVSOM as a faculty member and was a family physician for 25 years at the Robert C. Byrd Clinic. After five years as faculty, he was selected to serve as chair of the school’s family practice section, where he served for a decade. He then became chair of the Department of Clinical Sciences for seven years, a position he thought would be the culmination of his career. He was selected to become WVSOM’s dean about seven years ago.
The Vermont native, who now considers West Virginia his home, said there are many rewarding aspects to being a health care professional in West Virginia.
“Being able to participate in people’s lives and help them with their health care needs is extremely rewarding. Watching students move through their years of medical school and graduate as physicians is extremely rewarding. Having the opportunity to participate on state and national committees and in state and national organizations to improve health care at the state and national level is also extremely rewarding. I can honestly say it does not seem like I have been doing this for almost 40 years, and that it has been a rewarding experience,” he said.
Boisvert said being a medical school dean is similar to a school principal. His job includes supervising faculty, maintaining responsibility for the curriculum, counseling and, when necessary, disciplining students and managing the budget.
Throughout his more than three decades in the medical field, he has received many awards, including the West Virginia Immunization Network Immunization Advocate Award, WVSOM’s President’s Award for Excellence for Outstanding Clinical Sciences faculty and WVSOM’s yearly Outstanding Employee Award. He has also been inducted into the American Osteopathic Association’s Mentor Hall of Fame.
The osteopathic physician said that he is grateful to have been recognized with awards for his work during the course of his career but is more grateful each year to see students who will join him as colleagues in the field.
“Obviously, we all appreciate recognition that our work is important, and our efforts have been noticed,” he said. “Those of us at WVSOM are reminded yearly of our efforts when, at graduation, 200 new physicians cross the stage, receive their diplomas and join the health care ranks.”
Boisvert said he is pleased West Virginia Executive is recognizing the work of health care professionals in West Virginia.
“Health care is so important to a state. Often start-up choices made by businesses or choices by individuals of where to retire are dependent upon health care availability. Health care makes a huge economic impact and is a leading employer in this state. I think it is perfectly appropriate for the magazine to acknowledge the contribution of the industry through its yearly Health Care Hall of Fame edition,” he said.
Each award recipient’s story can be found in the Winter 2021 edition of West Virginia Executive. An in-person awards banquet will take place June 24 at the Embassy Suites by Hilton in Charleston, WV.
WVSOM President James W. Nemitz, Ph.D., said it was fitting for Boisvert to be recognized in the Hall of Fame.
“I could not be happier for my longtime colleague for being inducted into the Health Care Hall of Fame after a long, distinguished career as a physician and medical school educator and administrator. Dr. Boisvert is an outstanding example of a person who has truly made a difference in the lives of others. I wish the best for him and his family as he begins the next phase of his life.”