University announces Chief Health Officer Robert Winfield passed away Friday

Monday, October 17, 2016 - 5:10pm

Robert Winfield, the University of Michigan’s chief health officer and executive director of University Health Services, died at his Ann Arbor home Friday.

Winfield attended the University for undergraduate and graduate school, and served as a faculty member in in the department of Internal Medicine.

He became executive director of UHS in 1999, after serving as staff physician and then medical director there. In 2006, he was named the first ever chief health officer for the University after then-president Mary Sue Coleman created the role as a part of an ongoing wellness initiative. He also served as the medical director for the MHealthy program.

Additionally, Winfield lectured in the School of Social Work and School of Public Health.

Currently, Howard Saulles, Chief of the UHS Eye Care Clinic, is filling in for Winfield's previous leadership positions.

University spokesperson Rick Fitzgerald wrote in an email interview that Winfield’s passion for his work will be missed across the University.

Bob Winfield was one of the first university officials I worked closely with when I started at U-M in the spring of 2009,” he wrote. “He was passionate about the health and well being of the university community and always willing to talk about that with others. I am just one of many on campus who will miss him dearly”

In a statement, Internal Medicine Prof. Kim Eagle, director of the Frankel Cardiovascular Center, wrote he admired Winfield and his dedication to the University.

“Bob was an amazing advocate for his patients and for the university community at large,” the statement read. “He was deeply passionate about helping our students, faculty and staff achieve a better health state through the way we live and through superior access to preventive health care.  His grace and compassion were without equal.  We have lost one of our great ones.  I shall miss him deeply, but the lessons he taught me and the spirit with which he lived his profession and life will stay with me.”

A visitation will take place Tuesday at the University of Michigan Museum of Art from 4:30 to 8:00 p.m. Funeral services will be held Wednesday at Nie Funeral Home at 10 a.m.

Winfield’s family has asked that in lieu of flowers, all donations be made to the Comprehensive Cancer Center Leukemia Research Fund or The Jewish Federation of Greater Ann Arbor.